Wouldn’t normally write a blog about a month of running but it’s been a crazy month of highs and lows, which in many ways is a continuation of my year in general.
This is a chance for me to get things off my chest.
Apologies but a couple of tweets wouldn’t really do it justice.
So the month began –
The month got off to a hectic start with BLACK COUNTRY HALF MARATHON on 1st July.
This was a tough but enjoyable race. Meeting twitter friends before the race is always a pleasure. That day was no exception. Met the legendary Bill as well as Charlotte and David.
Immediately headed north for SOUTHPORT HALF MARATHON which took place the following day.
Had a good day and once again met legends from UKRunChat community.
Double half marathons are never easy so it was a satisfying weekend.
4h of July saw me run a virtual 10k race organised by twitter friend Michael Bourke in aid of Stroke Association. Very happy to support this cause – the medal was pretty cool too.
Heavy workload continued with CANAL CANTER HALF MARATHON on 8th July.
Option was there so I took a chance and upgrade to FULL marathon.
In hindsight this was a stupid decision.
Hip/calf pain was evident from the outset. This intensified, getting worse as Marathon reached halfway point. I had no choice but to quit after 20.3miles.
This was possibly my lowest point as a runner. First ever DNF still hurts today.
Massive effort, all for nothing.
Why didn’t I stick with original plan to do the half marathon?
There was no time worry about it as I had another assignment to tackle.
Twitter pal Brett Anderson had been doing a series of running events in aid of NSPCC, this included running LEEDS 10k as BATMAN. He was looking for a small person to take the role of ROBIN.
I think you can guess where this is going 😂😂.
How could I turn this invitation down?
Trotting round Leeds dressed like an idiot might not seem like everybody’s idea of fun but it was the perfect ‘pick-me-up’ after the failed marathon.
I donned my ‘race kit’ and met Brett in Leeds city centre.
We were also met by more friends from UKRunChat.
LEEDS 10k was an awesome experience. The support we received along the route was unrelenting. Running as Robin was a hot, sweaty but brilliant.
**Downside of the year ironically occurred on 2nd anniversary of my first race.
Behind the smiles I’ve been suffering personal issues since Oct/November 2016, which I don’t really want to go into.
Losing my job on 12th July was a big blow but stress and other problems have been mounting for several months so something had to give.
Running is therapeutic. It’s MY time, a chance to forget troubles.
This possibly explains the amount of races and miles I do.
Next up was the WINDMILL HALF MARATHON. Another chance to forget outside issues and just run.
Met up with twitter pal Brian before the race. A pleasure as always.
No employment at moment means extra time on hands. As mentioned before, running is only time I feel ‘free’ so LSR’s happened almost on a daily basic.
Rest days were cancelled even though I knew a time out was needed.
On 19th July I ran 17miles to complete 2017 1000 mile challenge.
Circumstances meant this happened much sooner than anticipated.
Usual patterns followed……
Happy whilst running, VERY low afterwards.
July 27th saw me spontaneously travel over to Preston to attempt ‘SALWICK SCORCHER’ MARARHON.
I knew it was risky as my legs were not in great condition due to the heavy workload. The chance to bury the ghost of my failed marathon was too hard to refuse.
Salwick was certainly an experience I’ll never forget.
This was a multi lap race with 6x laps to complete the marathon.
It was run in varying conditions including the heaviest rain I’ve ever run in.
It was a tough race but I was still on for a reasonable marathon finish time as I approached the 26 mile mark.
Steady trot would mean a time of around 04:20:00 – All good.
This was where the problem occurred!
On final lap I somehow missed a turning and only realised when Garmin watch showed 27mile mark.
I turned around and headed back, looking for the run route.
Thankfully running legend Adam Holland, having already finished his race passed by and was able to point me in right direction of race route.
I finally crossed finish line having run 29.37 miles!!
Those final 3 miles were long and slow. They nearly broke me!
I can kind of laugh about it now although seeing my official ‘marathon’ finish time of 04:51.03 does frustrate.
That said, to get a marathon done still felt as good as ever.
IN SUMMARY :
It’s been a record month of mileage (227.9 miles), with triumphs & disappointments along the way.
Away from running it’s been a very bad 2017 and from a personal point of view, a horrible month of July.
Running has been my only release at times. It might sound weak but that is the situation.
Hoping a new month brings fresh optimism. Im sure it will.