One day I am going to write an entirely optimistic post where I have a fab week, eat well, rest well, train well, feel fab on the day and then run a sub 60 minute 10k.
Today is not going to be that day….
After succombing to man flu (the more serious female version though), I had a dreadful week – coughing, short of breath and generally feeling yuk. I followed the advice to feed a cold and starve a fever. I reached new heights of amount of food able to be eaten in one week (more the contents of the supermarket than just my kitchen). I was in bed by 9 each night (more or less) and awake a few hours later each night coughing and coughing and coughing.
I did no exercise (yep – some things becoming a regular theme) and dragged my sorry self through the week.
On Saturday, I went to pick up Mam who was accompanying me to Wakefield and even before we got started, the fun and games began. Having been so effusive in writing about my Mam’s mad moments, I got to hers having forgotten which hotel I had booked us into, where it was and when I had booked it. I realised I hadn’t had a confirmation email about the booking so had to retrace my steps and thought processes to try and remind myself of where I had booked so that I could ring them to check. I had a ridiculous and rather long conversation with the hotel when I remembered where I had booked, only to realise that the reason they had not heard of me was because (despite my very cross conviction that they must have) I hadn’t actually booked with them and was having a go at the wrong hotel for losing my booking. Pretty much that then summed up the rest of the weekend. I was very tired, very irritable and not good to be around. Mam managed to cope with me (just) and I am hoping it hasn’t put her off keeping me company next time.
Before I left Mam’s house, the entering of another (and very surreal world of Mam and Dad) reached new heights. I had a ridiculous conversation with Dad around the “not all Cities have Cathedrals” – his point and “not all places with Cathedrals are Cities” – my point. Still not sure who is right on this one but did point out to Dad that every time I go to a City to do a free run (of my own) I look for a Cathedral to start my run at – which he knows. If not every City has a Cathedral, I was wondering if it might have been a good idea to have told me earlier than nearly half way through the challenge so as I did not potentially waste so much time! He agreed……
We then had a quick go through the runs left to do. Mam has been painstakingly recording these in her little book but then realised she had lost the entire month of September yet appeared to have written the rest of the challenge dates correctly. I can’t even begin to explain how much trouble this conversation got us into trying to decide which dates where which, how she had missed some out, how she had finished the timetable at the right point despite missing out a month and so much more. We were exhausted and came to no conclusion except to rewrite the list (at another time when we had recovered from the mental exertion).
I then started to chat about the Cambridge run – Dad had come up with the idea of finding a hotel / cottage, running in Cambridge and Peterborough and doing some reminiscing sight seeing of the Cambridge colleges (Mam and Dad lived near Cambridge for many years). We had discussed this at length on our Stoke on Trent journey but when I brought it up apparently neither Dad nor Mam had any recollection of the conversation.
Dad said that was because he was in the back of the car and deaf. I pointed out that he had started the conversation so being deaf didn’t really count at that point. Mam started to nod as if a vague memory might emerge (not sure it ever did). We all decided to abandon the conversation and get on the road to Wakefield before the entire weekend disappeared in a chain of random, unrelated, surreal conversations. I should have remembered how our car journey conversations usually panned out!….
Actually the journey was relatively sane. We discussed the weather, the traffic, how late spring was and the “blush” of the trees. Apart from Mam’s “you’ve done a lot of driving haven’t you” (on a par with the traffic jams gem), we were pretty normal!
We got to the hotel and then did a reccy to the parking for the run and also to find the start point. After ending up in a garage asking for directions, and being told that the address for the start point (Clarence Park) did not exist (there was a Thorne Park but not a Clarence Park), we decided to go to the hotel and hope some signs miraculously appeared the next day.
We arrived in the car park alongside a coach load of England youth football players and we were told there would be no room to sit and eat in the restaurant as it was booked for their party of 40. We therefore ordered and sat on the bed watching TV whilst eating supper. Our room was freezing when we got there and when I asked if that was as hot as the room got, the lady just said yes! No suggestions of any alternatives! Ended up having a hot bath (lush) and sitting in bed in my PJs, cocks and jacket.
Overnight, obviously the room heated to boiling so ended up on top of the quilt trying to cool down. Slept quite well but had to be up early as run was at 9am = that was a first for me. I had thought I would like the early start but in fact it was a bit too early as I was tired, didn’t feel like eating and was quite stressed about getting to the run on time.
As it was, we made good time, the start was well signposted and the queue for the portaloo occupied most of the half hour I had between arriving and the race start. Mam took my coat for me so enjoyed the luxury of keeping warm till the last minute.
Actually the weather took a turn for the better and it was really warm. Unfortunatley it was also very windy. I felt totally stiff and unfit, and actually felt quite short of breath (related to the chest infection this week I feel). This made the run a real chore. I ran / walked it, as there were gentle inclines and at times I was running into the very strong wind (on the way back this was superlush as I was being propelled along without much effort of my own!).
I finished about 500th from the end so it wasn’t too bad but I had zero energy and felt really really unfit. Am going to look at my diet and my mid week exercise from now on as have really slipped and it is telling. I am really tired and struggling, not really with the running as such, but more because I am going to a different city each week, having to plan accomodation, travel and food etc and then coming straight back and going to work the next day.
I shouldn’t moan really – Luca has a much harder time of it that I will ever do so I am working on keeping that in my mind. I am eternally grateful for the company of Mam and Dad, Kerry, Jorja and Paul as I really don’t think I could have done this so far without them. They seem to accompany me at just the right moments when I am feeling fed up and have helped tremendously. I guess that is exactly what your family are doing for you too Luca.
On a brighter note, I was so, so excited for Luca this week. Johnny Leota, a player at Sale Sharks has been growing his hair all season for Luca. I thought he was “just” going to cut it all off after having raised really good funds for Luca. HOwever, he turned his hair into a Mr T haircut (much to the embarrassment apparently of his daughter!), played his game on TV with the aforementioned distinctive cut and then scored a try and raised his hand to Luca. I feel privileged to have worked with him and proud that he has done so much for Luca. It really makes you want to keep going even when things are a bit yuk!
Anyway, off to do a bit of work for work tomorrow then early night. Next week Salisbury then Mam and Dad and I are going on Luca’s sponsored walk – so excited xxx