Thursday, 31 March 2011

Problems , problems, problems

It's very strange but even though I chose to do this half marathon it still feels like I'm being punished and I can't tell you how many times I found an excuse not to go out for a run this morning. Everything from the wet weather to my bad leg and the need to play chess on the computer, but eventually I plucked up courage and got changed. I did loads of stretches and then went for it. I was worried about my hamstring but it didn't give any twinges when I stretched so I started fairly tentatively, hoping that I could at last make some progress further round my route before stopping. I was feeling pretty good as I neared my normal stopping point and had no doubt that I could go a lot further today when I noticed that my lace had come undone. I stopped and crouched to tie it up and then my hamstring went again. It's a setback but I suppose I'll just have to give myself some time for it to heal and not worry about having to start all over again. It'd better not interfere with my golf!
I walked the rest of the way, with a few half hearted attempts to jog thrown in for good measure.
Last night I had a visit from Beccy at 'Animals at home' and I am now signed on to be a host holiday minder for dogs. The lucky dog gets to stay with us while their owners go away on holiday. I should get a pooch for the odd week in the summer and I hope that it'll provide a little light relief as well as a little pocket money. That's three jobs I've got now.
It's curry night tonight, I was thinking of walking there (it's only 20 minutes up the hill) but given my sore leg it might be more sensible to drive, provided that Helen doesn't mind driving home , of course.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

No running for two days

After I posted on Monday Helen came home from a late lunch with friends and we went for a walk across the meadows. I hadn't told her that I'd hurt my leg earlier so off I hobbled feeling rather heroic. We didn't go far and were going at a gentle pace so it didn't hurt.
On Tuesday I finished off my household chores and then mowed the lawns until the rain started, that was the end of my plans to go out on the bike - probably a good thing as my leg was a little sore after the gardening.
Today is Wednesday and I went off this morning for a game of golf, only for the heavens to open and we all decided to call it off. It ended up with an hour round trip in the car for a cup of tea.
The rest of the day so far has been taken up with producing a video of Zack's first year and printing DVD covers for it. It's never going to win an oscar but it should be fun to look back on in years to come.
I have received my contract from the Census and I'll be working with them until middle of May, more than I'd anticipated but the extra money will come in handy. Maybe I will be fit enough to jog around my district.
I'm hoping that both my leg and the weather will be fit enough tomorrow so that I can extend my 8 minutes running.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Very probably I wasn't born to run

I went to my Census training today, it's a long long time since I was in a classroom and I didn't enjoy the experience at all. I came home with a headache but I did learn a few things. Fill in your forms or the meanies will get you!
This afternoon I went for another jog, the same route as before and just as I was leaving , after my warm up, I answered the phone, it was about some potential employment so I did the right thing. The conversation took about 5 minutes before I could leave. Of course I didn't go through the warm up routine again and just as I was getting home I tweaked a hamstring. Looking on the bright side it does mean that my warm up so far has been good and it also means that I've got some muscles in there somewhere. The warm down must also be fairly Ok as I recovered better after yesterday than after the first attempt. There is hope.
I did try to keep to a more sensible pace and managed to return to my earlier 18 minutes, I feel a lot better when I get home than when I did it last week so something positive must be happening.
I passed a group of youths and received the usual "run Forest, run" shout. It's good to know that nothing really changes.
As soon as I'd warmed down and had a shower I treated myself to a hot cross bun, a true sign that Easter is approaching.
If the weather keeps up I may try the bike tomorrow, my goal on this is to cycle to the Coach and Horses for a pint of Holden's mild, about 30 minutes each way with some steep hills to negotiate. If I can do that without stopping I will feel like I'm in heaven.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Maybe I was born to run?

After my attempt on Friday I was hoping to get out and have another run yesterday but, to be frank, my legs were hurting too much for me to be bothered. They were by no means as bad as they got when I was in Scotland last year but the same muscles were shouting at me. I did go to golf and surprisingly played pretty well although when I crouched behind my ball on the first green to read the line of the putt I had to be helped up by my playing partner as my legs wouldn't function.
I went again this morning, nearly missing my time as I'd forgotten to alter the clocks (Helen has been away for a couple of days and I was left to my own devices). I didn't play as well as yesterday but my legs were feeling a whole lot better so when I got home I had a cup of tea and went out to run. It's still not really running but it is faster than when I walk.
It's been a pleasant spring afternoon and there were a number of neighbours in their gardens so I took off like an olympic sprinter and found that I had reached the point where I started walking on Friday in two minutes less, it was certainly time for a walk.
I walked two minutes and then ran for four before another two minute walk and finally running home the last two minutes - I was only out 16 minutes but it felt like all day. Having said that, I was quicker and didn't feel any worse than the other day but I can tell you that walking a long way is a whole lot easier than running a short distance.
Still, I've now covered 5K in my training, about a quarter of what the actual half marathon distance is.
Happy birthday to Sandy in NZ, sorry I couldn't make your pig roast but we'll be meeting up soon. Well done to Siobhan, I can't imagine what pain you have to go through in a triathalon.
I'm off to Kidderminster in the morning for my Census training, that reminds me - I should complete mine and post it.

Friday, 25 March 2011

I've done it

I've finally taken my first steps this morning, in the warm and encouraging spring sunshine. I received the pro advice the other day, which was about good preparation in stretching and a really good warm down at the end to help with recovery. Also I was advised to go on the mapmyrun website to work out a 2k run as a starter, and then run 3 minutes walk 2 minutes etc.
I wish I had visited this website before JOGLE because it's excellent for planning training walks as well as runs.
My first route is 2.5k down the road and back across the meadows to home, very pretty and given my experience last year a little worrying with the cows in the meadow.
After my little blister of the other day I am back to my ritualistic taping of my feet, how I've missed this since I got back from Cornwall.
Anyway, I finished in 18 minutes, with the first 8 minutes at running pace (barely faster than a brisk walk), followed by 2 minutes walking, 5 running, 2 walking and then running the last bit where the neighbours could see me. It's not world beating but I'm elated.
Yesterday I went to the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire to play golf, its a beautiful area but unfortunately the golf course didn't match the surrounding beauty. On the way we went through Ross on Wye and my companion asked which river ran through the town, is it the Severn?
Priceless, it'll be a long time before he lives that one down. I carried my bag around the undulating course but the others chickened out and drove a buggy.
It's golf again tomorrow and Sunday and I  hope to run on Saturday evening after I've finished playing.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

The best laid plans

Strangely I've been somewhat apprehensive about starting running, far more so than taking on the JOGLE challenge, and I awoke this morning after a fairly poor nights sleep feeling very nervous. I've promised everyone now that I will start running and you are expecting me to say that I did a little today.
That, at least, was my plan - firstly I decided to finish the windows at the rear of the house, now I know that all of you busy people would have done them yesterday with the roof glass but I don't currently have any time pressures and decided to put it off til today.
I was still anticipating a short run afterwards but then got on with knocking the remaining tiles off the walls of our en suite shower room (suppose that I've now admitted that I have entered the world of the middle classes) and then visiting the tip with the debris. Now I've got the time for a jog, but I've not got the energy. My legs feel like they are made of lead and I just don't want to go.
We are out for a curry tonight and then tomorrow I've got a big golf day to attend so it looks like I'll have to postpone my first run until Friday.
I do feel a fraud but I remember feeling a little like this when I decided to JOGLE, I know that as soon as I have taken my first steps I will be OK but it is just plucking up the courage to take them. Maybe the curry will get me running.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Good things come to those who wait

It's been a long time now since I last posted, life has moved on and everyone is getting older. Young Zack has had his first birthday and is now walking, who knows but he may one day go for a long walk with grandad snapper.
I've been away on a golf trip to Spain, unfortunately the weather wasn't too good but I enjoyed it just the same, even winning the trophy.
I have been appointed to work on the census, starting shortly, and to add insult to injury I've also been offered a post for the day of the next election. It's funny to think that I was in Scotland, Tain I think, when the last election was held. From the position of no work I will have two jobs at once for a short period, still it'll pay my golf fees for next year.
I've actually started doing a bit of walking on Mondays with Helen and the local 'old folks walking group'. It's only about 3 miles a time but it is some exercise.
The reason that I've decided to start the blog again is that I've made the major decision to run in the Windsor half marathon in September (I'll be 59 by then) and I thought that I'd record the trials and tribulations that I go through as I prepare for this and then, hopefully, complete it. I can't remember the last time I ran anywhere - probably to get into the pub before closing time.
Stu has also entered, he's done a couple of them already and it will be nice to have an experienced companion at the start of the run although I don't expect that he will wait for me as it progresses.
I have been and bought some running shoes, I didn't even own any trainers, which have been designed for people with flat feet like me. I was advised to walk them in before running in them and I wore them on Monday for the short walk, now I've got a small blister on my heel. I'm not going to let that put me off though - I know that after last year's experience I can cope with a few blisters.
Today, after cleaning the conservatory roof (on the inside - I don't like climbing ladders!) I went out on my bike for 40 minutes. I'm still wobbly on it and I still don't understand the gears but I didn't fall off and I hope that this will help me prepare for the run.
Stu has a friend who is a professional running coach and will prepare a training regime for me. Already I've been advised to see a podiatrist which is a bit worrying as I'm sure I keep hearing about the police arresting these people and closing their internet groups.
Tomorrow I want to get out and run as far as I can before I need to stop, it'll probably only be to the first lamppost but everyone has to start somewhere.
In the time that I've missed writing this blog I've been writing a journal about last year's walk, I've asked a few people for some input and I'm still waiting for some of it. So here's a plea to anyone who reads this, if you were involved in any way with my JOGLE; either as a walker, one of my many hosts' a blog follower or contributor, or if what I did inspired you to do something out of the ordinary yourself please send me some words and I'll get them included in the book.