Enduring Endurance Training

This is going to be a bit of a moan, this one. So, if you’re feeling at all intolerant to whining, please read no further. 

One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced over the past few months is The Bad Run. They are common. Especially for someone who spent the majority of her life previous to this adventure horizontal on the sofa. The Bad Run will never get easier to cope with. When less than 2 miles into a run my legs turn to lead, it is very hard not to lie down in the park, cry, throw a strop and go home. 

Not to sound dramatic but, (this sounds dramatic) I’ve been in varying amounts of pain since the start of January. Little niggles here and there especially my shins, big niggles in my hips, and MEGA niggles in my brain. My body was not that of a runner. By any stretch of the imagination. But I’ve forced it to run, to keep running, to keep going to the gym, to eat better, not to drink as much booze, not to lie about on a Saturday afternoon eating Mini Cheddars and watching Sex and the City. So my body is changing. It’s getting thinner, stronger and better. But it fucking HATES me for it. 

“Of course you hurt, you’re training for a Marathon. It’s GOING to hurt”. 

The pain is a constant reminder of The Battle and The Body’s Hatred. It also serves as a reminder of the battles faced by the people I’m running for. And that is what is keeping me going just now. With 7ish weeks to go, I must FIGHT the pain. I must try and tackle the fact that most of it is in my head and that the physical pain that is caused by rubbish hips and a dodgy gait will go away after I’ve run 26.2 miles. I can maybe hopefully start running to enjoy it as opposed to meeting endless targets. 

The people I’m running for don’t get that relief, though. Their pain may be temporary, but for some it will be permanent. They don’t get to hang up their Asics in 7 weeks time and say “until next year, legs…” they have to cope. 

So I will cope. Because I will finish the marathon (by hook or fucking crook) and then I can go home,eat all the cake and take shit loads of painkillers and sleep for 2 days. 

Anyway. So. The pain is annoying. And something I’m really struggling with. I’ve binned off the compression socks now on anything less than 10 miles so that my muscles stop relying on them. 

This Saturday I plan on doing my first 3 hour run. Which is so hilariously frightening that I giggle every time I think about it… 

I’ve stopped listening to music on runs, so that I can get to know my breathing rhythm and learn to zone out and learn to think through the aches and pains.

Following some long and incident free runs, tonight was a real fucking struggle. I’d planned 6 miles or an hour. Whichever came first, but at 5 miles I had absolutely no willpower left. So, with a screaming agony sprint finish, I limped to a standstill in the sunshine and wept like some kind of fucking mental. Not all runs are bad, I must add. I have had good runs where I’ve felt magical and invincible during and after. And some of The Good Runs have been 10+ miles. 


I envy those of you out there who run pain free. Who enjoy it and never have a Bad Run. Who can trot along at 8 or 9 minute miles without dying. It must be lovely to get home and stretch and feel totally brilliant. I do sometimes, until I sit down and stand up again. I am longing for that. And PLEASE tell me that you have Bad Runs too….

Maybe it will miraculously happen before May 25th or maybe it won’t. Either way, I will finish this bastarding thing.



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