Taper 12 miles run & beating those “Voices in your head”


Training for a marathon is quite a specific task, you rack up the miles steadily and do everything possible to avoid injury. However, …………….. we all have days when we are “tested”. When I say tested I don’t mean drugs I mean your mental strength,¬†your spirit, your very reason for running in the first place. Sometimes you just need reminding what you are capable of.

I ran on my own today seeing as that’s what normally happens in a marathon, my garmin watch hadn’t charged and I wasn’t really feeling the love looking at the showery rain out¬†of the window. The last 3 weekends have been 20,20 and 15 miles so my legs have been getting progressively heavier. I think all of this was in the back of my mind as I set off, but …..

The great thing about being part of a club is the number of people you know and I’d only run¬†1/2 a mile before Paul Stephens shouted encouragement at me from his van. Lifted by this I¬†decided to run a 10k route I have, twice, and then I’d have a rough idea of times.¬†As I was approaching home and the end of the first 10K I was questioning what I was doing ?

My spare drinks bottle was by the front door and I decided to leave my phone with my empty bottle. This was the smartest move of the morning. I already had little idea of the pace I was running but to then have no idea at all just seemed to free my mind. I stopped thinking about miles and measurements, about how I was feeling, about when I might stop, I just got on with it and the negative voices disappeared.

I watched the crops in a field swaying in the wind and thought how much they looked like the sea, I laughed as the sun came out and a shower got me wet, both at the same time. I could feel the wind against my face and that’s always good because you know it will be behind you on the way back. Dave Fleet cycled by and shouted “hello”¬†and most of all I simply started enjoying running in the fresh air and feeling “alive”.

I¬†thought of the comments from¬†Twitter by two ladies, Lou and Kimberley,¬†of them enjoying¬†starting out on their running adventures and¬†that made me think that running in its purest form is an escape from everyday life, freedom if you like, but it’s also¬†the sense of achievement that you gain. After all¬†you only get out of life what you put in. I settled on about 12 miles and averaged roughly 8 3/4 minute miles pace but the best result of the day was finishing with a smile and knowing I’d pushed on through.

When your legs get tired ………. run with your heart.