When I’m not running or blogging my day job is a public relations manager. It’s something I’ve done for nearly 17 years now (isn’t it scary when you start counting…), seeking publicity and handling the media on behalf of clients when I was in agency, and now for my current employer after going in-house.
The norm in that time was for me to be the one writing the stories and co-ordinating the photo shoots. So it felt incredibly strange when my charity’s PR team turned the tables and said they’d like to prepare an article on me and my marathon adventure.
That’s why I found myself making headlines this week, all in the interest of spreading the word on Beacon and hopefully securing a few extra donations. It also made the whole ‘doing London’ thing feel very, very real…that April date is creeping up on all of us!
Slightly embarrassing to see my mugshot in the local paper and online, but nevertheless I’ll admit to feeling a tad proud as well. This is a big deal for me and a challenge I never thought I’d be capable of taking on when I started running again three years ago.
Talking of which, it’s been a busy week of training – 31 miles on my programme, although I notched up 32 in the end. And I did that with a cold (aka ‘man flu’ aka a ‘serious medical emergency’, obviously!). I’m surprised I’ve lasted this long without picking up some germs given how many have been going around work and my daughter’s school. In the end though, it didn’t affect me too much or stop me taking on my longest of long runs so far.
Sunday morning was a 16 miler and I decided to re-visit a route I discovered last year which goes out to Rugeley on the roads and then back towards home via the glorious AONB Cannock Chase.
Stunning as the Chase is, it’s also very hilly. And I really felt those hills on Sunday. Ran all the way and kept up a decent pace over the distance of 8:54 minute miles. But the combination of hills, some off-road running, sub-zero temperatures and freezing fog meant my first words upon reaching home were “that was brutal”.
Oh, and did I mention I had a cold!?
Despite running it well, that outing left me feeling a bit down because of how shattered I felt. Stark contrast to last week when I was buzzing after my long run and convinced I had plenty more left to give. After a little moan to anyone who cared to listen on Facebook, the essence of which was “why am I doing this to myself”, a friend of mine chipped in and said it’s because you’re trying to help others by raising money for a fantastic charity.
Very easy to forget that when you’re knee deep in training schedules, nutrition guides and yet another pile of dirty running kit that needs a wash!
And so I ended my weekend on a high, because Sunday afternoon was all about fundraising. One of my hobbies is DJ-ing and I offered to help a friend out with a kids’ disco as her little girl has just turned four. OK, so belting out the Frozen soundtrack to toddlers in Disney princess dresses isn’t quite being true to my dance music and clubbing roots, but it generated a nice donation for the Beacon Centre fund and for that I’m very grateful indeed.
As for Sunday’s “brutal” run? Looking at the planner there are plenty more miles still to do and challenges much bigger than that. In the words of the song, “Let it go” and get cracking with next week’s training instead.
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