Sidelined. (Temporarily).

Posted on: 17 Jan 2019

I have been struck down by a case of the dreaded man flu.  London marathon training has come to a halt.  On the plus side I have time to read a few blogs and compose my latest update from my sick bed.  Every cloud and all that…

Since my last post here I have managed to get a few more parkruns completed, including Panshanger on Christmas Day and St Albans on New Year’s Day.  My marathon training plan is to get my LSR out of the way on Saturday mornings so it may be tricky to incorporate parkruns into them as the mileage increases.  No matter how hard I try I always get tempted to go a bit quicker at a parkrun and that doesn’t help with me trying to run steady and run further so I might have to give them a miss in the coming months.

So last Saturday I planned a 9-10 mile run, which fits nicely around Ellenbrook Fields parkrun, about 2.5 miles there, parkrun itself and a slightly longer route home would see the distance done.

Now I wake up by 6am every day pretty much but last Saturday I woke up at 7.56.  Strange to sleep in, had had an early night with just a G&T and couple or so glasses of merlot.  No chance of getting to Ellenbrook but now that I have a proper local parkrun all was not lost.  Postpone the longer run until Sunday, but get a bit closer to the 100 parkrun t-shirt.  A jog down to Jersey Farm Woodland Park, a new course PB bagged, and a gentle jog home with one of my neighbours.  All good.

Sunday morning meant a longer run was needed, woke up as normal, had a couple of mugs of tea and then set off.  The weather was good for the time of year, plenty of dog walkers and other runners about, I was more on trail than tarmac and chugging along quite nicely, daydreaming about the crowds lining the route around the Cutty Sark, and then crossing Tower Bridge etc.  Do you know what? Sometimes it is all too good to be true.  I felt uncomfortable and stopped.  Maybe I needed a toilet break?  Not sure really, but didn’t feel right. I ran a bit more, stopped again, ran again, stopped again.  Something wasn’t quite right but I couldn’t put my finger on it.  I headed to Clarence Park where I could find a public toilet, maybe a comfort break would sort me out

It did temporarily but soon wasn’t properly happy and decided to head home.  Not quite 8 miles but add that to Saturday’s 5 and that was more than I had planned for the weekend anyway so still on track.

Later that day I met a pal for a pint of Guinness, at our old watering hole in Hendon, North West London.  That place has served a decent Guinness for as long as I can remember and my pal Ken likes a drop too.  I didn’t say anything but to me it didn’t taste right, he was happy enough so maybe it was me?

The Sunday roast followed and a glass of Merlot, that too I wasn’t enjoying.  What is wrong?  I tried a Sauvignon Blanc, that tasted like cold water with a nasty aftertaste.  I didn’t realise at the time but the man flu was creeping up on me.  My taste buds were going haywire, I mean imagine me not liking Guinness or wine?  Unbelievable!

So running has been put on hold, I am staying indoors, in the warm with cold and flu relief (and a drop of whisky before bed, purely for medicinal purposes of course) and hope to resume with the 9 miles again this coming Saturday.  My next milestone run is the Gade Valley 12 on Sunday week.  A few Buzzers have been at these well organised runs before, they rightly have a good reputation for training runs for those preparing for a Spring marathon so I’m looking forward to that.

Running related, I have done a stint helping out organising the marshals at the Herts County CX champs the weekend before last, it was St Albans turn to host this year.  The venue is Verulamium Park, also the venue many of you know as the home of St Albans parkrun but a much tougher and hillier off road course, 12km for the senior men so not for the faint hearted!  Next up this coming Sunday is the same duty but this time for the club’s annual 10 mile road race, the Fred Hughes 10.  Always a sell out, in record time this year, it’s perfect for seeing how the body has recovered from the festive period and a taste of what’s to come for those starting to up the distance as marathon training gets into full swing.  I will be glad to get out of the house by Sunday, hopefully the cough that is currently annoying the hell out of me will have gone by then!

So as training goes for this year’s London attempt I have lost a complete week (having just read a couple of paragraphs back and where I wrote earlier about a 9 mile run this Saturday that has been ditched).  There will be nothing to gain and plenty to lose if I jeopardise my health and my recovery.  I can make up for missing a few miles over the next couple of months, there is plenty of time to readjust the plan.



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