Four-Miler to Mile End.
So… Guess who ran their first four miler today? Guess! GUESS!
Dahahahahaaa! That’s right, I did. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t this energetic immediately post-run. In fact I didn’t even manage a victory dance of any sort. I just kind of glared at Bangs for making me run an extra half a block to get back to the start point.
On Friday, after Boot Camp 1.2 (week 1, session 2), Bangs offered to run with me for my Sunday long run. I thought instead of doing my usual routine of running around near where my parents live, giving up far too often, and yelling abuse at my brother, that I would take Bangs up on her offer and called her on Saturday night to arrange everything.
Fab. So, she said we’d do a morning run. As I’m trying to get my early morning groove on now I have this training schedule, I agreed, and when Bangs suggested a 10am start, I suggested an 8:45am meet time and a 9am start.
What really happened is that I woke up at 8:30am and inhaled a bowl of Weetabix (I have mine with honey, what do you have on yours?), washed and threw on my running uniform (I’m still resolutely calling it that). It was like minus four million degrees this morning and I managed to twist my ankle falling off the kerb as I ran laps round my car, spraying de-icer wildly at the windows and scraping off a thick layer of frost. I then got lost on the way to meet Bangs and ended up being almost an hour late. However, that didn’t mean we were cutting any time off our run.
The night before, on the phone to Bangs, I said I was aiming to do two miles, but could probably stretch to three miles, and as long as she didn’t tell me what she was doing, she could trick me into running more. I fully believe that sometimes ignorance is bliss. If I had set out to do four miles this morning, I would have cracked and walked more than I ran.
We basically ran from Westham to Mile End and back. Now, there’s nothing really exciting near where my parents live, but let me tell you what we saw this morning…
The first thing I spotted was a pool of dark brown syrupy liquid that was on the edge of the pavement, spilling over the edge of the curb and spread about a foot into the road. It took me a while to realise that it was blood. No dead man in sight but I definitely vommed a bit in my mouth at this point.
The next thing we came across was a substantial amount of actual vomit on the pavement. Bangs kind of went “weeerrr-oooaaahhhh” and I grabbed her arm and yanked her to get us round it whilst clamping my jaws shut and swallowing the second bit of my own sick. (I should probably mention that I feel nauseous 99.9% of the time when I run so it doesn’t take a lot to throw me over the edge).
The letchy men deserve a shout out. We encountered three fine specimens this morning. I’m telling you, nothing makes you think ‘husband material’ more than an unwashed middle aged man leering at you, saying “hey sexy lady” as you jog past, holding your breath so you don’t catch their lurgies. They do make you run a bit faster to get rid of them though.
There weren’t a great deal of people out at just-past-ten this morning, but there were like a BASPILLION runners. It dawned on me that we are still in the ‘New Year Resolution Mission Get Fit’ period though and a lot of people are also training for the London Marathon and other runs this Spring. Still, that’s a lot of Lycra for a Sunday morning. Yay for you if you did your long run today though! Did you see @RunDemCrew’s callout to the masses to get up and get the week’s long run done?
Anyway, just as it was getting super tough on the way back from Mile End, Bangs said there was something good coming up. I panicked, thinking she was being sarcastic, and expected her to make me run up a steep hill over a flyover. Not so. We came up to a bus stop with the Nike #MAKEITCOUNT campaign poster featuring Mo Farah. I yelled “Mo!” like he was an old friend and it kept me going for another hundred metres. Similarly, a billboard with the Megan Fox for Armarni Code advertisement kept me distracted for a full minute until we had run past it (that new short bob and fringe is hot on her, non?). Last, but not least was the Mastercard advert with the slogan “PRICELESS LONDON”. That made me smile. There’s nothing quite like living in London. And running through it is always entertaining.
Bangs and I finished our run with tea, toast and talks about running and life. As much as she joked on Twitter about distracting me with “unicorns and rainbows” her company and brilliant conversation kept me well entertained and she kept me focused when I needed help. Bangs has taken on a mentoring role to coach me and many others and I bombard her with running questions all the time. She is an asset to my life!
I also had a great chat with Charlie Dark (Run Dem Crew founder and general OG) and got some great advice about my attitude to running and doing this half marathon. There’s nothing like a healthy dose of perspective to get you rolling.
I drove over to my mum’s afterwards for that hot bath I promised myself. I saw a boy jogging up Shooters Hill on the way. WTF?! He was like NINE and he was in a tracksuit and running trainers. What a little G.
Anyway, enough of being talky and boring you senseless. Here’s something for you: