5 things I’ve learnt from running

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5 things I’ve learnt about running…

1) In Manchester you can get all 4 seasons over 15 miles. I found this out in the middle of a very windy hailstorm with the sun cracking the flags. The 10 minutes of torrential rain (from which my feet were still squelching in my trainers) paled into insignificance as the hail hammered down on me and a man going past in a white van, hung out of the window and shouted ‘Go oooooooooooon!!’. Of course the icing on the cake was that I was going uphill at the time. On the plus side, I felt an even greater sense of achievement than usual when I finished – and there was a double rainbow, it was a bit movie-esque – I was like Wonderwoman, Hermione Granger and Jess Ennis all rolled into one 🙂

2) Having a plan really helps. I know lots of people train without but for me, the combination of family, friends, work, social life (occasionally) and all the boring things in life – the big shop and mopping the kitchen floor, means that without a plan I think I would be scuppered. Matt from Running Adventures has given me a plan that fits around all my ‘stuff’. It’s flexible, manageable and builds up bit by bit. Aside from the plan, Matt has answered all of my questions along the way – no matter how daft they may seem. Alongside running I am completing sets of core exercises and pylometrics and am not only running further but I’m actually getting faster – which is nothing short of a miracle. (www.runningadventures.co.uk)

3) Parties should come with a health warning. We went to the birthday party of a friends’ four year old daughter – what a great party that was for everyone there. Erm…. Except maybe for me! I offered to make the tea and coffee for parents – mainly because I had my eye on the homemade flapjacks in the kitchen 😉 Anyway, as I was making them I didn’t use the huge urn – this was because I am clumsy. There are no two ways about it. I break things regularly. Therefore I used the kettle. I filled the teapot. I filled the kettle again and whilst making the coffee – poured the boiling water all over my hand. Well to cut a long story short I spent the next hour in the disabled toilet, with my hand in a sink full of cold water, in my bra (I had a crazy hot flush) and I couldn’t then do my long run home as planned.

4) Give yourself a break. My plan has scheduled rest days which are so important but in addition to this I have come to realise that although running is very important to me, sometimes life takes over and plans have to change. It’s not always possible to stick to the plan – and that’s ok. Also, whilst eating right is important, having the occasional cinnamon swirl or glass of red isn’t going to end your running career.

5) Persevere. There are days when I’m not as fast and I don’t know why. There are days I have to stop and walk for 30 seconds and those when I feel like I am flying. There are days when I really don’t want to go – and others that I can’t wait to get started. There are days every mile drags and days I could do it all again. What matters is to keep going. To go again. To go.

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