Paris. My eleventh marathon and my third go at Paris. I’ve had two PBs which include my current PB of 4:12. I love the route – the city is wonderful and the parks at either end are beautiful. I even love the people who wheel their bikes/scooters/prams out into the raceway (although maybe not so much at the time).
Five months since my last running post. That was a bit of a deliberate space, to be honest. Amsterdam was so pressured and there was so much else going on, that I couldn’t blog alongside Paris as I started a new job which takes me away from home four days a week. It felt like another Thing To Do, a chore to be put on the list, and that’s not what I want running to be about. Or blogging, for that matter.
As you’ve probably seen from Instagram, I’m still running and baking! We also got a new addition to the house – Peggy the ragdoll kitten. I’m in love, dear readers. She is so adorable. Even when she’s purring into your face at 6am while standing on your neck. At the moment, she’s asleep on my legs as she’s a massive heat whore and it’s a bit chilly today. She is really beautiful too, she looks like Daryl Hannah’s character, Pris, from Bladerunner.
We went to Edinburgh for Hogmanay which was lovely until I got sick and spent ALL day in bed on January 1st. Not a great way to start the year, to be honest.
In running terms, I did Adnams 10k with some friends in a lovely leisurely 1 hour 15, I think. I was grateful because I thought the storm would cancel it, so I had a few too many pints the night before. We did drink some of the Adnams beer given out on the way round!
Going back a bit further, I had a panic attack in the middle of St Neots half marathon and had to stop to hyperventilate a bit. I’m being flippant about it now, but I worried about the worry. I think that episode was to do with stopping my anxiety medication and from starting a new job within a fortnight. I do not recommend anyone to do that, by the way. I am now on a pretty even keel and it’s all fine, although I’m still taking asthma medication. The first couple of months were horrible though, and I ended up having another panic attack during a run on Christmas Eve, where I burst into tears on Mr Charming’s shoulder. I am so thankful I have amazing friends – my running bud Hayley Hamster is awesome, and she took care of me. She didn’t let me give up. On the upside, I did Christmas Day parkrun with friends and had a lovely time.
I’ve followed the up to 55mile week P&D Training plan. It’s been tough – getting up at 5am four days (or five) a week to get in 10-12miles before work, chasing the lampposts. Sitting in a hotel bedroom eating porridge at 5.15 to run around a city that you don’t know. Getting up at 5am on a Saturday to run 17miles before parkrun. Clocking up 40-50 miles a week over five days where the rest days are the ones where you’re driving 200miles – 4hours+. Through all of this though, I’ve been getting stronger. I’ve done a 10mile race and just about equalled my half PB at Cambridge.
Three runs left. 6miles tomorrow. 7miles dress rehearsal on Wednesday with 5miles at MP – 9minutes per mile. Paris parkrun on Saturday at a very leisurely pace.
Then race day. I would absolutely love to do a sub 4. I know that, in my heart of hearts, when (and it is when, I know I am capable) I get it, I’ll almost immediately want faster.
I want my race on Sunday to be the best race I can be. Controlled, fun, enjoyable. Perhaps not entirely comfortable – I don’t want to finish like Amsterdam, as if I hadn’t done anything. I want the last three months, the last 484.2 miles to be worth it. If that means a PB, brilliant. A sub 4 – even better. 30 seconds off per mile is a big ask and I know it needs to have everything to come together to work. Each mile at a time.
Well wishes and luck, please!