The End is Nigh

Here it is at last – my last week of ‘proper’ marathon training. In other words, my last week of increasing mileage before the taper, when I gradually cut it down to give my legs a rest before the big day.

After last week’s lack of long run, I had good intentions for this final week. Unfortunately the boiler had other ideas, and my diary was already full of British Gas engineer’s appointments, and men coming to quote for a new boiler (sssh – don’t tell the old boiler. Its only just hanging on to life by its toenails and the news its going to be replaced might just push it over the edge).

So no running on Monday.

On Tuesday I was delighted when my final ‘man’ left at 12.15 and I thought “I can run!!”, but then realised I hadn’t eaten since 7.30am, and I needed to go to Sainsburys as well. So quick lunch, speedy trip to the supermarket and still fitted in a quick-ish 5.5 miles. managed to arrive back just before the school bus arrived in the village so my children were excused the embarrassment of a bus full of their peers seeing their Mum in running gear.

On Wednesday an engineer was due to arrive between 12 and 2 to fit the part that would fix the boiler (hooray!!), although I had begged him to be as late as possible. I stuffed porridge into my face at 7.30am, got the children out of the door for their bus, rollered my calf muscles, sprayed Deep Heat liberally (sorry cats!), grabbed water and gels and made it out the door by 8.25am.

Around 16 miles later I was heading back into the village and it was just before 12.00. I really wanted to run further, but I really REALLY didn’t want this engineering saviour to get to the house before I did, and then go away again. So I did what any sensible, desperate-for-heat-and-hot-water marathoner-in-training runner would do, I ran into the house (in my very muddy trainers – oops) to see if he’d rung yet and left a message. He hadn’t, so I took the chance to run another mile and check back again.

Still no sign of him, so I ran up and down the lane by the house so I could see if his British Gas van came up the lane. By 19.1 miles it was twenty five past twelve and I chickened out and decided not to push my luck any further, so I called it a day. I shot inside and had the quickest shower ever as I was convinced that as soon as I stepped into the hot water the doorbell would go.

Typically, he finally rang me at quarter to two and said he’d be delayed as he had to go and help a colleague. Pffst! So I could have finished my first ever (training) twenty mile run, however I am still glad I made it to 19 miles, as I know I could have staggered on for another mile.

So that’s the last long run done. I’m very glad that’s it, as I am very tired and my legs have been twinging and moaning. I have discovered I can hear their complaining less if I stuff them into my compression socks, although its hard work getting them on and off again! I just hope I’ve done enough this time. A friend did point out I’ve managed much more training than last year, however last year’s target was just to make it to the finish line. This year I have a time to beat!

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