A couple of months ago an email came round the office asking hardy souls if they fancied signing up to take part in the Brighton half marathon, an event that was due to take place on 17 February. Although that only left me with around six weeks of training time, not to mention the fact that I’d never run more than about five miles on a treadmill let alone out on the open road, I signed up on the spot. After all, I’d been a regular gym goer for a couple of years now and was keen to put my hard work into actual practice somehow. Besides, it was for a good cause and six weeks is plenty of time, so I thought! Three other employees signed up. There are nearly a hundred in our office. Clearly this wasn’t going to be one for the faint hearted!
My charity of choice was Shelter, because whilst I would certainly be getting cold training up and down Brighton seafront, there were thousands of others less fortunate than me who would have to suffer this particularly cruel winter on a much more long-term scale.
And boy, has it been cold (and tough). Upon receiving my training plan from Riptide running guru Jim and having tried out a couple of his grueling leg sessions (involving about ten minutes of solid adductor and abductor work outs), I decided it was time to get outside, a little over four weeks to go until race day. The First Run, one that saw me huffing and puffing my way out to Hove Lagoon and back, a distance of just over five miles, certainly took it out of me and my first thought upon returning was ‘what have I signed up for?!’ But along with that pain and disbelief was a sense that I had taken the first step on the road to actually completing my first half marathon.
Fast-forward to the present day, 13 February, just five days to go until the off. I completed my final training run, a distance of just over six miles, on Monday evening and am endevouring to eat well and get plenty of rest between now and Sunday. In case you were wondering, yes I have managed to complete a (pretty much) full-length trial run. It was boring, it was cold and I thought my legs were going to fall off afterwards. My training was put on hold whilst a blanket of white enveloped the UK and eager to get back to the task of running, I made myself sick for several days after an ill-advised jog in wind, sleet, rain and snow.
But for all of this it’s been a worthwhile journey, one which is oh so very near to its completion. I intend to enjoy a gargantuan roast dinner afterwards and look forward to sharing a detailed account of the day itself!
This post was written by Oli,
Follow him on Twitter (@olirobertson85)