The Misery of Colds and the Joy of Streaking………..

*Brushes away the dust and cobwebs and settles down* Well, what can I say! It’s been a while since I’ve updated. Most of November was a write off as I came down with an evil cold! I had my first ever DNS (did not start) for an event! I was due to run in the Derwentwater 10 for the first time but my cough had settled on my chest and I couldn’t walk 10 yards, let alone run 10 miles, without having a severe coughing fit. I went along to support the other half and it was great to see him achieve another PB.

I went for 10 days without running – the longest time since 2010. I was thoroughly miserable as running is a great stress reliever for me. As the cough lingered on (as it still is!!), the need to get out for a run was overwhelming and so I headed out the door for a steady plod on the 10th November. It was less than 4 miles but it felt great to get out once more. After that, I did a couple of interval sessions on the treadmill, including some barefoot sessions. I naturally run on my toes when I don’t wear shoes and it feels more effortless. I’d like to adapt to a more forefoot running style but I know not to rush it in order to avoid injury.

I also decided not to enter the Brampton 10 miler. Instead, I went out for a steady 8 miles with Ali. It felt good to get a longer run in and it didn’t feel as bad as I was expecting. I worry about losing fitness when I go even a short time without running! After the run, I again went to support the other half as he absolutely annihilated his Derwentwater 10 PB  by achieving a brilliant time in the Brampton Road Race.

The first club run in a month that I dragged myself to was, inevitably, a hill session! My quads were screaming as I’d been up and round Sale Fell on the Monday. Still, it was a good session and my legs worked better that expected!

November ended much better than it began with a hilly 10.6 miler. It was an absolutely perfect morning for a run and we managed to keep a good steady pace, despite the hills!

For December, I decided to do an Advent Streak. The idea was suggested by another runner on the RMR Facebook group. The Advent Streak means running every day from the 1st December through to Christmas Day. I decided to do a minimum of 1 mile each day as it’s a distance I know I can sneak in, however busy I may be!

I started off the streak with a slow recovery plod on the treadmill. Monday’s run was much better as I once again headed to Sale Fell. I followed a figure of 8 type route so that I ascended the summit of Sale Fell twice. Hard work but I love this little hill and the challenges it provides me. I even managed to take 2 minutes off my previous best time for this route. My lungs and quads were burning but it felt wonderful to be out running consistently again!

Descending Sale Fell. Photo courtesy of Tristan Reid

Descending Sale Fell. Photo courtesy of Tristan Reid

Yesterday, I met up with Ali in Caldbeck and we tackled a hilly 9 mile route. The hill leading out of Caldbeck goes on for eternity and is brutally steep. The going was very slow but we ran the whole damn way! As we turned left out of the junction, we were blasted with the most horrific headwind. Out on the common, there was no hiding from it. With heads down, we just kept moving one foot in front of the other. It was awful. If I was on my own, I would have been very tempted to just throw in the towel. Having Ali there to support me ensured that we made it the whole way! The hot chocolate and mince pie that I treated myself to once I arrived home tasted all the better knowing that I’d truly earned it!

Looking bleak as I head into Caldbeck. We ran back up this hill!!

Looking bleak as I head into Caldbeck. We ran back up this hill!!

This morning, I managed to sneak in a mile run before taking the girls to school. I was feeling quite down after watching a piece about Dementia on BBC Breakfast news. It seemed to describe my dad exactly and it was heartbreaking to see the man’s wife absolutely devastated by her husband’s rapid decline through this evil disease. The best thing to do was to just go out and blast a mile. And that’s what I did! My head was clear as I pounded the road thinking of nothing more than controlling my breathing as my lungs burned with the effort. When I finished the mile, I felt a lot better. Running is great medicine!

Running is good for the soul!

Running is good for the soul!

So far, my legs are holding up as I continue the run streak. Because I went for the 10 mile run on the 30th November, I have ran for 10 days in a row! My longest run streak ever! I am making sure I stretch off well each day and continue doing a little yoga routine each evening. Hopefully this will enable me to carry on with the streak until Christmas..

And so, that’s me up to date at last and I will endeavour to keep it that way!

Sale Fell. Photo Courtesy of Alison McKie

Sale Fell. Photo Courtesy of Alison McKie

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