So yesterday was the Reading half marathon.
Another 13 mile run in the preparation for London, with the added bonus of meeting Phil and Jo for the first time (and Leighsa and Tracy, but I know them from the mountains!).
If only! I think Phil and Jo sum the race atmosphere up very well. It felt a touch strange setting out in a proper race with the intention of coming home to a pace, not in a race if you know what I mean, but London is the focus and that’s the goal.
Which makes it a double shame it all went wrong. Not the pace. Oh, no. That was perfect, if I was a little hot in the first half of the race.
No. At mile 10, my left leg started to hurt. At 11, I pulled over for a quick massage and tweak. At 12, it felt rotten, but I didn’t want to stop, my Garmin was showing 1.47.06 at 13.1 miles, my route was clearly varied (all the other garmins bleeping were at the same distance as me, so I guess they’re all reasonably consistent in calibration) and I crossed the line in 1.48 dead and 13.26 miles. 3700th place. Which made my leg giving up after I stopped all the more worrying.
The meal later was great, if tempered a little by some pain. Lots of it. And I wouldn’t want to scare Jogblog (the greatest person ever to live…putting up with all my moaning, getting out of bed at 6.00 on clock change day to come with me despite not running, everything really. Thanks, JB) but driving home is possibly the most stupid thing i’ve ever done.
The intensity of pain in my entire lower left leg made every gearchange a crunched affair, matched only by the pain in my mouth as I was grinding my teeth so hard to ensure the clutch actually went home and I didn’t use the vehicle in front as a brake. Every gearchange. With a traffic jam on both the M4 and Hangar Lane.
By Walthamstow, I was sweating. And trying to get my shoe off to have a look revealed some shaking with the pain. Ah, well, only 55 miles to home, then.
And when I got here, I honestly couldn’t even unload the car for the hurt. So I went to bed. And this morning realised i’d forgotten to eat a mince pie. Balls. But that was after i’d woken at 3 o’clock in such pain I needed some drugs. But having started to get out of bed, couldn’t move for agony, so rolled back in. Hands and knees on the floor beside your bed, in agony, not able to move for the pain getting worse isn’t a good look.
And on waking 3 hours later, took 27 minutes from starting to get up to finally arriving at the bottom of the stairs for the bandages and painkillers. I’ve broken some bones before, but nothing hurt like it.
Still, work’s work, right? So I went in. Don’t know how, but all I intended doing was turning up and going to hospital. Instead I got sucked into things, but got talking to one of the managers and he recommended a place not 400 yards from site for physiotherapy. So I popped along (well, crunched some more gears on the way down the road), found it to be a sports injuries and physiotherapy practice, went in and am booked in for 8 o’clock tomorrow morning.
At last, you’re possibly thinking. But after feeling genuinely painless on Saturday, I really don’t know what went wrong. I’m hoping they can point me in the right direction, because like this, London’s off.
I’ll update tomorrow.
Good race, but not worth that.
Well done to the others. If whatever’s wrong isn’t long term, i’m going to complete the marathon, ignoring my 3.36 dreams in return for a finish, then run below 1.40 for the Royal Parks Half to make up for things. How’s that for a mark in the sand?