The ‘long run’ is a bit like husbands and wives in west country, it’s all relative. My idea of a long run is anything over 4 miles. After football training on Wednesday it was quickly established that we had no game this week, so I had no excuses not to go for a run with our team ‘engine’, Ollie. For context Ollie is already an Ironman and competes in long distance events with scary regularity. He’s also 7 years my junior.

In desperate need for someone to balance out the spread of fitness I invited the rest of the team. The only person to take it up was ‘The Duke’. He rides to work most days and runs most nights. Not the get out I was looking for.

unnamedAfter a relatively early start we met up at the canal and headed for Odiham, a fair trot through the mists and with a goal pace of a leisurely 10 minute miles, we set off varying between 9:40 and 10:30, so not too painful. We stopped to check out the swans and have a go on a rope swing, but other than that, a gentle jog.

A series of arty photo’s of the Queens birds and then this idiot jumped in the shot! I’m surprised we didn’t find any immigrants roasting them over the flames of a burning Eurozone but it must have been the Daily Mail’s day off!


So why post? It’s the mental aspect I’m short on. On the return leg, as the bridges came into view my mind was telling me it was the final bridge before home. I should have counted them on the way out. My mind seems to constantly look for the way home once I get a certain distance. The feeling that follows when I establish that I’ve still got a way to go is a wash of energy sapping dismay.

I’m still getting the odd blister and my hip flexors really ache during and after running but I’m putting that down to mileage increase, so will keep an eye on it.

Running with the others made a huge difference. Slowly plodding on ahead of me did make me suck it up and get on with it, but once I know I’m on the home straight that’s me done. So, what do you do when you know you’ve got more in the tank, but the head says ‘warm shower / sandwich’? How do you keep going?

Best suggestion gets the satisfaction of knowing they got me around the 26 miles of Paris.