Tag Archives: running

Day 5: back in the game…

Slippage after a good start. I had intended to run on Saturday but the combination of working away in Inverness, sub zero temperatures and more fun things to do in hotel rooms, restaurants and even the town hall saw that plan thoroughly defenestrated.

A Monday off is always a chance to run around and do everything I normally can’t get out of the office for. I’ve been meaning to give blood for the last four months but failed until today.

Obviously, I think everyone who gives blood is wonderful but I walked into the middle of scores of students donating for the very first time. Teenagers were getting flipped upside down every 30 seconds as they passed out. One poor lass had a brief spasm as her blood pressure dropped too low and four more students keeled over like dominoes, getting a rollercoaster look at their toes.

I’ve been lucky enough to just get a bit woozy after my donations, but clearly running anywhere was a bit of a daft idea. I did, however, buy a second hand mountain bike that I can wheel around town without anxiety, unlike my racer.

So I did do some exercise today, riding my new bike around the Meadows, up a few slopes and – grinning inanely – freewheeling down the writhing steepness of the Mound down towards Leith. Roughly three miles of pure, new bike joy.

WEATHER Baltic

EXERCISE Short, hilly cycle

PACE freewheeling

REWARD homemade curry and naan with an old schoolfriend visiting from Barcelona

FEELING breathless

First run of 100 – nearly foiled by ice

At the very last minute I got out of bed, pulled on my running kit and legged it out of the door before my mind could backflip again. I had gone to sleep planning a route and determined to stick to my plan of running in the morning, whatever the weather. But then I woke up in my cosy bed to the radio warning me of ice everywhere.

I lay in bed, torn between the need to get up and run around and the urge to snuggle with my two cats, from 6am until 7.30am. I had decided running could wait until after work, reasoning the ice would have melted by then, twice – before reminding myself I am ALWAYS too knackered after work to run anywhere.

 The clock has started ticking down today. If I’m to have any chance to make it round this marathon I have to put in the work. So, with snowflakes drifting around my face, I braved the first day of the Edinburgh spring with as much bounce as I could muster.

After the shame of running over Leith Walk – one of the city’s busiest streets – in my pink leggings, hat and gloves, I made it to the isolation of Calton Hill and faced down my first challenge. The path goes up a steep hill and I know I cannot run to the top of it without stopping – yet.

I made it up as far as the third lamppost before my heart threatened to pop and I had to walk, but only until the next lamppost, when I started running again and made it to the top. Hopefully this is one thing I can work on gradually building up until I can make it to the top  in one.

Having reached St Andrew’s House on the other side and checked out the snow-flecked peak of Arthur’s Seat, I began a slower ascent back around Calton Hill to my starting point. Feeling surprisingly energised after a mile, I decide to extend my route through a small park on London Road. I wound around the undulating footpaths and add another easy mile to the route. Just time to shower, grill a bacon sandwich and make some fresh espresso before heading to work…

WEATHER: ice, light snow, cold

TRAINING: hilly running

MILES: two

PACE: easy

REWARD: bacon

FEELING: good