Training resumes – Great Eastern Half Marathon, week one

GETTING back into training after a wonderful honeymoon and weeks of wedding planning has been very difficult. I started with a few easy runs, which didn’t feel easy at all, then it was time to step things up.


Training for the Great Eastern half marathon began last Monday. It was awful, utterly dreadful in fact. I did seven miles with Chris on the trans pennine trail. The 8.50 minute mile pace was hard work, and I huffed and puffed, but felt great afterwards.

On Tuesday the plan was a four mile tempo with friends, followed by a one mile faster. I set off gently up the hill on our usual route, but despite going much slower than I usually do, my body felt heavy. Half way up the hill, I wanted to stop and go home.

Thankfully, I pushed on. I got a bit further, but all the time I was having a mental battle. I wanted to stop. On the downhill section, I felt better, but my body still wouldn’t move very quickly. It felt like every muscle was resisting, particularly my right hamstring which didn’t feel happy at all.

I made it to the bottom of the loop, three miles completed. ‘You could stop here and you’ll still have done a good workout,’ I told myself. Behind me, I could hear footsteps. The others were catching me up (they’d given me a head start). I didn’t want to be overtaken, so I carried on and was overtaken anyway.

Wednesday was my former club’s annual charity relay race. It involves running a mile around Dearne Valley Park carrying a teddy bear as the relay baton. Chris and I joined forces with a lovely lady from the walk to run group, and came fourth. In total, I ran three miles and enjoyed a good night with friends.

By Thursday I was shattered, but some friends were doing a hill session so I thought I’d join in. I wasn’t fast. I was too tired from Tuesday but I went through the motions of running up and down a hill. I was about 30 seconds slower than I usually am, but I was too tired to care.

Friday was a rest day, and on Saturday I attended a writing day in Sheffield, so took another day off. I was working on my running book, after a break from that too.

By Sunday I was well rested so set off early for a long run. I did ten miles, but the last two were hard work. I’ve not run this distance for months. In the lead up to the wedding I just didn’t have time. I only managed a few miles here and there. Completing ten miles was a real shock to the system and afterwards I had to have a cup of tea and slice of cake to get over it! I had a choice of cakes from my birthday last week.

So, for a first week of training, it wasn’t bad. I’ve eased back into it, choosing to train with friends rather than on my own. I also avoided speed work, as my hamstring and muscles made it quite clear they weren’t up to it yet.

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