Thursday, 10 March 2011


There's nothing like coming home to find a squishy parcel from one of my most favourite people in the world, patiently waiting for me.

Pretty packages contain treats from the other side of the world.

And I now have a t shirt with my sister's place of work on it. Not many people work somewhere cool enough to feature on a t shirt.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Running, running

Training for a marathon does strange things to you.

I've now got just under five weeks until the start line in Paris which in some ways can't come soon enough, but in others I'm really hoping it drags its heels like an old fat dog which doesn't want to go for a walk in the rain.

It will be nice to have my Sundays back. One thing I've certainly realised this time around is that it is practically a walk in the park to train for a marathon in the summer compared to the winter. Going out for a three hour run was much easier when it was sunny and 20 degrees, rather than drizzling and a high of two.

These past few Sunday afternoons I've stood at the window staring out into the grey, getting colder and more morose; trying to muster every ounce possible of my self motivation that is required to get out of the door and onto the footpath. Actually it's a bit like I'm now the old fat dog I just described.

Post-run brings some interesting results also. You'd think you would be really hungry after doing 18 miles, but I usually just feel nauseous for a good few hours afterwards. When I was training for Berlin my post-run dinner (once I felt I could keep it down) was Sainsbury's prawn makhani and a mini trifle. All that cream and custard sits nicely on a tender stomach. Now you also know how I became possibly the first person in history to get fat from doing a marathon...

Usually if I do a long run on Sunday, then it's not until late on Monday or Tuesday morning that the hunger really sets in. This delayed reaction means that my colleagues are subjected to my constant consumption. As a good multisporting friend of mine once put it - 'the conveyor belt of food'.

I think I also know what it might feel to be eighty now. Those hours after your return from a long run have you feeling like a skeleton. You can feel almost every single bone in your body as you attempt to move. Down onto the floor to stretch. Up off the floor to have shower. Down onto the sofa.

Why do it all then? It's a great challenge. And it's something that is just about you. It's not about beating anyone else, it's just about beating your own doubts.