Well I've had quiet a break from running and from looking after myself. Life, a shed load of excuses and a few extra pounds have taken over recently. I find once I start eating bad food and drinking too much alcohol it's very hard to stop but I behaved myself on Thursday and Friday and on Saturday I was determined to get back out there and run. I know lots of people are struggling at the moment, but I still don't understand why it's so difficult to find the time and inclination to do something you know will make you feel good, yet so easy to reach for the cake tin which you know will only add to your woes!!
Needing something uplifting I decided to go up to the beacons and headed off feeling happy to be doing something for me. The first ten minutes were great until my pathway was completely blocked by nettles, thistles and grasses that reached my shoulders so I had to stop and, instead of heading back, I climb a steep bank to get to the next path (literally hands and knees climbing), which resulted in me getting stung by nettles and getting grass arrows in my socks and trainers which had to be removed before I could go any further. I re-started on the uphill but had lost the fun at this stage, thinking of Noaky12 I had a walk, tried again, had another walk, tried again etc. etc .etc. and eventually reached the top of the hill, annoyed at myself for having stopped so many times, and feeling really drained. Noaky's been struggling recently and its her determination that made me decide to get off the sofa and I wasn't going to let her down. (Isn't it strange how we get inspired by people on this forum we have never met). From here I join the South Downs Way where the long slog up the hill was rewarded with stunning views, that got the smile back on my face together with a few welcome drops of rain to cool me down. I ran along the field, past the beacons until I reached the gate being guarded by a herd of cows then down towards the farm with sheep in the fields on both sides, as the rain turned from pleasant to heavy. Reached the down hill and no more animals so eventually let Lucy dog back off the lead. Rain shower over, I reached the valley and more long grass and nettles. At around 8km I was contentedly exhausted, soaking wet and couldn't face running another hill so I took a steady walk towards home to recover. I had already been out for a 2.5hr forest walk so not finishing the whole run was OK, at least I had been out.
Sunday, I was rewarded for my effort with pleasantly aching limbs, just enough to reassure that I had done something, but not enough to be "ouch" painful, perfect for me. If anyone else is struggling to get out and run, I say just go out and see what happens, it will make you feel better. I'm now motivated to carry on.