Having slept on the thought of managing todays 8K, I awoke at 9:56 thinking it was about time I dragged my sorry arse out of bed and onto the streets. I cleaned my teeth, stroked Tallula the cat as I was getting my running ear prepared and started a conversation with a voice in my head. It was the voice of MyAsics Plan ;
"Ok Dan. Ready for this?"
"YOu know it's 8K today don't you?"
"Yes yes. Don't remind me"
"Bloody hell ALRIGHT! Those two things should be banned from being in the same sentence."
"Shorts or tights?"
"Shorts. Haven't you seen the temp out there? I don;t want Betty Swollocks making an appearance thank you very much!"
And with that I was downstairs drinking cranberry juice and chomping on dried apricots - to give me my energy boost. I won't lie, I've got a back strain. It's been giving me jip since Thursday and Mrs Dan rightly says it's my chair at work. It's been massaged (by Mrs Dan) and is slowly getting better but if there's anyone who is FED RIGHT UP with things affecting my being able to run well, it's me! Luckily when walking I can't feel it twingeing.
"You gonna be alright running with that back - yer big wuss?"
"I'll be fine"........"And don't call me a wuss, you sadist Half Marathon Plan you!"
I started running. Felt bloody great too. I mentally put the pace on today and found that my legs were going faster than my usual slow plod I'd perfected recently. If this was going to be a fast 8K, then I'd better put the work in early. 1K went by in a flash. I started thinking about TurboTortoise, as she is going to be my pace beeactch next week on my first ever TEN MILER! YIKES!
"Stop thinking about women" said the Plan.
"I'm preparing for next week"
"Concentrate on this run yer big ludicrous lummox!"
I did as the plan said and before long, two, then three K went by. Even got a few friendly responses to my hand greeting wave at fellow runners. At 4K some drunk men staggering along with cans of beer, and speaking in a foreign accent were up ahead trying to jump over an eight foot high brick wall. I passed them as one of them had clawed his way up and was swaying at the top. I figured that before long they'd all be sitting up on the wall swaying in a drunken haze, then one by one they'd fall to the ground, knocking themselves senseless on the road.
Before any of that happened 4K beeped on Gertie Gramin and I turned round on myself to head back the way I'd come. The loud drunken voices of the men soon faded from my earshot and I got on with rejoining the Thames path. I was beginning to droop with the heat.
"Oi, oi Savaloy!" said the Plan.
"Awww shurrrup! Not now. I'm struggling here!"
"Well slow down then!"
"I'm FU***ING boiling!"
"Has Betty Swollocks come to town?"
I had to admit that she had. Luckily beneath my shorts were some lycra compression shorts that were keeping Betty in place but the summer heat was taking it's toll. My face was pouring sweat and the front of my top was drenched and kept sticking then unsticking to my tummy. Betty was doing what they could in the circs.
"COME ON DAN! You're nearly at 5K. If you keep the pace up, you'll clock a cub 30 baby!"
That was good to hear - and then BEEEEEPY BEEEP!!! I'd clocked a 5 in 29'46. Nice one Cyril. I slowed down a tad to get myself centred and before long I was striding again, like a graceful racehorse in full flight! Betty Swollocks had resigned their fate and stayed put. Suddenly.....ahead of me was a female. A short one, but she was out on a run and she was going at some pace. I decided to try and catch her, despite her being a good 200 metres ahead of me. I turned up the pace, using this woman like a pace beeatch and before too long I'd caught up with her and was about to make a glorious overtaking manoeuvre when she turned off and went over the footbridge at Richmond Lock!
"Hahaha!! Laughed the plan.
I was on the last 100 metres, pushing as hard as I could and then BEEEEEEPY BEEEP!! Time up. I'd finished my 8K in 47:26.
"I knew you could do it really. Now go and run Betty under the tap. See you Tuesday morning."
And that dear friends is the story of my run with Betty Swollocks.
Until the next tale of hilarity.