On the face of it it’s been a pretty good week, I’ve done all the training. It’s been tough though. I’m finding it increasingly difficult to wake up, get out and do my run before work. It becomes a vicious circle though because the more time you invest thinking how hard it is to get out, the harder it becomes and the less you look forward to it. The weird thing is, as soon as I’m going I never have a problem carrying on, it’s just getting going. I’m annoying myself because I really do enjoy the training, but there is that 10 second window when the alarm pings at 6:15. Do I jump out of bed and get going, or do I lie in bed and chunner to myself about just having an extra 5 minutes in bed? At the same time, I’m really doubting myself on the time target I set. It’s 1hr25 faster than last time. It’s too hard and I can’t do it.

For the past 6 weeks, my week has looked roughly speaking like this:

Day Session
Mon Cycle/Run
Tues Run to work
Weds Cycle/Run
Thur Run to work
Fri Cycle/Run
Sat Long run
Sun Swim

I’ve added in some yoga (I love this now and would really recommend it to anyone out there, particularly runners) and the occasional circuit session. It’s a tough plan. I try to do all the mid week stuff before work and the longer those sessions get the earlier I have to get up. This week I really struggled on both Wednesday and particularly Friday. So much so that on Friday I got up and just decided not to do the run. Part way through the ride I decided I’d just run at lunchtime instead. Crucially, it wasn’t raining when I made this decision. Come lunchtime at work it was, predictably, pouring down. I very nearly put this off again, but some sensible advice from Pilla made me see sense. I described this as like Superman III. It’s pretty much Good Neil versus Evil Neil each time I go out at the moment and it feels like I have to get thrown into the car crusher to remind myself how much I actually enjoy doing this.

Note: my running tights are actually black.

So back to Friday. It’s pouring down with rain, it’s windy and cold and I don’t want to go. I have forgotten my socks. My feet are going to be freezing (I have Reynauds which means the slightest breeze and my hands and feet give up attempting to be warm and just shut down. Quitters). And yet, as soon as I get going I love it. The wind is behind me for the first mile or so and it feels like I’m flying. I LOVE it. The 30 minutes goes really quickly and even though I can’t feel my feet at the end I still enjoy it. It felt like no effort at all. And I look at my watch and the run was exactly the pace I want to do in the marathon in 10 weeks. 7:20 minute miles. Maybe I can do this after all?

That 30 minute run after 30 minutes on the bike? Well I did a lot of 30 minute runs during the IM training too. I always *always* wanted to get to 4 miles in it, but never quite managed it. This week, I hit that mark twice. Progress! When I did it on Monday I did a little celebratory run dance, until a bloke walked round the corner and saw me and I promptly realised what I was doing and stopped!

I was supposed to complete the second of my running tests at Salford Uni this week but due to a broken treadmill it got cancelled. I swapped this round to do a run that @vivslack was organising for Get Out and Give. Due to a couple of people dropping out and me not wanting to run further than 5km because of my long run on Sunday, it turned out I was the only entrant in the 5km category and therefore won the first race of my running career!

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Today I did a 17 mile run (with my very fetching fuelling belt/elastic band) in 2:16. This is pretty much the fastest I’ve ever averaged for a long run and it was lovely to get outside in the sun for the whole 2 hours. Loved it.

Finally, I set up my Virgin Money Giving page this week, it’s here: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/NeilWilkinson. I’m raising money for the MS Society and I’ll love you forever if you consider donating. Oh and extra finally, before I forget, I added this thing on the blog that let’s you sign up for email updates if I add a post. If you want to you can sign up below. Thanks for reading!

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