Today, I’ve made the last training run before the actual race. For the remainder of the days between now and 13th September, I’m supposed to ‘rest’ the muscles and build energy for the race itself. This means some shortish walks only, to keep the joints moving and feed some work into the muscles without causing any strain or drain on energy.
So, on Wednesday, I was down to do 7 sessions of 4-minute runs and 1-minute walks; 35 minutes of exercise. I did what I’d done last week, and made a circuit of the forest loop. That’s 3.3 miles, which I covered in 35 minutes and 24 seconds. That translates into a race time of around 2 hours and 25 minutes. That’ll do for me. I’m not attempting any records; I just want to complete the course.
Today, according to the programme, I was supposed to do 10 miles. However, I’d already decided running that distance so close to the race would be a mistake for me. So I did the 10 miles, with very little trouble, last week. I decided on a little more road training, since much of my running has been in the forest, where the tracks are slightly softer underfoot even if they’re steep and rocky. I set off intending to run to village bottom and back and then do a loop in the forest to cover about 5 and a half miles in total. However, it quickly became clear that this was not a day for me to run far. My back was aching from the start and my knees, particularly the right, which suffers from wear and tear following keyhole surgery a couple of years ago, were decidedly painful. I could have run through the pain, but I was also unsteady, which suggested my energy levels were low. So, in the end, I made do with the 2.3 miles to the village bottom and back. It was enough. I suspect this was just one of those days when my biorhythms were all wrong.
In a sense, one such run was more or less inevitable during the process from training through to racing. I’m just glad that today’s poor performance is out of the way and I can now concentrate on the half marathon proper next Sunday.
One thing that 10 years with ME/CFS has taught me is to listen to my body. Today it was telling me not to overdo it. I listened.
Next Sunday I’ll set off, with 57,000 others, at around 10:40 a.m. to run a distance of 13.1 miles along roads in northeast England. The BBC will cover the event from 09:00 to 13:00. Whether I run the whole distance, alternate jogging with walking, walk for long distances, or crawl, I will complete the course.
So, wish me luck.
And, if you’re so minded, please donate to the cause I’m raising money for. I placed a poster in the local post office yesterday so that people from the village can donate if they wish. For those who missed my offer to all who give to my fundraising, I direct you to post number 50, available via this link. There you’ll discover an offer of a free eBook from my entire published range. Have a look and then, please, follow the link to the JustGiving site.
You can also buy the book detailing my experience of ME/CFS and giving advice for sufferers and their carers and families, ‘M.E. and me; Chronic Fatigue: My Recovery After 10 Years‘, by clicking the title or through the links on my ‘Published Works’ tab on this website. Half the profits go to the same charity.