This is the conclusion I have come to after running over 24 miles in 6 days in appalling weather when the week before I ran around 6 miles in relatively nice weather. Yes, I know the advice to only increase by 10% etc, but we couldn’t go climbing. Plus walking in the mountains in the pouring rain is a sweaty and boring experience. So, we spent the week’s holiday running. HOLIDAY and RUNNING in the same sentence. You saw that to, ye?
We ran around various parts of Wales and the Peak District in weather which can only be described as “shitting it down” (to use the vernacular). I’m talking horizontal rain. The type of rain where you get soaked in the 30 seconds it takes you to walk from the front of the van to the back. The type of rain where you run past people out for their ML training and they look pissed off and soaked through while only being 500 yards from the car park. The type of rain where locals smile and say “nice day for it” as you jog past in lycra and a not-quite-as-it-was-sold-to-you “waterproof” jacket.
During our runs I got blown over, I fell over, I bum slid down a hill (not intentionally) in mud and poo, I ran through so much poo…….., lots of poo (mainly sheep poo if you are interested in that kind of thing), I ran through ankle deep mud, I ran through excruciating hip pain (30% of my body is covered in tattoos so I’m no wimp with pain), I ran past lots of cute lambs while doing a noise which my husband refers to as the “she’s seen a very small baby animal” noise (apparently there are levels of squeak I emit which directly correlate to the size of animal), I ran past lots of people out walking who looked at me as if I was emitting a puzzling vapour and I did it 4 days in a row with a rest day (nice) and then a big old 13k to finish it off on the 6th day. To be fair, on the 13k day I “moaned a lot” per my husband, but he moaned each time I suggested running in the rain and his jacket is actually waterproof so fare’s fare.
For reference, last year I spent a lot of time sitting on the sofa drinking red wine (too much red wine) while telling myself it was too cold, wet, hot, rainy, Sunday, cloudy or sunny to run outside. For me to run day after day on the sheet rain is a bit of a turning point. It also proves that if I want to I will do something and if I don’t want to I won’t. This logic applies to anything and everyone. If you want to move house you will, if you want to apply for a new job you will, if you want a puppy you will get one and so forth and so on. I have proven to myself that I am already more capable than I thought and that I can achieve anything if I put my mind to it which is good news considering I’m running 30 miles in August.
My friends I do apologise in advance, but my advice for 2017 is probably only going to consist of “well, if you want to I am sure you will”. If you are seeking alternative advice then give me a heads up and we’ll play the game over some coffee and cake.