After Spitfire I thought I would keep on the high wave I felt and really get into my training. I had the day after the Spitfire weekend off, I think that was justified but, I was back at club on the Tuesday. My club run didn’t go as planned, I was not strapped up and my leg cramped, it was uncomfortable and I was back to being frustrated with this whole running lark.
I knew I had to for in a large training run for the half marathon and I just felt I was on the back foot.
I went to the gym Wednesday morning, slightly deflated and puzzled as to why I cold not even get to 5k without having to walk.
I didn’t want the pity party so I decided to focus on strength and listen to my trainer, who is one of the most positive people I know. I had a good workout with lots of back and core exercises. During this time I realised that I could do it, that it was down to me and my mind set. After all, this time 2 years ago running did not even cross my mind and here I am planning to run 13.1 miles in a months time. So until the end of the school break I am concentrating on getting things right, balancing my nutrition, making sure I am hydrated and not copping out at the first hurdle, I hope the rest will fall into place thereafter.
Thursday I set out to do a long run/walk, the aim was 15 miles. Despite the heat I was ok and made sure I had water with me. My dear friend and I decided that the spitfire route would be a good idea as we knew it well and knew the distance. The first lap was fine but due to the heat I had drunk all my water, well that was not planned well! A quick pitstop to the cafe for a ribena and water to put in our bags and we were off again. The start of the second lap was ok, just ok, my legs regretted the pitstop and were heavy. A small trot and walk got them moving again but they felt tight. Tight but I was still moving and that was the main thing. The walk run continued until the bottom of Ingrebourne Hill, I took in some water and looked at my watch, it read 10 miles. Almost the furthest I had ever gone, my longest was 11 miles. I jogged for a bit and then walked up the hill, about halfway up I started to feel dark and really breathless, and I mean really breathless not just walking up the hill type of breathless. I tried to ignore these feelings but a split second later I knew what was happening, I was having a panic attack, I felt claustrophobic despite being out in the open. I tried to do my usual calming techniques but the more I tried the more I felt that I could not calm, looking at my heart rate it had rocketed. My friend made a comment about being near the top and then she realised I had slowed to a crawl over her shoulder she asked if I was ok. I undid the buckle of my bag and as I did not want to distress her (or make me look like a fool) I gasped out a breathless yes.
At the top of Ingrebourne Hill are a set of stones, it is almost a done thing that you take a selfie at the top but all I wanted to do was sit on them for a moment and get my heart rate, that was still racing, to an acceptable level. I plonked myself on the stones and drank my water ribena mix, heaven I thought. I explained to my friend that I was having breathing issues, keeping the panic attack to myself, I drank some more and once my heart rate was under 100 I stood up. I explained to my friend what had happened not he way down from the hill, she reasoned it was because I started to worry about the 10 miles and I think on reflection she was right. The rest of the route was cut short, I couldn’t face the farmers fields again and my feet, legs and even hands were sore (hands were very swollen). I was gutted that I couldn’t get to 15 miles but I was pleased I did my longest distance to date.
I managed to get home in one piece and have a salt bath catching the bike and run parts of the Olympic Triathlon, Brownlee brothers truly epic, and maybe due to tiredness I was slightly weepy seeing them get gold and silver.
I need to focus and get my mind right for the next long run.