Monday, 31 October 2011

H is for HAPPY HALLOWEEN everyone!

In aid of Halloween, I’m going to run 6 miles today and look really scary at the end; my face will be bright red, there will be rolls of sweat dripping from my chin and I will be wearing spandex… oh, actually, that’s how I usually look… unfortunately!
            Last week I had the wo-man flu. It was awful (though not as bad as when my husband had it obviously). But now I am back, bouncing around the house and waiting for a break in the weather so that I get outside and pound the pavements. You know the old saying ,’ feed a cold…’ I took that literally. I ate more carbs last week than I did when I was training for my half marathon. So I have high expectations of my six miler today!
            While I am waiting (very impatiently) for the deluge to stop, I will deliver the next instalment of the runners A-Z. Here comes L-Q. Enjoy x
Good things about running- HURRAH!
Bad things about running- BOO!
My top 3 running tracks for women are:
Fighter: Christina Aguilera (think about running past anyone who has ever annoyed you – ha)
Dirty: Christina Aguilera  (imagine you’re a Pussycat Doll- everyone does it, don’t be ashamed)
We will rock you; Queen (use the three beat on this to set your pace)
… oh, and LMFAO’s ‘Shufflin’’ but YOU MUST shuffle when it’s on. It’s the law! 
Remember them? The hill that you almost died running to the top of? The first mile marker where you got cramp the first time you ever ran? The bush you peed into at mile 3? Ah, the good times. Remember those when you’re running 13 miles and everything hurts… it will remind you of how much you have achieved and might trick you into thinking that you can achieve even more!
You’ll have some! The usual ones- abs, calfs, thighs etc will take on new definition then one day you’ll look in the mirror and see muscles that you didn’t even know you had emerging from the great mountain of spandex. When that amazing occasion arrives, wear your spandex all day just so that everyone can have the benefit of seeing your marvellous muscles (people might complain that you smell if you ran in said spandex first but they are simply jealous of your muscular physique- ignore them!)
If you can run a5K/10K/half marathon/ marathon, you can do anything! Go on then, what are you waiting for?
It can’t get GPS if you’re standing too close to the house. If you stop for a drink/ wee in a bush, it tries to end your workout, if you go too slow the voice gets stroppy (it’s not just my imagination, honest) if you go too fast it doesn’t register your pace… it has more faults than a tectonic plate.
Why bother? Who cares how fast you run? You’re out there, at one with the world, getting healthy, burning calories and releasing those all-important endorphins.
I suffer from a lack of motivation. In that, sometimes I can’t be motivated to lift my arse from the comforts of the sofa! These days though, I do get narky if I don’t run and I make sure that I have time to run even if I don’t really want to. So perhaps I’m moving in the right direction. Maybe this time next year I will need to run like I need oxygen i.e. I cannot live without it! A girl can hope!
New clothes/shoes/running gadgets
Running gives you the opportunity to shop. Not for normal, boring things like coats and handbags but really, really cool stuff like high visibility woollen hats (who knew that you needed one?), she-wee’s (don’t have one, honest) and fanny packs (enough said). And that’s BEFORE we get into super-duper watches that do everything short of actually running FOR you.
And if anyone complains about how much these gizmo’s and gadgets cose, you simply reply, ‘You cannot put a price on having a long and healthy life.’ Ha! Ha!

Nipples There is a strong chance that your nipples might actually rub off during your training. Don’t say you weren’t warned!
Nutrition I’m beginning to realise that nutrition is actually important- weird huh. I’ve tried running 13 miles a few hours after eating fish and chips, I’ve tried a long run the morning after the big, boozy night before… sadly it doesn’t work very well. Sucks!
Other runners
They’re positive, they are happy, they love to share stories about running thirty six miles in the howling wind and driving rain- or maybe that’s just the other runners I know and love. When you’re feeling tired and lacking motivation, speak to other runners and try to absorb some of their positive mental attitude. If all else fails, look out for them when you are running: as they bound past you, feel your competitive streak burning… then GO FOR IT! Blast on past them (make sure you hide when you’re hyperventilating around the next corner though, otherwise it could be embarrassing!)
Over-training. Yes, this apparently is possible and can lead to all kinds of nasty diseases, culminating in your bottom muscles contracting for 8 hours solid- imagine how painful that would be! All the more reason to take a well deserved nap and snack break!
Positive mental attitude
My biggest stumbling block: when it’s raining, and I’m hurting, and someone drives past in a warm, dry car, I tend to feel a bit depressed and resentful. I remind myself that I too have a driving license- technically I could drive 13 miles instead of running it- and I could stay dry and warm at the same time. But then I remind myself that there would be NO fun at all in driving (whilst listening to the radio… with the heating on…) and I return to my A-Z or I look for something/ someone to laugh at… this usually puts me in the right frame of mind to continue!   
Pregnancy. Running is like pregnancy: during this ‘special time’ you can eat what you want, bitch and moan about what you want. When you are tired, people understand why and make special dispensations for you. Your body becomes more and more knackered then, at the end, you go through heaps and tones of excruciating pain for one glorious, life affirming moment. (The only difference is, your moment won’t keep you awake at night by screaming louder than you ever thought possible!)
Pain Stock up on the ibuprofen- you’ll need it!
Quotes- running ones
“I don’t think you’re ready for this.” My Mum when she found me lying on the kitchen floor covered in bags of frozen veg (I’d only run 3 miles!)
‘Running is the least attractive sport in the world- and that includes sumo wrestling!’
‘I’m a runner- I run to the car, to the toilet, to the living room when the phone rings. I deserve a medal too!’ My friend (who is definitely NOT a runner!)
‘Really? You’re running? In the rain? At 9 am on a Sunday? Really? REALLY?’ Cue ‘crazy’ look!
"In running, it doesn't matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, 'I have finished.' There is a lot of satisfaction in that."
-Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder (Kelly’s addition to this: Thank God it doesn’t matter where you finish… I came 678th in a race of 700 people recently- most of the runners were double my age! )
"The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start."
-John Bingham (And the courage to wear spandex and a fanny pack!)

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