Tidy Ticker. Tapering. No Parade.

I’m going running in the morning. A nice gentle 20km and back by 9am for a late breakfast.

If you’d told me eight weeks ago I’d be running even 2km I would have gone slightly pale at the thought.

For those of you who don’t know the background to this it’s nothing earth-shattering but I spent a large chunk of June and July on antibiotics for pleurisy and bronchitis. Any runners reading this will know that anything of a vaguely upper respiratory nature is not a good thing to throw into the running mix.

*insert apology to anyone who already knows this stuff here*

A few weeks prior to getting sick I entered the Cape Town marathon to give me something to work towards over the winter. I had a half-hearted training plan in the back of my mind and I figured with a bit of luck and a following wind I should be ready in time for September 20th.

Then I got sick and wiped out about five weeks from the plan.

Oh joy.

In a moment of drug-addled weakness I revised the plan and ramped it up a little. My intention was that I’d make a bit of a song and dance about it all, make a valiant attempt for a week or two and then get sick or injured.

And yet…seven weeks later I have covered 349km and am viewing the 20km up to the top of Constantia Nek and back tomorrow morning with a modicum of disdain. I did 35km by myself last Sunday so this should be a walk in the park.

Assuming your park is hilly. And 10km long.

Of the 33 runs I should have covered by now I have managed 30. I missed one 8km run because the weather was so foul I thought I might get sick again and I missed two 8km runs on a different week because I could feel a bit of a knee twinge. Otherwise I haven’t skipped a step. In fact I’ve even done more than planned as I always have to run a little bit further than my Garmin measurement in order to counteract the rounding-down-bastardness of RunKeeper.

So, amazingly, I find myself on the home stretch. Tapering has started, and it really is downhill to race day.

I have no idea how I will go on the actual day. I may turn an ankle tomorrow and all bets are off, who knows.

Whatever happens though, I’m proud of myself.

It’s funny. I’m forever proud of other people and their achievements but it’s very, very rare I admit to being proud of myself.

I guess this whole thing has become a bit of a big deal for me.

And once the race is over…how hard can writing a novel be…?

8 thoughts on “Tidy Ticker. Tapering. No Parade.

  1. It’s funny Adam mentions the Swedish Jantelagen every time I’m being modest, but you seem to suffer from it too, and you’re not even Swedish. People shouldn’t think “I’m not special. I don’t deserve praise etc” (which is the Jantelagen’s code and used to be deeply rooted in Swedish culture ). But I think aspiring or trying to achieve something great without being a complete jackass on your way there means that you have to stomp on the breaks sometimes. You should run up that mountain and you should write a novel! If you’re a bit like me you’ll probably have doubts. But do climb another hill and do write another chapter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s the doubts that hold me together Tobbe 🙂 But yes, it seems I share a certain amount of Swedish sensibilities with you – which is no bad thing. Will keep running and writing (and of course reading your work amongst others!) 🙂


    • Thanks Diane. My 20km today was done in an early Spring heatwave with altogether too much red wine leaking out of my pores. After that anything is possible 🙂


    • Hi Nicola – ouch, shin splints are awful, you have my sympathy! Hope the run wasn’t too taxing on them. Marathon is still in my sights – it’s a week tomorrow. Got a couple of aches and pains to deal with but I will do five miles later on and ten tomorrow morning and then a couple of leg turners during the week. Still don’t feel quite prepared but it’s all about the legs on the day! Thanks for dropping in and commenting – always good to hear from you 🙂


      • They held up ok, not a twinge so I hope they’ve blended away now. They should do, I’ve been out of commission for six months trying to get rid of them!

        Good luck for the marathon, mind over matter! I’ve found running with an audiobook rather than music gets me through the longer runs where my rebellious mind wants to stop.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Wow – six months, that’s really tough! Great tip with the audiobook – will bear that in mind. I’ve gone hardcore with a few of the longer runs this time around – no music to take my mind off anything just forcing myself to work hard when I don’t feel like it. Not sure I’ll be sticking to that regime going forward but I wanted to try something different! Hopefully there’ll be a vaguely triumphant post-marathon post next Sunday (I did this race last year and the last ten km were horrible – hit the wall big time after about 30km so I’m hoping it’ll be different this time!)


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