I'm currently training for the Brighton Marathon on April 18th, and raising some money for Water Aid in the process. This blog is my diary of the ups and downs of my training over the past few months.

I hope that you'll stick around, and please sponsor me! It's a genuinely great cause, and any encouragement and support I can get will be invaluable in keeping me going through this last stretch of training and on the day itself.

FINISHED I managed to finish the race. Thanks a lot to everyone who supported me through it.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

'I used to be able to draw diagrams on my notes...'

The doctor poked my knee a bit while I talked profusely about my ailment. He prescribed me some anti-inflammatories and instructed me to book myself in for an X-ray. He then spent 5 minutes complaining about computers and the digitising of medical records. Apparently, when a patient switches doctor's surgery, their records aren't transfered digitally, they're just printed off onto a stack of paper that no-one ever reads. So the overall Doc's conclusion was: a) things were better in the old days, and b) I don't know what's wrong with your knee.

X-ray tomorrow morning. No running for a bit, it seems. Swimming, maybe.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

What's up Doc?

I've managed a couple of 5 mile runs and a bit of a footy kickabout in the past week, but my knee's giving me some proper jip. It hurts when I walk, kneel, especially when I run, and especially after running. Headed out yesterday but I had to walk back home after about half a mile. Not cool.

My attempts at self-diagnosis were inconclusive: I found 10 different knee injuries on one running website, with solutions ranging from 'Jog it off' to 'Painful Surgery'. I'm pretty fed up with it to be honest. So I'm going to go see the Doctor later today. We'll see what he says.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Okay so I decided to take a couple of days off to rest my hurty knee, which I seem to have acquired while running around North London with G Ben just after NY. I ran for about a mile a few days back, then bailed because it hurt a lot. I'm really not up for making it loads worse, so a few lazydays seemed like the most sensible option. All in all, I've run about a mile in 6 days.

But today I'm gonna give it a go again, promise! I've got an old buddy driving up and he's keen for a jog. New shoes time.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Old shoes, new shoes.

These are my trusty old Mizuno running shoes. Though we've had our ups and downs- a few blisters and aching feet here and there- these old workhorses have served me very well over 2 years, 3 half marathons and a fair few miles in between. They've dodged ducks, deer, giant monitor lizards, cyclists and Tai Chi-ers, cows, dogs and cars, in 30 degrees+ heat, in sun, rain and snow on two continents...but now they're entering retirement as I've just picked up a shiny new pair of Nikes : ) .

So I did a quick painting of the old girls as a little thankyou to 'em (and because I wanted a picture to use on Facebook).

When I was shopping for these new badboys, the helpful chap in the running shop said that 'they should feel like slippers'. They do, so hopefully I'm on to a winner.

I really wasn't up for running today (and I think I'm starting to push my luck with the slippery pavements), but I did pop out for a few miles.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Braving the fresh drifts, I did set out this morning. Snowing finely throughout, but I plodded on for 8 or 9 miles. The main annoyance with running in snow, I've decided, is the way that the hollow in the bottom of the trainer's heel swiftly fills with a gigantic wad of compacted snow, protruding out from the sole in 'heaped spoonful' fashion. So it feels like having a big rock glued to the bottom of your trainer, and requires frequent shoe-scraping stops to rectify the matter. Reeeeeally annoying, and can't be good for your feet either.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010


I had a 'rest day'* today, anticipating a big 'un tomorrow morning. Unfortunately someone's ordered in 'Heavy Snow' again for the morning. Still, I will press on. But I'm a little undecided on whether to get out really early and try to beat as much of the apocalyptic blizzard as possible, or to wait til a little later when it's supposed to have cleared up a bit, but there'll be more on the ground. Classic Eskimo conundrum! Perhaps. Any advice from wiser folk?

*this is runner's slang for 'lazy day'

Monday, 11 January 2010

10 miles today, 85 minutes-ish, with a stretch through snowy fields. That was really good: complete silence apart from "scrunch-scrunch-scrunch" footfalls and the odd crow protesting about the cold. Battled through a fine snow/sleet (sneet?) shower on the way back, slipped once but managed to avoid hitting the deck.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Pounding Snow

Okay so when the Great White descended this week, I decided to have a day or two off, you know, wait for it all to melt and leave the pavements fresh and reborn... Well, due to the unexpected icy persistence, by saturday I'd realised I was going to have to set out into the snowy wild. The pavements around here were still a bit dodgy, so I scrambled up to the playing field and ran laps around the perimeter. Rather repetitive to be honest, but I pressed on as the snow began to fall again (listening to a bit of footy commentary on the radio), and returned home after 60-odd minutes and what must've been getting on for 20 laps.

By this morning the thaw was most definitely advancing, so I followed the roads, fitting in a stretch dodging dog-walkers along the partially-frozen canal. Great conditions to be out in really, still valuably peaceful but no longer bitter, moorhens sliding around on the iced-over water, a buzzard taking off overhead. It made me wish I'd gotten out more this week, for sure.

A rather pathetic running portfolio this week, but I'm feeling pretty strong and gliding along nicely when I'm out there. My left knee and left foot have been giving me stick for a fair while, but I'm going to ignore those for the present.

Below are a dodgy pic of me in wintry-run mode, and a snap of the first of the snow coming down on tuesday afternoon.


Hello. This blog will be my record of my training for the Brighton Marathon (& the Brighton Half Marathon) over the next few months. As well as keeping you all informed (assuming anyone actually reads this far) I hope that this will help keep me focused on the task at hand and help to keep me going.

I hope I can keep you interested enough to stick around, as I know I'll need all the support I can get, and hopefully I can persuade you to part with a few pennies for Water Aid in the process.

98 days to go...