This run was a massive error to begin with. I wake up pumped for a run. I’ve not ran for over two weeks, having been smashing it up in Germany for work and then off down south Wales camping in the Gower. I was super-relaxed, yo. So after ten nights in a tent and few more days of recovery I thought I was all good to get my hoof on. It’s also on my mind that I’m doing a half marathon in November so thought I’d wade straight in a go for big mileage.
Having planned to go first thing, we ended up taking the children cycling to Rhos-on-Sea (priorities) and having a picnic. On the way back Wifey drops me off in Prestatyn about 2pm and I’m ready to run from there to home, about 12 miles all in.
It started off rough to begin with. The first 2 miles were across sand dunes which I’ve never attempted before. It’s a slog trampling through sand and the grass cuts the skin as you stomp up and down uneven ground. I came out at a ropey old holiday park and decided to head to the main road to try and get some solid ground underfoot. But there’s no real path on this busy road, so I’m running on a grass verge and the sun starts beating down. It’s at this point I realise I didn’t think to bring any water with me. That’s not usually a massive problem but it’s not ideal, especially when you consider today’s running fuel has consisted of a spring roll and a Spam sandwich. I didn’t exactly carb load.
A bit further along and I find better ground and try to maintain a steady pace along a cycle path and some concrete pavements but I’ve got to piss, which puts me off getting into a groove. After pissing like a race horse on wet grass I just can’t get into a rhythm. Further still and I’m drained (I’m at about 7 miles at this point) so I decide to head up through Rhewl, sort of a shortcut but a much steeper climb than originally planned. It’s this that kills me. I lose all focus and motivation and the steep climb burns my legs. I went a bit delirious and ended up thinking about eating a scotch egg, for some reason. You know that Russian guy who runs until he cries? I’m like that, but I run until I think of meaty snacks. This is what they call hitting the wall, right?
I’ve never done this before, but at 8 miles I ring Wifey who I know is only driving a few miles away and ask her to come and pick me up. I keep going because there’s no point just sitting around on the floor with my dick in my hands, so I put in another 2-plus miles (the majority of which was walking) and call it a day about a mile and a half away from home.
In the 14 or so months I’ve been running I’ve never felt so defeated. I’m sitting here now with shoulder and neck ache so can only imagine I was running along up that hill like Quasimodo. My upper thighs are burning and I feel like an amateur. I’ve only got myself to blame.
Lessons learned: Spam is tasty but not running fuel. Don’t jump in to a 10 mile run after two whole weeks off. Big runs are for the mornings, not afternoons. Buy a cheap water bottle.