9 weeks to go: Taken over by The Fear

It’s Friday morning and I am walking through The City with a backpack and holdall, battling my way through the dark commuting masses like a salmon swimming upstream.

My shoulder is aching and the toenail on my left big toe is bruised and thinking of falling off.

To make things worse, I didn’t sleep very well and I have a Lily Allen tune rattling around in my head.

“The Fear” was a number one in 2008 but came to me in a dream last night as my subconscious took its chance to prey on the insecurities I had managed to suppress during the week.

Lily Allen The Fear

It is a damn catchy tune and although I have no idea what it is actually about, the title alone is currently winning the battle for my heart and mind.

Last week I completed my first “perfect” training plan week since starting on the long road to London2Brighton – every run and rest day completed without fail.

But after my longish run (29k) on Saturday and a slightly shorter one on Sunday (16k), my left hip felt a little sore and no amount of stretching was getting rid of it.

After giving up and lying down on the sofa, I started and finished reading “Ready to Run” by Dr. Kelly Starrett and TJ Murphy.

The book is a simple, well-written look at preparing your body to run and how to evaluate your body to ensure you stay in peak optimal condition for running.

I’ll review the book properly when I can but it gave me plenty of food for thought on where I actually was compared to where I thought/hoped I was.

Ready to Run

The fact that my body was aching and I could not complete some of the “Standards” he described made me seriously doubt my preparedness.

Luckily Monday was a rest day which I absolutely nailed. Winning.

But then on Tuesday, a combination of my own tardiness and actually having some evening plans that didn’t involve trainers and shorts meant that I missed my 10k target run.

This means that my subsequent runs have been concertinaed up with today’s rest day being replaced by 10k followed by 23k and 16k at the weekend.

So at 2:30am on Friday morning, I awoke with a slight sweat after dreaming about sore joints and failing to even start my big race in May let alone completing it.

Touching every form of oak, teak and mahogany I can find, I haven’t had a serious injury during my training, only the dull ache of constantly tired legs.

This week of catchup running isn’t going to help but I am petrified of falling behind with my training so I can’t win.

Instead I am going to fall back on old wives’ tales like Epsom salt baths and lavender above my bed to ward of the spirit of injury future.

Everything is crossed, even my legs which means that running tomorrow is going to be tough but will look spectacular for anyone that happens to see me!


4 thoughts on “9 weeks to go: Taken over by The Fear

  1. I feel your pain (literally) as I have been in this position myself. There is huge fear of the unknown when embarking on a new, seemingly insurmountable distance for the first time. The training is the hard part. But don’t be too hard on yourself. Not that you should slack off, but i can assure you not all the other participants will be completing the perfect training week every and feel pain-free, injury- fee, etc. It sounds like you’re doing a fab job! I find mental imagery is a very powerful training tool for me. Picture yourself over and over again, crossing that finish line and how awesome you’re going to feel! Savour this whole experience as it’s such an amazing journey that only someone who has done this sort of thing before can comprehend it.


    1. Thank you so much for your positivity! Running distances like this means a lot of alone time which means thinking and overthinking. I like the mental imagery idea. Going to try that one tomorrow!!


  2. Hey there!! So happy to see this! Would you mind sharing what training plan you are using? I just completed my first half marathon and have been wracking up the miles but not really knowing how to smartly “train” for longer distances. Any leads and/or tools that you have found helpful would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! And thanks for opening my world up today to the idea of traveling to run!! Too cool!!


    1. Thanks!! If you are looking for marathons, BUPA and ASICS both do marathon plans which are usually around 16 weeks. You can get shorter plans but you don’t to rush your training! If you plan on going longer, Relentless Forward Progress by Bryon Powell is my go-to book! Best of luck with everything.


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