Chester Half Marathon is on the 18th of May. I signed up for this race back in my enthusiastic days of early January as a bit of a relaxing run and a motivator to keep up my fitness after the Paris Marathon. Which I would have totally nailed, of course had it not been for what we will call an unfortunate injury. But now I’m able to run again and the Chester race bib is probably on its way to me in the post, daring me to take my position in the crowd with the fitter competitors who will leave me for dust in the first ten metres.
If I am going to do this, I need to seriously start training again to even be able to finish it – a run that was a ‘medium run’ for me just a couple of pages ago on the calendar now seems daunting or exciting, depending on my current optimism.
Yes, it’s just over two months since I have put the lycra on and hit the Cheshire roads. Two months of relative inactivity, which, for anyone who has secondary lymphedema knows is a huge backwards step. Blood has not consistently pumped through my thighs at the required rate for a long time and the effects are noticeable. Sure, I’ve not gained any weight and I’ve not bloated up like it can do for some people, but I can tell the difference all the same. Those with this condition know the heaviness of limb, the stiffness and the aches that come with it. I’m barely able to squat and sitting cross legged is something I can only dream of. To you, I look well. And mostly, I am. I’m just lazy about managing this condition, given the excuse not to. Favourable weather conditions and a new bike will see this improve, I’m sure.
So, it’s time to charge the Garmin, activate the Strava and get out there and give this thing a shot. I have five weeks. All advice for someone attempting a half marathon with dormant fitness appreciated – leave your tips in the comments. And your encouragement, I’ll need plenty of that.