From Christmastime weariness to marathon readiness

From Christmastime weariness to marathon readiness 1920 1280 Gavin Warren

During Twixmas, my home underwent a transformation into a battleground of board games and toys as my two small children happily explored their new presents. In the midst of all the festive chaos, I found myself pondering life’s pressing mysteries – from the elusive location of where my wife had hidden the nice boxes of chocolates to the long-argued debate on whether grapes paired with cheese constitute a balanced diet. Just when I believed I had it all figured out, a sobering notification popped up on my phone, rudely interrupting my deliberations: “It’s time to start your training – only 16 weeks until the London Marathon.” The realisation of training my body to run 26.2 miles hit me harder than a rogue snowball to the face.

Attempting to reassure myself it would be OK, I recall dancing this marathon training jig before during the COVID era, but those were sun-soaked summers with October marathons. The current scenario? A winter training plan awaits, devoid of picturesque landscapes and gentle breezes.

Gone are the leisurely runs in the sun accompanied by the sweet serenade of chirping birds; now, it’s the wet squelching of cold, muddy trainers and the sideways face-pelting rain that will conspire against my marathon ambitions. Running in the winter is an elaborate dance to avoid puddles resembling mini-Arctic lakes and having to decipher whether that soggy pile of leaves conceals a hidden abyss where the Vicar of Dibley might reside. Summer’s post-run ice-cream deliberations seem like a distant dream.

Anticipating no reason to delay, I reluctantly squeezed into my running gear (that had obviously been through the tumble dryer) and laced up my trainers to brave an early morning winter run on New Year’s Eve. As I set off, I couldn’t help wondering if the indulgent bacon-wrapped feasts of Christmas had truly equipped me for the upcoming challenge. Spoiler alert: They hadn’t. Any leftover pigs in blankets likely found solace in witnessing me huff and puff through the streets of my village.

So, as I embark on this cold, wet winter adventure, wish me luck. And if the notion of sponsoring me crosses your mind, know that your support will mean more than just kindness. It becomes the extra push, the gentle nudge propelling my determination to conquer these wintery miles.