Saturday, 15 March 2008

Fat runner

As you know, I'm a deep-rooted optimist, always looking for the silver lining among the rainclouds in which I live. The London marathon comes ever closer, and my training recedes further and further into the past. It would clearly be unwise to run. However, instead of just ducking out, I have found a way of turning this round, by becoming the subject of my own experiment.

I have tended to go into Marathons reasonably well-prepared. I have raised eyebrows at those who think they can show up and make it to the finish line. Those who don't respect the distance. Ingenues, neophytes, amateurs, people who just don't get the life-and-death reality of marathon running. Fat runners. Runners who aren't going to test the mental strength that is, even more than intelligent training, the foundation of a good race, but will, instead, just see what happens.

Now I have decided to be the fat runner. I'm going to run London without training. I may put a few miles on the Garmin in the last week of March and the first week of April. Then I'll have a week or so's taper, and then I'll run and see what happens.

I won't be alone. I will be running with Ned Boulting (one of my hosts last year). Ned's running his first marathon, and he's been injured. Ned is raising - has so far raised three and a half grand - sponsorship for ECHO at Guy's Hospital, London. He's running to thank them for all of the support they have given for his daughter Edie, who has a heart problem. You can find out more and sponsor him here. Sean will also be running, and he too has been injured - the podiatrist says that his legs don't work, or something like that. I'm not sure if we'll be three wise men or three blind mice.

One thing is for sure. I won't have respected the distance. I will see the marathon from the other side, from the perspective of the unprepared fat boy pushing his luck. We will see what happens. Let's look upon it as an existential experiment.

Perhaps it will be fun. Watch this space.

J

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