On Thursday, I was meant to run the route for the Lincoln 10K with my friends Sally and Rachel but, unfortunately, there was a mix up in e-mails and I ended up waiting for them for 30 minutes in a car park before setting out, very halfheartedly, into a cold and dark Lincoln by myself. I had no idea where the route was - was relying on Sally - but I ran into them after about a mile. By this stage I'd gotten so cold that I decided to turn back and head home with them and try again tomorrow. I was a bit dispirited - I'd been counting on that run - but then, clearly, not quite ready to just run the 10K route myself. Let's say the moment had passed.. Anyway - I got home and felt a bit down and was ready to pick a fight. Instead of heading towards the bottle of white wine or a bag of crisps, however, I decided that, as I had so much (negative) energy in me I might as well clean up. The house is a mess - the decorator has suddenly and unexpectedly descended on us and most rooms are dusty and chaotic. As the job has only just started, there is little I will do about the dust (who am I kidding?) but I decided to organise myself and the house. And you know what? I felt a great deal better having cleared the piles of laundry and assorted "stuff" that had accumulated on tables, counter tops, windowsills and shelves.. My head was a bit straighter as well.
Since then, the running has been good. 7M on Friday - at pace! - and 4M on Saturday - at pace again! Not a mean feat if you can see the mud I'm running in at the moment. The weight of my shoes after a run is incredible - there's a whole extra shoe of mud attached! Then yesterday 15M (again, with my seemingly indefatigable friend Sally) which went quite well as well - I was, however, exhausted by the time I was done. Thankfully we had a quiet day at home with the kids - I could have dropped down and fallen asleep at any point but managed to hold off until I crawled into bed at 8:30 for an early night. I even managed 30 mins on the cross trainer this morning before starting the day. One of the things I've been thinking about in my runs over the past days is how I'm running a hilly, off-road marathon in just over 2 months. Off-road is no problem - I live off-road - but hills are trickier. There are slight inclines on my route but there is nothing like the elevation I'm going to encounter during the race. So I've resolved to do some hill training, particularly on my cross trainer as I can push it hard without killing my knees. We shall see. I felt pretty negative about the race earlier this week - I was wondering whether I actually had it in me - but I've pulled myself together now and have resolved to give it my best. I like running races and this one is going to be so different from the earlier ones - so quiet, for one thing - that I just need to experience it. Talking to Adam has helped me sort out my attitude towards the competitive element as well - I'm not going to focus so much on a PB as on having a great race. So watch this space!
In other news, it looks like I'm going back to work! Since giving up full-time work when my daughter was 1 I have done various odd jobs (mostly web-design related) and have tried my hand at various courses and degrees but I think that, until very recently, I wasn't really ready to do any of it very seriously. Now, however, with Felix's operation behind us and the prospect of him going to school in September I'm beginning to look eagerly towards the next phase. And it looks like the universe has delivered some interesting work - perfect for me. A few weeks ago I was saying to my mother that I really would like a freelance career with work that called both upon my technical interest and my editorial interest and hey - boom - I've been given that opportunity! So I'm thrilled with that and will let you know how it progresses. In the meantime, I've been trying to be a bit more organised at home and with the kids, to free up physical and mental time to focus on the future. These are going to be interesting times for us all and I am so excited about it all.