Paul Walters runs the London Marathon
Report from Sunday 3rd November 2002
I'm still going!
In the last six months, every now and then I have put my right leg into a continuous feeling of pain, which disappears after a few days. Its seems to be related to twisting my leg in some direction, as it usually come on when I play with the children, and not when I'm running. It has been happening less and less, so I hope that although I'm trying to little by little run more and more, my leg is in fact continuing to recover.
In September I managed to run the Great South Run. The whole family (Sarah, Sam and Liz) went down to Portsmouth to support me. The weather was good on the day - fine and warm. I took it easy on the day, and finished strongly in a time of 1 hour 26 minutes. The main point of the day though was that my legs were able to carry me for ten miles.
In October I went up to Newcastle to run the Great North Run. Again, I set off very gently at the back, and ran a steady race of 13.1 miles (a half marathon). I was very pleased to be able to run a strong race, and although I started off at the rear of the field, I was passing people all of the way. I finished in a time of 2 hours 26 minutes, but it took me a long time to pass the start line, and a more accurate time would be approximately 2 hours dead.
Having had the excitement of being able to run a half marathon without pain or injury, I decided to try another 13 miles in a training run with my Reigate Priory AC running partners. We ran on a Sunday morning in the middle of October, and although I felt strong for most of the run, I finished the last mile or so with a very tight feeling in my hip - exactly in the place the injury always gets me. This was disappointing. It is clear that my body has not recovered yet from last year's marathon, and I think that more rest from long distance running is needed.
I have now revised my running plans. I'll run up to 6 miles twice a week until December, and then I'll start increasing the distance slowly. I want to run in the Tadworth 10 - a favourite run of mine in early January which starts and ends on Epsom race course. I'll probably start training in earnest for the marathon come February.
I think that my fitness is improving, although I'm a very long way off my performances of a year ago. I ran in my first cross country event this year yesterday - the "Priory Relays" in Priory Park, Reigate. I was pleased with my performance.
Mentally I have improved, and although things never seem to be completely alright, I hope that I can sustain a relatively healthy mind for a year or so - my problems seem to by cyclic.
I have put a lot of time into selling second hand computer hardware on ebay and giving people my time in fixing IT problems. Through doing this my total collection now totals over £700, although I've got a long way to go to be able to have collected my aim of £2,000 come April.
I still don't feel 100% that I'll be running the marathon in April, but if my body keeps me running, heals itself from it's current state, and allows me the rigours of training next February and March, then I'll be very happy!
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