Paul Walters runs the London Marathon

Report from Sunday 7th December 2003

Starting from scratch

I have had a cold since Friday September 26th - ten weeks! This has really disturbed my running, as I have had many weeks of simply not running at all. I did manage to run the Great South Run during September despite my cold in a time of 1 hour 26 minutes (this is a ten mile race). Although I still have a cold, I have run four miles this morning, and I now want to start the build up to next April.

Last summer I was really building up my fitness, and I was hoping that 2004 would be my year. After being ill for so many weeks, it is now quite apparent that I am very unfit, and I don't think that I can expect to be at my peak next April.

I am now starting a regime of running on my own on Sunday and Thursday, and extending my run by one mile each week, building up to probably 16 miles distance if my legs will carry me. I will also be speed training on Tuesday nights. I will make sure that I spend ten or twenty minutes after each running session, stretching my leg muscles to stave off injury, as well as regularly seeing a physiotherapist.

Although I am very unfit, at least I do not seem to be injured at all. I can expect niggles in my legs as I continue to build up my running distance though I'm sure.

I had some good news last week though. On Wednesday I heard that I had obtained a London Marathon 2004 place in the ballot, which means that I do not need a "Gold Bond" charity place. I have been very lucky, as this is the second year in a row I have obtained a ballot place.

I have created a sponsorship page which will allow sponsors to give on-line to my chosen charity, the MS Trust.

Many thanks for reading this. It's an exciting time at the moment - starting to build my fitness and my stamina. I will be running the Tadworth 10 in early December, which is one of my favourite races. I will have to make sure that I start slow and pace myself, and I'm sure I will be a very long way off my best pace. I'll tell you how I get on in my next report.

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