I just want a cup of tea dammit. I'm not averse to fancy tea now and again, but not for breakfast. You can keep your fancy schmancy coloured boxes, and flavours and smells. There are too many variables already in this run, so many things could go wrong...I've already cut my finger this morning without even realising, I don't need any more negativity...now give me a cup of tea.
What are these tea bags in the suspicious unmarked tub?
Rwandan?! I'm not a tea racist. I don't need to know it's ethnic origin...I just need to know if it's normal. (In so much as any of us are normal...I know. But you know what I mean...)
Rwandan it is then. It tastes mostly normal.
I think I might be a bit highly strung.
I did my last run yesterday morning, along a part of the route - out of Musselburgh, towards Prestonpans - and found a little street called Hope Place about mile 9, which, depending on your state of mind, could be a welcome, comforting sign from the world that all will be well, or a snide laugh in your face from the planners as you drag your failing carcass by...
I'm going to go for welcome and comforting. Which is how I took the aggressive toot from a pimped up Polo yesterday, and the big fake sneeze from the white van men I passed...what a super way to show support. I've been completely amazed, surprised and delighted by everyone's interest, generosity and kindness of thought, advice, support and cash over this last couple of months.
I have been stuck in a bit of a rut this last couple of years, and thought having a goal might be a good way to turbo-power my way out of it. And I thought entering a half marathon might not be enough, but if I was to run for charity...that would utilise my innate (?Catholic) guilt for good and ensure I actually did it. There are loads of great charities around, and you can't support them all, so I picked one for a cause important to me (like a sob story on X-factor, there's nothing like a personal cause to help people part with their cash. I'm sure Patrick would have been royally mortified that people were giving so much in his name, but there we are...).
The great thing about supporting a Mental Health charity is that the non-money bit of fund-raising, putting the idea out there and getting people talking is as, if not more, important as the money bit - being part of the change in attitude towards mental health, being part of the conversation, being the person who saw this cause, spoke to their friend and realised they had worries in common, or became a support to someone who thought they were alone.
So I am enormously grateful for all the donation, and actually properly astounded, and I hope that a few people have started a difficult conversation, or looked after themselves or others a bit. Take some time to recharge, do things you enjoy, and be kind to yourself. Maybe avoid the company of highly strung, grumpy runners, for the moment, they might only bring you down...
As far as prep goes I'm off out on a hunt for a pocket, which seems a bit like going to buy a bit of emptiness, but I just need a home for some jelly babies. Either that or they'll be strategically placed with my "crew"...imagining my mother lobbing jelly babies at me from Hope Place is really intensifying the hunt. As I cantered (I may have done a small whinny) past Mussleburgh racecourse I wondered if I should have had someone rub linement into my legs before now, but too late if I should have. I'm startign to worry about changing anything, or going anywhere in case I get too tired. Another pointless trip up the stairs - why did I run? Why can I not just walk like a normal person, or maybe crawl to share the load, I must conserve my energy...as if I'm going to run out of steps mid race (hopefully not).
Among my ongoing worries -
I walked too much at nighttime zoo and my legs are tired (I've never been so acutely aware of my legs before), I also went dressed in running clothes and anorak, and the first person I met was a girl reapplying make-up in the toilets. One of us has missed a memo, I thought. The ticket did say not to come in animal costume...but beyond that appropriate attire was open to interpretation. I think the rhino was my favourite.
I have not tried the pants/leggings combination I've decided on, and I really don't think I can fix that midrace. Mother - meet me at Hope Place with inappropriate pants, 3 jelly babies and an oversized trenchcoat to hide the change.
My feet are tired. I think.
I haven't decided what to eat today yet.
I have to catch a bus at 6am. If it starts with 5 then you should not be awake, in my opinion. a 6am bus is hideous. I'm not even going to be awake until mile 5.
I'll sleep in.
I won't be able to sleep.
I've lost my race number (I've checked a few times a day, it is still there).
I'll fall over. Or I'll make someone else fall over. In my head I imagine us running along to the Benny Hill tune, so many people, we have to run exactly in step, and then I fall over, or elbow someone and cause a pile up.
I'll need the toilet when there is not toilet.
I'll go to the toilet and there'll be no toilet paper. If I bring my own the only place I could keep it is in my sports bra, it'll get sweat soaked and I'll end up with a papier-mache cast of my chest.
I'll get lost finding the start line.
I'll accidentally sprint off and not be able to stop myself. Or I'll forget how to run.
I'll be too cold, or too hot.
My outfit doesn't match. I know this isn't very important...but I'm still a little bit worried about it.
There are probably more, but that's keeping me going for the moment.
It's meant to rain tomorrow. Which I'd rather, if the choice is that or big heat, but I hope it's not just too soggy.