From a novice to a beginner

Since deciding, almost a year ago now, to start running I’ve experienced a myriad of emotions. The euphoria of achieving something you KNOW you couldn’t have achieved before is wonderful. The agony of having your body fall apart as you try to push it to new limits isn’t quite so.

At 45 I decided I was overweight and under fit and I had to do something about it. I found the C25K app for iPhone by Felt-tip in the App Store and thought I’d give it a go. I had no proper kit, something that quickly caused problems, I just went out one evening with my app and started running. At first running for just a minute seemed fine; I had been a runner at school (yes, I know, 30 years ago!) but since then I’d acquired mild asthma. As the programme gradually increased the running time it was manageable; I actually looked forward to running and seeing what this middle aged body could do.

Shin splints quickly became a friend I’ve since struggled to ditch. My shoes at the start had no cushioning at all and old ankle injuries had left me with a weakness that caused me to wobble on each step. I treated myself to some not very expensive Reebok Stability Premiers (£35 at the Reebok Outlet, Gretna) which made a huge difference almost immediately.

I won’t say the C25K programme was easy. As a complete novice it tested me, but I liked having someone else controlling when I ran and when I walked. Left to my own devices I’ve found I’m easily swayed; strap an iPhone to my arm and have a little voice say “RUN” and I do! And I thought I was the dominant one…

Today I’m still struggling with shin splints. They tend to come and go which makes me wonder what causes them. Increasing my speed/distance maybe. I don’t know.

I’m now following a 10k training programme by Blue Fin called Bridge to 10k. It’s designed specifically for folk, like me, that can run 5k and want to increase distance. It’s going OK. Shin splints just now are causing me some grief but I’m hoping that when I put my new trail shoes on and head into the woods with the dogs for a couple of miles the pain just won’t be there.

I’m kinda simple like that.

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