Event Anxiety

Nike graffiti
A bit of inspiration on my running route around Clapham Common

With just over a week until my next half marathon and only a little over a month until Tough Mudder I’m starting to get the usual pre-event anxiety.

While I enter races totally for my own enjoyment and with no real pressure to get times or places, (in contrast to the swimming competitions of my earlier years – which themselves had me fretting), I still find myself getting irrationally nervous in the lead up to an event.

I entered the Ealing Half in an attempt to bypass my usual anxiety. This is a lower profile race than any of the ones I have entered before and for the first time I’m running unsponsored, (as I’m raising money for Help for Heroes for Tough Mudder – please sponsor me!), both factors which I hoped would alleviate my nerves.

However, I am still finding myself with the usual pre-race butterflies, not least as for this half in particular I want to see if I’m back up to fitness post injury and I’m desperate to get a PB for my half marathon time. At the risk of adding more pressure I’m not going to divulge my target time here, however I promise to reveal it if I make it!

With my running team all running fast (Anna and Sandra) and long (Lou and Lucy) I’m getting nervous that I may be the weakest link. I’ve had a couple of good runs this week but also a couple of unsatisfactory ones, where my legs have felt heavy and I’ve felt more like a hippo than my usual gazelle. What terrifies me is that I don’t seem to have any control over whether my body wants to cooperate with my training plan and whether I’m running strong or plodding along.

Nike Free trainers in a box
Nike Free

In any case, I’m persevering and I’ve been upping my speed work and aiming to average a minimum of 4 runs a week, plus cross training, either as swimming, weights or yoga.

Despite all the ups and downs of training I’m pleased to report my new Nike Frees are quite wonderful! They offer the perfect balance of minimalist feel and lightness, but with enough support to make forefoot running on the pavement possible without risk of a repeat injury. They are also incredibly comfortable and offer plenty of space for my wide feet!

They will be getting some further use on Saturday when R and I are hoping to go out on our first run together and his first since his shin splints.

He is a lot faster and fitter than me, even when injured, but we are only planning a quick 5k to test his injury, so fingers crossed I will be able to hold my own. He trains as part of a club so I’m also hoping that he can give me some pointers in terms of my running style.

Nike trainers
Birthday trainers in action

We are following this up with a three hour yoga session with his housemate, which I perhaps rather rashly decided was a really good idea when it came up last Sunday.

While I can downward dog with the best of them, I’m more than a little apprehensive about the prospect of three hours of yoga. However I am also quite excited and am hoping this will be the kick start into yoga I need. I will of course let you know how I get on (if I survive that is!).

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