I went for a run for the first time in about 4 months this morning. My alarm went off at 7, and then again every 10 minutes until 7:40 while I tried to sleep through the inevitable. Unfortunately, I had told everyone I knew the night before that I would be running the following morning, so no matter how long I snoozed, unless I was prepared to embrace the shame of not going, I had to follow through.
I struggled into my ridiculously small and tight lycra ensemble and stumbled out of the front door. It didn’t get any better. My running playlist was too outdated. One song in and I could hardly breathe. My heart literally felt like one of those funky balls of elastic bands that you get in cool stationary shops. I needed to blow my nose. I needed to spit. I spat. It went all over my face. I got to the main road and it was just after 8am on a Monday morning i.e. there were a lot of cars and buses with people in that were looking at me as I jog-walked with a blotchy complexion and excess dribble. (If you read that sentence as it was punctuated, you will see how out of breath I was). I eventually reached the turning into the field, which now appeared to be an amalgamation of mud and small ponds. (I walked that bit). Then I hit another road, which has a very slight (very very slight) incline. I would have kept walking, except that cars kept driving past, and for fear of judgment I managed to drag my feet fast enough so to create the illusion that I might actually be running. Not sure how convincing I was. Ran-walked a bit more, nearly got run over by a small car, got to the home stretch and stumbled down the road. Just about to cross to my house, when all the traffic in the world decided to drive down the road which resulted in me standing opposite my house for too long, being stared at by drivers and passengers alike. Hurrah! I made it across the road, took off my muddy trainers, put the key in the door, and why won’t it open? It’s been double locked. I only have one key. My entire family has gone out.
There is a positive end to my tale. My mother, by chance, happened to drive past at the exact moment that I turned around, and even now I am genuinely shocked at how much energy I mustered as I leapt up and down with arms flailing. She, along with every other driver, saw me, and this time I didn’t even care what the other drivers thought of me (there is the moral, even if it’s not the point). Despite this, I am not sure I will be running again tomorrow.