The road worrier

It’s less than a week until that Little Run in a Big City, and so it stands to reason that I would have a very unpleasant muscle spasm in my back that rendered me basically immobile for half of Sunday.

Seriously? I know the gods of running and I are not friends, we haven’t been on great terms since the Skukuza 21, but I’ve been doing my exercises, I’ve done the training, I’ve put in the mileage, I even bought myself a brand new pair of shoes, just to be on the safe side. The exact same ones as the current pair. Because they say you should stick with what you know and ignore the pretty turquoise and orange ones you saw on the shelf. But mostly so that my running friends don’t laugh at me for buying another new pair, because this way, they might not notice.

I didn’t think that I was anxious, but I’m guessing my back knows better.

Funnily enough, I’m not really anxious about the race. Well, I wasn’t until now; when my thoughts ping-pong between muscle spasm brought on by stress that will likely be fine in a couple of days given some rest and my best friend Cataflam; and muscle spasm brought on by herniating disc, which could lead to permanent paralysis. Note to self: never check symptoms on WebMD.

(Also, mom, you probably shouldn’t read this. Because you know I’m going to run anyway.)

It is a common failing among runners, apparently, this “strap it, ice it, heat it, drug it, inject it, and if all else fails ignore it, hope it wil go away and run anyway” attitude.

A friend of mine is currently running with an ankle that looks more like a knee. And she’s running the Soweto marathon on Sunday.

So don’t judge me.

In fact, I think I’m being pretty sensible, in that I have actually made an appointment with a physio. It’s common knowledge that no one in their right mind sees a physio the week before a race. Because chances are he or she will tell you not to run. And no one wants to hear that. Especially when the race is on another continent. (Although, I’m not sure I know a single runner who would listen to that advice, even if the race was just Om die Dam…)

Full dress rehearsal, the Cycling Husband and the Walking Wounded
Full dress rehearsal, the Cycling Husband and the Walking Wounded

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. Am I anxious about the race? Well, yes, I am now. I’m worried that I won’t be able to finish, despite having done all the exercises and all the training – and committing to writing an article about it for Runner’s World! (In hindsight, that might not have been my smartest moment!)

I’m worried that something bad will happen to the plane, or on a bridge, or simply in some arbitrary nightclub or bar. So you know, stuff that I have no control over.

I’m worried that we will be gone for almost two weeks. And that’s a long time to be away from your kids. Even though I know that they will be just fine with granny and grandad. Although it’s possible that they might play on the iPad too much 🙂

But mostly I’m worried about my ability to be an adult, if I’m not able to run this marathon, or finish it. Because clearly, maturity is not my strongest point.

Also, I hear you get free drinks if you produce your medal on the day of the marathon. And you know I’m going to need a fee drink (or 12) if I don’t get to the finish line!

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