Having tired myself in the effort to find a reason not to do so, I eventually went for a run. I had procrastinated for an hour and dawdled through sixty minutes more, but somewhat against my fondest hopes, everything eventually fell into place and I made it through the door – only to return immediately in order to don cap, sunglasses and Factor 30, owing to the fact that the sun had crept higher into the sky during my protracted preparations raising the temperature from balmy to totally unsuitable for an ageing carrot-top to run in, however, my will had now been sapped to such an extent that I could not bear to back out completely. If it meant that I did not have to relive the previous two hours of angst, then sunstroke was an acceptable price to pay.
I am not certain where time goes when I am getting ready to run: one minute I am trying to decide what shirt I need to wear, the next minute, it is an hour later and I’m wandering around the house in my pants, trying to remember where I left my shorts. By the time I have got myself together, my running shoes are often in another time zone. A half hour run requires a preparation time of at least an hour. If I ever run a marathon I will have to book a week off work. Although if I ever was to run a marathon, the hours before the run would have little to compare with those that follow which, I fear, would seem very much longer to those that had to live with me. Not that there is much chance of that – marathon-wise I already have all of my excuse-ducks in a row:
- Although history has shown that I am technically not too old to run a marathon, common sense decrees that I am far too old to run a first marathon.
- My attention span is (at best) about ninety minutes. As a marathon would take me somewhere around the seven hour mark, there is every chance that I would forget what I was doing and stop for a pie and a pint along the way.
- Given my aptitude for falling over, I would almost certainly over the twenty six miles distance find more than ample opportunity to come a proper cropper – and tarmac roads are very hard.
- I live in morbid fear of the kind of shame that would accompany a three kilometre capitulation.
- If I should, by some miracle, make it beyond the half way mark, it would be in a time that would ensure that all the paramedics had given up and gone home before I needed them.
So, my current timetable is unlikely to vary: 30 minutes or so to run the 5km that constitutes my regular hobble, Lord alone knows how long getting ready for it, twenty minutes to shower afterwards and ten minutes for a recuperative ice cream before I am sufficiently revived to turn the coffee machine on.
Time well spent is never wasted.