My day started like any other saturday - Lazily... I woke up, donned my dressing gown and plodded downstairs to break my fast. With a 16 mile run planned, I knew I was going to need some rocket fuel in the banks so I began with two slices of wholemeal toast topped with organic, crunchy peanut butter; Mmmm... what a way to start the day. Completing my meal with a large cup of tea, I headed off into the kitchen for second breakfast. What?!... Hobbits do it!... and anyway, this is a serious nutrition plan! After trialing many different forms of on the run rations: energy gels (hold on bowels!), jelly babies (any difference??), jelly beans (oops... swallow whole and choke) and Lucozade tablets (hold on again bowels!); I decided that maybe a better course of action would be to focus on filling myself full of carbohydrates before then run, rather than during! So, with this in mind, a nice bowl of golden syrup porridge topped me up nicely.
'Right... ready for a run,' I thought to myself. Except, no. Following the '7 miles that were really 8' debacle on Wednesday, I thought it sensible this time to plot a proper route using the internet; taking into account any untoward hills and avoiding running a marathon before we were ready. So, sitting down at the internet, I began.
An hour later, and my laptop was about to experience what it's like to fly! Paula described it as the over-use of technology, and really that was my problem. I knew I wanted 16 miles; I could make 14, 15, 15.3, 17.8... but I could I get 16? Could I heck! I phoned Paula: A natural problem solver. She solved.
Dressed, drink, drive... Finally, half an hour later than planned, I met with Paula.
Setting off along the road, Jack Frost biting at our fingers, we chatted away about a multitude of matters: what might occur on our run; how the turtle and the fish were getting along; plans for the evening - pizza and a dvd... maybe a glass of wine... Ooooh, and some pik 'n' mix... when... DISASTER!
Paula, had pulled up, just after the 2.5 mile mark, hopping on one leg, the other waving weakly in the air. This is never good; runners need two legs! For a while now, she's been experiencing a clicking sound in her knee when she runs; not giving her any bother, she'd dismissed it - as we all do - as something to worry about later. Now was the later.
We stopped and looked bewiledered for a bit. She stretched. I looked bewildered. She tried trotting a few yards. I looked bewildered. She tried stretching again. I looked bewildered.
"Maybe we should go back?... but can you walk? Could we get you to Natalie's?" Oh... bewilderment!
"I think I'll try again" she offered. "It might be okay now I've rested it." She started off, hopefully, down the road: run... run... run... run... run... run.. "It's working!" She exclaimed "I'm cured!" run... run... hop!
She wasn't cured. It was also clear she couldn't walk. This called for: SUPERMAGGIEE!
"Right." I said authoritively, snapping out of my bewilderment and taking charge. "Take the water bottle, wait here... I'm going to run for the car and rescue you!"
I thrust the bottle into her hands and flew up the road.
'My friend needs me.' I thought to myself as each foot struck the pavement, the sound of rescue in my ears. 'No-one else can help her now.' I told myself. 'It's up to you. Keep going, push on, Protect Paula.' Each strike of my shoe on the street was bringing me one step closer to the car; gaining speed now, faster and faster, I felt in the zone. 'I will rescue my friend, I will!' Reaching the hill, I increased my effort; hauling myself up it. 'Run Maggie, Run!' I told myself. 'Paula needs you. Run!' Reaching the half way point, I switched my mind into racing mode. This was a race: a race against time. Paula was waiting on a wall for my rescue, just under 2 miles away, getting colder and colder! 'Run Maggie, Run.' I pushed myself. Reaching the 5 mile mark, I knew I was nearly there. Just one more last effort to the top of the hill... 'You can do it! I told myself outloud, scaring some old ladies at the bus stop, 'You can do it' I screamed, not caring anymore because I was nearly there; I was rescuing my friend; I was... SUPERMAGGIEE! Arriving at my car, I lept in... no time for stretching! no time for idilling! Paula needed me... and was off.
10 minutes later, I rescued Paula... I'd have been quicker running back!
So I may not have managed 16 miles today; but I've managed something much more noble. And I've realised why we do all that out and back training at club! Tomorrow brings a new day, and another attempt at a long run; assuming no more of my friends need rescuing! Although I'm thinking now of going back to the original mileage on my plan, thus dropping back this week and throwing the cheeky 16 in next week instead. For now, I shall retire for some well earned lunch (only one of those) with a sense of pride, carrying the memories of how, today, I became Maggie the Rescuer... SUPERMAGGIEE!
Distance: 5.35 miles (with a much quicker uphill return!!)
Weather: cloudy, chilly and frosty
Feeling: Super!! :-)
See my run here.