File 10-11-2015, 16 50 52 cap

Admittedly I only made it clear I was running the 2016 London Marathon a week or so ago – but for once, I’d actually already started training. What’s more, it was going really well. It was…

Maybe too well. After a fairly mile-heavy week, the pain on the inside of my left shin was becoming hard to ignore. At one point, it felt like my left leg was going to collapse each time it hit the road – not an ideal situation when you’ve got a training programme to get through, never mind actual races.

There are only two in my calendar.

The first is the City of Norwich Half Marathon on Sunday, November 22 – or the day after Stamford Bridge, so says my diary.

No prizes for guessing the other – the 2016 London Marathon which, as far as my brain goes, is still only noted as “probably around April at some point”.

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Some of you may know Neil Featherby – famous Norwich runner-turned-runners’ guru, working out of his Sport Link shop, north west of the city. The chats I’ve had with him over what to do next have been plentiful and the verdict was pretty straight forward: Rest. If it was shin splints, it’d be for a couple of weeks. If it was a stress fracture, more like seven to eight.

That was three weeks ago. I’ve since felt good and last week, hit the road again. It felt weird. Sometimes it felt sore. And all the time I know if I push too hard, it’s going to come back – whatever it is/was.

So in truth with three runs planned for the coming week, I still might not make the Norwich Half. I have no idea how my shin will deal with what its got coming – and the fact is, what I’ve got lined up at some point in April is much more important.

Certainly with all the interruption to my programme, it doesn’t look like I’ll be getting the personal best (for those interested, 1hr 53m 12s) I was hoping for. Still, this is about a marathon and therefore, by its very nature, the long game. In the words of one footballer known for slipping as much as sliding, I go again at Norwich.

Fingers crossed.

Please sponsor my London Marathon effort, in aid of Alzheimer’s Research, here: Thank you!