• Duncan Evans

Bl-jogger’s Block?



Let’s call it a crisis of confidence; a sort of hitting a metaphorical ‘marathon wall’ if you will?  By the way the ‘j’ is pronounced y and in a Swedish accent, bizarrely…

That’s why nothing has been posted for a few weeks.  It is simply unacceptable.  Even if you don’t read this, the blog was my chance to document and diarise what this journey was about and for me it must be written.

The 10 in 10 journey doesn’t start in May 2018, it didn’t even start when I was accepted for the event.  The very first step began on 18th January 2016.  The day when I decided to not drink again, the day I was last dismissed for being a let down to others and myself.  Rock bottom, never, ever, ever again was the promise. This last year or so, it has been me that set myself on this journey, trying to fulfil the potential I had and have before life deems it to be too late.  I’m still sober, its hard but I’m better for it, as are (I think) my three beautiful children.

Back to the point in hand, this little wobble.  Several weeks of regular training and then like some gung-ho teenager decide that I’m going to push myself, too much, too soon.  There are certain things that you have to realise, its great to want change, its good to want to do better and improve but this needs to be tempered with realistic expectations, considered careful improvements, small hard fought gains and steady progress is much better than one major battle won.  Nothing (as far as I’m aware) is suddenly different or better overnight, not even on Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares, failing restaurants don’t suddenly become bastions of enterprise within 48 hours, after the investment, the honesty and the improvements, it still takes time (I think) to turn a failing business around, especially on a consistent level.  Even Mr Ben had a little adventure to learn from after changing from being his bowler hatted, black suited self to become an astronaut, chef or wizard.  I too need to learn and reflect on what was, is and hope to be.

And so, on to the ignition for this storm in my mind’s teacup.  Let’s do a 5k and push, leave nothing back, not steady, just hell for leather as fast and as long as you can.  Most blokes when they decide this finish sooner than they want and expect!  I am no different.  We’d had a torrent of rain and the track at Blaydon was full of puddles, very wet and cold.  I’d stretched and gone through the usual preparation.  Off I go, breezed through the first 400m and I’m happy with my time and how I feel, I can do this, let’s aim for a 21 minute 5k, I’m sure I can do this.  And then at the half way point on the second lap, I splash in a puddle.  The cold water hits my calves and oops, spasm, a bullet to my lower leg, at least that’s what it felt like.  I thought holy carp (remember I can’t swear in my blog, apparently) I’ve strained my calf muscle again, I can’t afford to lose any time.  My head dropped.  I stopped and really started the self flagellation, why did I do that, why did my muscle react like this, why can I not keep training?  And so it continued, a week later I went for another run and this time asthma symptoms.  Carp, carp, carp, that is a lot of fish!

But, realisation, this is normal, this is natural.  This is just simply life.  A time to take stock, so over the weekend, that’s what I’ve done.  I need to sleep better.  To train myself to take time to recover.  To take my time, manage my asthma symptoms, manage how I train, consider my recovery time and ultimately protect myself to ensure I do what I’ve set out to do.  This after all is not a sprint its a marathon.

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