Monday, 29 March 2010


Hyde Park was the scene of my first 10k run, yesterday. I started running back in January and entered myself into a 10k race to have something to aim towards. The race is now in two weeks and as of yesterday I hadn't completed the distance. I'd get to 6.5k and feel an overwhelming desire to stop and CTFO. So, one psychotic, order-barking friend later, I decided to hit the park to get it sorted. Here is how it went down.

1. Meet POBF outside the Ritz. Wonder how I changed from being the kind of person who spent Sunday afternoon drinking at The Wolseley, just down the road, to somebody about to run pointlessly around the park for an hour. Start running.

2. Have to stop and fuss around with my anorak, bum bag, iPod and keys, all of which are annoying me. Risk feeling the wrath of the POBF, who stayed surprisingly calm. Keep running.

3. Onto Hyde Park. Happily remember times I used to come here and rollerskate. Wish I was on rollerskates. Run.

4. Things start getting tough. There's an uphill bit. Luckily Michael Jackson comes on and saves my life. Decide that Off The Wall is literally the best running music ever. Then Marvin comes on and I think about how much I love Marvin.

5. Nice to get to the Serpentine and run next to the water. Unfortunately my knee starts to really hurt and I start thinking I might have to stop. Which would be fatal.

6. Knee keeps giving way. Am very, very close to telling POBF that I need to stop but decide to keep going.

7. Made it through knee pain! Try to shake out my legs as I run, as they're completely locked into a running shape and I look like the Tin Man. Realise I'm losing the plot a bit. We still have 30 minutes running to do. ARGH. Minnie Riperton comes on the iPod and she gives me wings. A bit.

8. Am in the post 6.5k zone now. Never run this far or long before. The Pixies come on and give me wings.

9. Am basically now in survival mode. Keep asking POBF how far we have to run. Start suspecting that she is lying to me and making me run more than 10k. Descend into paranoid madness. We're running past Speakers' Corner and I wonder why the f*ck people still come to listen to the nutters. At least that takes my mind off the pain. Apparently someone cycles past me on a penny-farthing, but I don't even notice.

10. DONE. POBF insists on running a little bit further but my legs are locked with stiffness and my knees and ankles hurt. So I'm done. It took us 1hr and 10 mins. But I'm already looking forward to the next run. Sometimes I don't even recognise myself anymore. Luckily, I reverted straight back to old Caroline and went out dancing and drinking wine straight afterwards. On a Sunday. Feeling great today.

Anyone else get up to quixotic endeavours at the week? Oh, and any running recommendations to lessen the pain? Which songs give you wings?


  1. I'll take POBF as a compliment (I think). Where is that map from?

  2. Google Maps, I drew on the top. My knee's still hurting.

  3. Yay! Go you! I am full of admiration.

  4. This is very impressive Caroline! I am an absolute non-runner so when I read things like this I am in full awe.

  5. Fantastic - you must be the first female in the entire family to have completed such a pysical feat. Fingers crossed for the race in two weeks.xx

  6. I'm in awe!! Well done! I would probably have given up after the 1st mile - or run into Kensington Palace to look for the 7 princesses; which is what I actually did. The exhibition is highly recommendable & good fun.

  7. I'm very impressed.

    And I had absolutely no doubt who the POBF was from the very first mention. Which, Granine, is a compliment.

    My endeavours this weekend involved Brussels, lots of cake and tea stops, and a great deal of girls' talk.

  8. Good job!! I don't think I'd even attempt that. I tried a 5k and I think that was that.

  9. Good for you! I was going to try to run a 5k but life got too crazy (total excuse) but I think I will get back into training for it now that the weather is getting warmer.

  10. Good for You! I could never do a 10K run. Good luck for the race! Kick ass! x LZ

  11. Most amusing: well done!

    I'm a strictly no-music man when running: it's mind over matter. Matter currently has the upper hand.

  12. For running (back when I wasn't handcrafting a human being), I like The Avett Brothers. One of my favorite songs is "Talk on Indolence." Or "Kickdrum Heart." Or "Figure of Speech." And they are cute Southern gentlemen from North Carolina.

  13. CONGRATS!!! i'm totally in awe of anyone who can run. it seems physically impossible for me! lol

  14. Yippeee, I love running! That's brilliant and a massive step up from your previous longest run, so no wonder you found it grim going.

    As for running recommendations....

    I have a very dodgy knee of my own and heartily recommend a neoprene knee sleeve, you can buy them in most running shops (mine came from the London marathon store on Longacre, a fair while ago now) and it made a HUGE difference to me. Ice your knee when you get home if it's still sore. And honestly, if it's killing you when you're running, I wouldn't run through it. I had to miss my first half marathon because I got some hip pain, tried to run through it, and was still in too much pain a fortnight later to be able to run. Gah, gah, gah.

    I was going to recommend the Avett Brothers too, as mentioned above, funnily enough! Figure of Speech has a good pace. Dance-y music works too, even things like Lady Gaga, David Guetta, Black Eyed Peas (none of which I listen to otherwise) have a good beat and are easy to get into a rhythm to. The Killers and suchlike are nice and kicky... and I have also been known to put on some 80s classics. I always wonder what other people are listening to as they run past with their solemn running expressions on. Heh.

  15. Well done! I have done a couple of casual 5Ks, but even those leave me feeling completely gutted. I don't think I've ever run farther. I'm trying to get into running again now that the weather is (allegedly) going to warm up soon. My plan is to buy new sneakers, read Haruki Murakami's memoir "What I Talk About When I Talk About Running," and put together a new running playlist. My old standbys are "Race for the Prize" by the Flaming Lips, "Sexy Back" by Justin Timberlake, and most anything by LCD Soundsystem. It's a work in progress. Good luck at the race!

  16. Thank you SO MUCH dudes! I've kind of lost perspective of whether it was an achievement or not! I guess personally, it is: my legs are literally about 20 inches long. Hehe. For those who want to run but can't / won't - just do it! It's actually pretty easy when you get going! And a short, sharp shock of an exercise. I definitely feel slimmer.

    Your weekend sounds awesome, Liz!

    I seriously need to check out the Avett Brothers. LCD Soundsystem used to be on my running playlist but strange iTunes bureaucracy means they're not anymore. I need to sort it out.

    And thanks Jane. I'll try to get a couple of those knee sleeves. I'm going for a little run now, I'll keep an eye on the knee sitch. I'm not even THAT bothered about the race now, as I've achieved my 10k goal! But yeah, I could do without a knee injury. It feels OK today.

  17. Haha hilarious!! I just started running two years ago, with my boyfriend as the POBF. Now I run without him, but I've dropped it back to 3km at most, at any one time. Can't even contemplate 10km - well done you!

    Poppy xox

  18. Oh, and in terms of music - Florence and the Machine, all the way. Particularly that song about her brother building coffins. Gold.

  19. I'm going to start running when we get home/get settled into a new flat.

    I reckon its the best way to keep up my new found fitness levels AND it will help me lose a few extra wedding dress pounds.

    Bridal bootcamp here I come...

    Inspiring post Cazza - I shall be in touch for tips...