It’s always a challenge to write about my in-run thoughts when I return, let alone a week afterwards. It’s a little like trying to recall the salient details of a vivid dream as input from the senses rushes in to fill the newly awakened conscious mind and crowds them out.
Had I written this post last week it may well have been a lengthy and candid expose to the way I was feeling that day, hence the fears in the title.
I shall instead focus on the mud and sweat, but the fears are a side-effect of the material I have been reading and developing for my workshops on self-awareness, team performance and creativity. Honestly embracing our fears and failings, alongside of a demonstrable understanding of our skills, experience, motivations and goals, is a solid foundation onto which we can each build a truly fulfilling life.
This is not to say that I was in a morbid mood… I was not. It was a totally glorious day and I was on top form, both mentally and physically… hence my thoughts flowing freely.
I decided to run towards the Beacon but be satisfied if I turned around at Ditchling. The sun was so bright through the trees on Keymer Road that I was super-careful with any passing cars lest they did not see me through the glare.
There was sufficient surface mud on the path to Oldlands Mill to use ‘straight through’ tactics, but it wasn’t deep enough to drench my feet or throw more than a thin layer of splatters onto my back.
Lots of people were out and clearly also happy, as more people returned my cheery greetings than normal.
I soon found myself running up the steep Beacon track and arrived at the top in 56 minutes.
I shared the top and a little conversation with a lovely couple from Clapham who had walked from Jack & Jill and intended to return via Wolstonbury… a more involved walk than most of the numerous people thereabouts.
I then retraced my steps down the Beacon track, through Ditchling, up onto Lodge Hill (intensely hard work for a couple of minutes), back past Oldlands and on home.
Longs and three layers proved on the warm side, but not monumentally so, though my hat and gloves got stowed before climbing the Beacon… it must have been at least slightly chilly.
I’m pretty sure that the time was 1.45 when I returned… slightly slower over the 10 mile route than on the 2nd September due largely to the conversational pause at the mid-point.
Overall a great run and good thinking time!