A week of no running … we are not amused

More than a week of being sick. Like, yuck sick. Unglamorous sick. Should not be out in public sick. Should carry a warning label sick.

It’s been a week of no training. No runs during the week, no hill training, no mid-week longish run, no 10 km on Saturday, no long slow distance on Sunday. In fact, I stood in the kitchen on Sunday morning, coming to terms with the fact that the weekend was kind of over, I’d not done much with the weekend that I had had, and I was still feeling crap, and realised that I was supposed to be running the Grape Run half marathon. I had felt so sick that it hadn’t even occurred to me to collect my race number, let alone turn up at the start.

I was so looking forward to this one. It was part of my training schedule, along with Chappies Challenge 15 km, Gun Run Half Marathon and Landmarks Half Marathon. It has a tough-looking profile and I was keen to bite down on some steep inclines – especially in preparation for the Winelands Marathon.

The race profiles of the half marathons I was hoping to run over the next few weeks. I've missed the Grape Run, unfortunately. So we take our vitamins and get training again ... (Elevations from www.mapmyrun.com)

The race profiles of the half marathons I was hoping to run over the next few weeks. I’ve missed the Grape Run, unfortunately. So we take our vitamins and get training again … (Elevations from http://www.mapmyrun.com)

And the Winelands Marathon, which is only four weeks away, is looking like a DNS at this stage.

Even the stupid Color Run seemed like way too much running on Sunday. Not that taking part in the Color Run holds any appeal for me anymore. It’s fun, sure. I’ve done it a few times before and I love the colour and the craziness about it. It a wonderful way of getting people outdoors and active and it’s an easy way of spending time with the whole family. There’s just no way you can be miserable with all that brightly coloured powder flying around. But it leaves such a mess and I don’t believe for a moment that the powder has no environmental impact – especially at the coast or anywhere near water. The powder is only coloured cornstarch, so it’s supposed to be biodegradable and non-toxic, but it gets everywhere. Last year, after all the cleaning had been done, the beach was still bright red the day after the run, and the rock pools at low tide were choked with a thin film of dust.

The beach at Moullie Point after last year's Color Run

The beach at Moullie Point after last year’s Color Run

Red cornstarch decorates the rocks along the coast after the Color Run.

Red cornstarch decorates the rocks along the coast after the Color Run.

Red dye, race numbers and litter escape the clean-up after the Color Run.

Red dye, race numbers and litter escape the clean-up after the Color Run.

Sam surveying the Martian wasteland after last year's Color Run

Sam surveying the Martian wasteland after last year’s Color Run

Although, if I’m going to get on my soap box about coloured cornstarch, I may as well get back on it about the plastic water sachets that the South African race organisers insist on using at each race. Again, so close to the coast, they’re an environmental hazard.

But I’m not going to bellow about the environment today. I’m going to wallow in self-pity. I’m going to be glum and feverish and chesty. And I’m going to have more tea.

It’s Monday, start of a new training week, and I’m still fuzzy headed and sporting a champion cough. I’m not likely to be lacing up my shoes today or tomorrow. I’m not even likely to walk through the front door of the gym.

Wow, this wanting to be a runner business can be really, really frustrating sometimes. It’s great when it’s going well. More than great. So great that it just makes everything in your life sparkle. But it’s so totally crap when it’s not going great. Kind of like falling off a motorbike. Just … splat …!

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