Tomorrow was meant to be my last long run before my first half marathon.
I started running properly after joining my local club in June 2017 and steadily progressed from the couch to 5K then to 10K. I signed up for the half as a nerve-wracking but exciting next step and started my training on 2 January in the cold, blustery rain with my best friend.
If you’d asked me four weeks ago how the training was going, I’d have answered: “Pretty well cheers!”. I felt quietly confident.
From May, I’d upped my distances and my commitment to running going out three to four times a week.
I painfully worked my way from 10K to eight miles, to nine, to 10 and was covering more than 20 miles a week, which is a lot for the girl who couldn’t run to a lamppost a year before.
Sunday mornings were for long runs whatever the weather. I plodded through ankle-splashing puddles and sweltered in unseasonably hot sun with my fellow runners.
My trainers came with me on holiday and on overnight stays for work. I took them out at 6am on Mondays, 8pm on Wednesdays, basically whenever I could between the children and working.
Running has not only made me fitter and healthier, it’s also brought my asthma under the best control I’ve had for years.
It has made me happier too.
It is time for me to think, run it out, push myself and silence the voice that says I can’t, which has often been too loud. To run away the worries that can come with juggling work and a young family trying to be the best I can be at both.
So I didn’t really struggle to put my trainers on for those runs. I’d committed to the half and wanted to train well. All was on track.
And a fortnight ago I ran 11 miles doing Castle 2 Castle for Velindre Cancer Centre with a month to go to the Cardiff Half, an excellent training run for a great cause.
I met one of my all time heroes former Wales and British Lions captain legend Sam Warburton who waved us runners off and kindly obliged in our photographs. It was hard but excellent practice for the half.
But I haven’t run since.
A niggling cold developed into a chest infection earlier this week that’s making my asthma symptoms flare up in a way they haven’t since I joined my running club.
I’ve rested, drunk honey and lemon, inhaled steam and followed all medical advice. I’ve been on antibiotics and steroid tablets to ease my asthma problems since Tuesday and thankfully the cough that took my sleep for days has eased.
But now I’m at a loss.
Will I be able to do the challenge I set myself almost 10 months ago, for a charity I love and did so much for my grandad?
I’ve felt sad about every run I’ve missed and I know I’ll feel sad tomorrow when for the second week I’ll have missed my long run.
My fellow runners training for their first half are doing amazingly – and I’m so proud of them – but I can’t help feeling left behind.
The doctor says wait and see and that it could be possible so for now I’ll continue to rest – and hope.