It was going so well until winter hit, and then it wasn’t the cold so much as the chain of foggy nights that stopped me. I liked running in the dark, but heading out of the village into a wall of fog, unseeing and unseen, was a little too spooky for even my common sense to counter. Plus, the risk of being hit by a car seemed amplified to an unnecessary level.
Then I was horribly ill over Christmas and then it had been weeks since I’d run and it seemed like it was going to be too much like hard work, and anyway, if I was out running, who would eat all the leftover Christmas cake?
And now here I am, round the corner and facing into spring. In a moment of madness I signed up for the Oxford Town & Gown, which is a 10k in May. I could easily write off the entrance fee, but what the hell, how hard can it be? So I downloaded the 10k runner app, eased myself in at the 3k mark 5 runs ago and should hit 5k on Thursday. I’m not exactly pushing it, so a slow 10k should be comfortable by the time May rolls around. I’m deliberately not finding out what a good 10k time might be, so that I don’t expect to hit it and then disappoint myself.
I’m going to struggle to find a long enough route around here that doesn’t involve either brutal hills or speeding traffic, so a little further along and when the evenings are lighter, I plan to run in Oxford. In one of my previous running phases, I used to like running through the University Parks, out through Mesopotamia, down Marston Road and then London Road to St Clements, over Magdalen Bridge, back up the High Street, through town and back to Summertown along St Giles and Banbury Road. To boost that up to 10k, you could throw in a bit of riverside or canal side running, and that’ll be all my favorite places in Oxford covered.
Surprisingly, to me, I’m quite looking forward to it.