Thank you Edward for encouraging me to go out and do a long run. I have been suffering from a touch of Janathon Fatigue in the past few days (or week?), that feeling you have when you have run every day for three weeks and have got stuck in a three-mile rut. I have even been thinking I might not manage to train for the Brighton Marathon, and wondered if I should pull out. Edward knows me very well, and knows what I am capable of, sometimes more than I know or believe myself, and he said I should go out and do my planned twelve-mile run, so I did.
First of all, I did a little loop of the park to get me going and saw about ten runners; it was Lycra central down there! I then continued on to the Waterlink Way, through the Wickes car park (not one of the highlights of the route, in particular the stinky passage way that cuts under the road near Catford Bridge station. Please Lewisham Council, or whoever owns this area, can you sort it out?! It stinks of wee and is always littered with discarded cider bottles). Here I passed a group of around eight runners, all chatting happily to each other and almost ignoring me completely until I gave a cheery: ‘Morning!’. I experienced this lack of friendliness a few times on my run, with a number of people completely ignoring my greeting. Oi, you grumpy lot, I might be running on my own, but we are all in this together!
I continued along the Waterlink Way, this time determined to make it to Beckenham Place Park. It turns out I was very close last time, and would have stumbled across it if I had kept going for about a minute! It seems like a nice park, with good trail paths, which were pretty muddy in places, but it’s a shame that a lot of the space is dominated by a golf course. There is a building called ‘The Mansion House’, which seems to be in poor repair and some lovely buildings next to this, which appeared to have either a walled or rose garden, also with boarded-up or broken windows. I wondered why the fees from the golf can’t pay for the upkeep of these buildings. Amway, it’s not a huge park for running, so I found myself doing loops and eventually coming out of the park at a different point, thinking I could pick up the Waterlink Way again. This is where I got a bit lost. I was following a combination of Green Chain and National Cycle Network signs, and ended up at New Beckenham station, heading along what was signposted as the Green Chain, but didn’t seem to go anywhere. A friendly cyclist suggested I go further up where I found a good path leading to Lower Sydenham station (after a trek through an industrial estate) and the Waterlink Way. Here I saw a flash of Kingfisher blue to cheer me up.
It was actually good that I got lost, as my planned run wouldn’t have been twelve miles. I am finding this new route thing difficult, I can no longer think: ‘If I go along the canal to such a point then turn around, that will be so many miles…’. I will work it out eventually. On my return, I found the boys had not moved from the spot where I left them, having built some incredible Lego vehicles, including a helicopter with cogs to turn the propeller and a fantastic fire engine, complete with hose. We were all hungry by now, so had quail’s eggs for lunch:
This is not something we normally have – they were a gift – so we really enjoyed the loveliness of the shells, with their crisp blue insides.
Janathon day 23:
Time: 2 hours 6 minutes 3 seconds
Distance: 12.03 miles
Average Pace: 10.28
Best Pace: 6.48