Friday 1st January – Thursday 8th January
Distance to date – 21.35 miles
The challenge started on New Years Day and exactly a mile in, I started to wonder what I was doing. Head still stotting from a world sloe gin and cava (classy me like) drinking record before my self-imposed couple of months of abstinence kicked in, I ran past a pub that I go in now and again. As I came up to the pub and saw the warm glow from inside, two lads walked out ahead of me and I was hit with the warmth from the pub, the slight smell of ale drifting out and the unmistakable aroma of the joint that they lit up yards away from me. I’m not a big one for fate, but fuck me if I stand a stiffer test of character for the next 999 miles, I’ll be surprised.
It’s not been the easiest week to start getting out regularly because of the bloody weather though. The 3m on New Years
Day was fine, I then did an 8 and a half mile run on the Saturday morning, two mile of which was running directly into the wind and horizontal rain along the coast from the Nook to Marsden – brutal. I’d gone out for a run in the morning so that I could ‘enjoy’ listening to the Arsenal match later – to be fair, we played alright but we all know where we’re heading. Running back up through Whitburn to Cleadon, I passed a couple of Mackems waiting at the bus stop to go to their home game against Villa – still getting my head around living in a mixed area that is still (although not by anywhere near as much as you’d imagine) predominately red and white.
I finished the first week with a four and a half and a five and a half mile run on the Tuesday and Wednesday nights when it was absolutely hoying down and parts of the North East were underwater – I quite enjoy running in that sort of weather, I always loved playing football in the pissing rain and clarts as it played to my strengths of being a lumbering, dirty centre half.
One week down and the aches and pains aren’t too bad – going to try and squeeze a few more miles in next week in
preparation for a half marathon down in York next Sunday. I’m looking forward to raising a glass or eight in that pub I mentioned to at the start once I’ve done the other 999 miles I had left when I passed it on New Years Day – hopefully I’ll bump into those lads again!
If you would like to sponsor me, visit www.justgiving.com/Haz1000
– it’s all for Mind and I’d be chuffed to bits if any of you shelled out the price of a pint to help me on the way.
GARETH HARRISON – Follow Gareth on @truefaith1892