Day 31 of The MAD Challenge and this is it. Yes it is the finale, the final day. This is how I will complete the MAD Challenge.
Before I began taking on this venture to raise money for cancer research I had an idea of finishing in style. The idea being to run across the Humber Bridge. A local landmark which is known around the country and even the world. What a great way to complete a month’s endeavour.
I also had a vision of it being a bright and sunny day. Yet it was not to be.
This is the August Bank Holiday and in typical UK fashion it was raining, chucking it down.
My alarm was set early to capture an early morning run. Yet once I awoke I saw the heavy rain outside and opted for the snooze button.
I tried to plan my run for dry, or at least non-rain conditions. Yet I checked the weather forecast online and it didn’t look good. Rain was forecast for the full day and the next few days.
I recalled how Day 1 was a rainy day too so I thought that I’d start as I mean to finish. I’d just have to go and complete my final mile a day since there was to be no let up in the rain.
The MAD Challenge weigh in
Prior to leaving though I completed my weigh in.
Unsurprisingly the results were not great.
Since gaining my hip injury 2 weeks ago, the idea of losing weight was always going to be a very challenging one. The only way to do it would be to change my diet. However that would have blurred the results of seeing what happens when I go a mile a day for a month.
Maybe if running becomes a routine for me I can assess the results over a longer timescale.
The finale to The MAD Challenge
So here I was at the Humber Bridge car park. Ready to embark on a final mile for charity.
I always thought that I wanted to go out in style yet my injuries a couple of weeks ago cast a lot of doubt over that. To be honest 3-4 days ago the thought of being able to run by 31st August seemed highly optimistic.
I still had my niggling doubts but the recovery had been notable in recent days. Maybe I could just try running a mile?
For the first time in over a month I can rest tomorrow. So if I aggravated the injury then I could rest it properly.
Little did I expect what then happened!
Results for Day 31 of The MAD Challenge
In very wet conditions I had my running gear on and was ready to go.
It took a while for my running watch to find the GPS signal. However with such overcast conditions it wasn’t surprising. Had it been a sunny day then it would find them in seconds.
I noticed other runners around which immediately made me feel a little pressure on myself that I had to show the level of commitment that they had.
My watch was ready, I was ready. Off I went.
Remembering what I learnt at the end of week 1, I soon found a pace which was comfortable for me. Not too fast and not too slow. Just to keep moving.
Surprisingly I hardly noticed any discomfort from my hip. This was very encouraging.
I’d glance occasionally at my watch to check for pace and distance covered. Pretty soon I was up and past the 0.4 of a mile mark.
Without running for 2 weeks I had serious doubts about my level of fitness. How far could I really go?
Previously I’d never run straight for a mile. There was no reason to think I could do it today. I’m 2 weeks less fit than when I last ran.
Yet I saw the distance clock up and up. I got to 0.5 mile, 0.6 mile…
I wanted to finish strongly but this was encouraging.
I kept telling myself that I can do this. Just push on, keep going.
By the time I was three quarters of the way there I just knew I could push myself to the end. Why not. I didn’t have to run tomorrow.
Let’s finish this in style.
So I did.
Wow, what an achievement.
I could barely take it in. For the first time on The MAD Challenge I had been able to run a whole mile straight. Not a single walking break.
Then it got better.
I’d also run a new personal best! How on earth did I achieve a new record when I’d been injured for the last 2 weeks?
I’d knocked 22.3 seconds off my best time. Phenomenal result and what a finale to The MAD Challenge.
I can barely take it in.
You can see the video of my run here:-
What happens now The MAD Challenge has finished?
Well that is an interesting question.
I never really thought that I would but I’ve quite enjoyed the experience of running. So much so that I missed it over the last 2 weeks.
Getting an injury was a real frustration and hampered some of the things I could have achieved.
For instance, Mark challenged me to get under a 9 minute mile. Well the injury scuppered that idea.
Elaine said that she would sponsor me more if I completed a 5k run by the end of September. Well I’ve lost 2 of my key training weeks to injury so I can’t see how I could come close to that even before the end of October.
Also, now that I have officially finished I didn’t reach my sponsorship target of £500. I think overall that is my biggest disappointment.
However, as they say, sponsorship opportunities are still available. So for all those people who said they would sponsor me but have yet to do so. The just giving page will remain open.
I’d like to think that I will keep running. Certainly not at a rate of every single day. That just increases the risk of injury and my body will need rest days.
Who knows? I might even continue to write about my running experiences on here.
For now though I’d like to thank everybody who has supported and encouraged me. The MAD Challenge was a fun, and painful thing to do. Hopefully it will lead me to developing a good running regime.
More importantly though, if the money I’ve raised through The MAD Challenge can make a difference with cancer research then it has all been worthwhile.
Thanks for reading and your support.