Greetings old friends and new!

I ran a marathon last month. I’d always wanted to do one and after some pretty intensive training over a period of months I achieved my goal. New readers can find the blog which painfully covered this period here
As the marathon approached I found two strong pulls in my life. Half of me couldn’t wait for the actual day. But half of me didn’t want it to come because of the anti-climax I would feel after the initial exhilaration of achieving it passed. And boy has the post-marathon depression been strong. There is still the sense of achievement but I need something to keep me going. The options after a marathon commonly appear to be a) another marathon; b) a triathlon or c) an ultra marathon. None of these are possibilities for me so in the meantime I’ve entered a squash ladder. Oops – I’ve only played one game of squash around 35 years ago! Hopefully I’ll find some other manageable targets to work at and write about so please do join me on the next stage of my journey. And if you have any ideas of targets for me, please drop me a comment. Thank you!

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8 thoughts on “Greetings old friends and new!

  1. I was wondering what you might do after the marathon! I think the ‘high’ that you get after such an achievement is the key to what drives many athletes to keep going. Don’t lose sight of what a massive achievement it was! Glad to see you’ve started another blog. I’m pretty sure you’ll find something to inspire and challenge you before long! I have no idea what a squash ladder is – is it something like a golf handicap?

    • Thanks Jo. A squash ladder is a wee bit like a golf handicap. A ladder of names is issued and you have a month to challenge the person above you to a game. If you win you swap places with the person above who you have beaten. If you keep losing you end up at the bottom. It means that after a while you’re playing those of a similar standard. We’ll see how it goes!

  2. I was telling my mum about your challenges the other day when we were in Fort William because Ben Nevis reminded me of you climbing all the Munros. I said to her that I wondered what you’d do next, after running a marathon, and now I see you’ve found something. I’ve never played squash in my life, it looks quite terrifying to me, but I wish you well with your ladder climbing. You don’t fancy trying your hand at writing a book by any chance? I think you’d do a great job, particularly if you drew on your peculiar dreams. Humour writing is notoriously difficult but you have a gift for it.

    • Thanks Lorna. It’s a great weakness to need to have a challenge in your life. As soon as you meet one you’re looking for the next one. So I’m not proud of it but I guess it’s part of me that I need to live with. I can honestly say that I have no intention whatsoever of writing a book. But I have great admiration for those who do!

  3. I know what you mean!
    I did two marathons in 2011, and after the second one, hit the doldrums. I couldn’t motivate myself to run, and I was too exhausted to contemplate another marathon for early 2012, and an ultra or double marathon wasn’t really on the cards.
    Then a friend of mine suggested a 100km walk and (in the voice of Barney Stinson) “Challenge accepted!”.
    So that pretty much blew away 2012 and, guess what, I was left with an even greater ‘challenge deficit’ after that event (20hrs 42mins non-stop), which only just cleared this year.
    I’m interested to follow how you progress in your ‘life after a marathon’ and what tactics you use.
    Keep up the good work!

    • Thanks very much! I must confess that the thought of a 100km continuous walk has never crossed my mind. Many congratulations, not only on completing it but within what seems to me to be a really good time. I enjoy walking but I wouldn’t think of a distance like that. At present I’m doing a weekly 5k and still reaping a bit of the benefits of the marathon training. I’ll keep you posted!

  4. Thanks David. It was a good challenge – though at 3am it all goes a bit delusional and you really start to wonder why the hell we do these things to ourselves! I’m still not sure of the answer to the question, I just know that there is something that keeps driving us on!
    All the best, and I hope you keep up the running.
    And good luck with the squash!

    • Maybe folk who run have the type of personality that drives them on to more and more punishing exercise. I know I need targets or things I can tick off a list. I’m not very good at lying on a sunny beach doing nothing. I’m not sure about the squash but thanks anyway for the good wishes!

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