Every. Single. Time. I. Have. To. Run.
He cries. On Saturday morning, he cried sheets of rain. Last Wednesday, he even attempted to stop me running by throwing lightning bolts on to the ground around us.
And yet I keep running? Am I Forrest Gump? Am I Cliffy? Nope, I'm a chubby slow numpty churning around fields and up hill and down dale like Fat Albert's paler sister. With the bingo wing chaffing from the rainy run to prove it.
My running team? So frickin' encouraging. It's killing me. I'm incredibly unappreciative when they pass me saying things like 'Go Al' or 'Well done'. Profanities fill my mind and I struggled to run for a bit because I'm choking on my own swear words even as a I pretend it's a stitch.
As for Matt - he would have died had I been able to catch him on Saturday when HE RAN BACKWARDS saying encouraging things about how well I was doing and that I might even find it fun one day. He's more mental than mentor. Truly. Running backwards. Up a hill. On a wet day. Talking coherently. Mental.
Coach Christy's mother came along on Saturday morning just for fun and she stayed with me as I huffed and puffed up and down stupid hilly Talavera road, which was incredibly kind of her BUT SHE HAD TO SLOW HER WALK DOWN to keep me company. Not one word of a lie.
At least I ran all but 20-30 metres of that one hour, four minutes and 16 seconds. Quite proud of myself. And of remembering to shove Vicks Vapour Rub up my nose before I headed off - it did help with my breathing.
And now for the good news. I have calculated that I do each kilometre in just on 10 minutes. And we're only week three of training. That means by the middle of May when I'm due to run 23 kilometres, I should be able to guarantee that I finish every kilometre in ten minutes. Maybe even 9.55 minutes.
And you have four hours, or 240 minutes to run the course.
Which means - I HAVE TEN MINUTES UP MY SLEEVE IF I WANT TO HAVE A BREAK ALONG THE WAY!
Quite frankly - I don't understand why these kind of genius calculations aren't in the training program. They're incredibly encouraging.