A challenging run and a weekend in Wallingford

As always, I hope that everyone had an amazing weekend. The weather in Wallingford was almost too perfect.

Before I recap the weekend I’ll rewind to last Wednesday. After a rather challenging day in the office, I decided to join up with the local running group after work. I discovered that my options were limited to either a one mile or a five mile run. As I didn’t see any point in paying £1 to run a mile, I decided to join up with the five mile group.

We headed straight out on our run without warming-up – not ideal as my Garmin didn’t record anything for the first five minutes – and headed along a slightly overgrown track. We crossed a main road, ran down a path and ended up running through a random field. As a newcomer to Wallingford; I genuinely had no idea where we were.Wednesday runI checked my Garmin and saw that we were running at 9:xx min/mile pace. So much for a relaxing and enjoyable five mile run after work.

We ran along past Benson Lock and across a rather springy bridge, past some seriously posh houses and cottages and onto a main road. I was still completely lost and was starting to struggle to keep up with the rest of the group.

It was a case of keep up or potentially get lost. I kept up.

After a couple of miles we ran past my office and I finally knew where I was. We reached the end of the road, turned left and started to run away from the centre of Wallingford. Miles three to four are a complete blur. The three ladies I’d been following headed further into the distance and I was left on my own.

The pace increased even more as we ran across Wallingford Bridge and back into the centre of the town. We ran through the town, past the fish and chip shop, through Bull Croft Park and back to where we started.

The rest of the group looked like they’d been out for a Sunday stroll; I could hardly breathe and had to sit down for a couple of minutes. It was more than a little embarrassing. I slept well that night.

On Friday afternoon, I headed to the Boat House straight after work with a colleague. I’m not sure drinking three pints of reasonably strong beer was that sensible, but after tweaking my right knee on Wednesday, I’d already decided not to head to Didcot parkrun.The Boat HouseAlthough not heading home straight after work felt a little strange, I really enjoyed chilling out next to the river. I’m such a lightweight, however, I don’t think I’d ever make drinking after work part of my Friday routine. I enjoy parkrun far too much.

Predictably, my head felt quite fuzzy when I woke up on Saturday morning. I made myself a much needed cup of tea and headed back to bed for a snooze. Unfortunately, one of my housemates seemed to be determined to make as much noise as possible so I decided to get up.

I spent what I suspect will be the only Saturday I spend in Wallingford applying for jobs, lying on my bed relaxing, dozing and reading a book. I only left my room a couple of times and did an awesome impression of a hermit. Not the most productive or sociable of days but after a pretty full on week, I needed to spend some time on my own.

I ate a reasonably healthy meal, checked the weather forecast for the millionth time, laid out my running gear, set my alarm for 06:00 and watched some of the Night of the 10000m PB’s online. Next year I’ll make sure I travel down to London as the atmosphere looked amazing.

BBC weather

I was woken up at 06:30 on Sunday morning by what sounded like a couple of dog walkers having a heated argument about an out of control dog. So much for a lie in. I dragged myself out of bed, had a shower and got changed into some running gear. I then popped downstairs to make myself my usual pre-race cup of tea. Well that was the plan. Unfortunately, when I got in the kitchen I discovered that the kettle was missing. Have I mentioned before just how hard I’m finding it living in shared house.

I packed everything I thought I’d need in my running bag and walked the mile or so to the HQ of the Wallingford Thames Run – a local primary school. As I’m going to review the race in another post I won’t go into detail but it was hot, challenging underfoot, friendly, and slow.

Wallingford 10k

I walked back home, had a much needed second shower of the day and walked the short distance to meet up with another colleague for lunch. It was so nice to spend some time in a ‘normal’ house with luxuries such as a kettle and an incredibly well maintained garden.

The rest of my Sunday was spent napping, writing, catching up on emails, and generally chilling out. Although I don’t think I’ll be spending too many weekends in Wallingford, my first weekend was enjoyable. The only thing missing was a BBQ.

Did you have a good weekend?

Do you find running in the warm weather challenging?


11 thoughts on “A challenging run and a weekend in Wallingford

  1. AnnaTheApple says:

    That’s frustrating about the run. It’s always hard running with other people. It’s why I prefer to run more with people I know so we can have a discussion about pace beforehand. Usually we’ll say “no faster than X pace” and that works nicely.
    And the kettle!! That’s annoying 😦


    • Emma says:

      I decided not to risk running with the running group last night and went to the pub instead. Far less stressful although slightly amusing when I bumped into a couple of other running group dodgers. I think I’ll still to running alone or with Ellen, we agree on a pace before we start and try to stick to it. The kettle still hasn’t been replaced, I’ve no idea how people are making their morning cups of tea and coffee. I have my breakfast in the office now so don’t care.


  2. John says:

    Yes, and yes. It has already been very hot here in Texas, and it makes me not like running at all. Yesterday evening I gave up and took my dog on a long walk instead. I’m ready for October…


    • Emma says:

      I can’t begin to imagine how hard it would be running in Texas in the summer; it’s cooled down a lot here the last couple of days. I was going to head out for a run after work but decided not to because the rain is really heavy at the moment.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Maria @ Maria Runs says:

    No kettle- that’s awful!
    That’s such a shame about the running group. I do feel that if you run with a group, there is an unwritten rule that you wait every now and then for everyone, as otherwise you may as well just go out on your own. I’ve done it before where each time the people at the front reach a junction they double back and join on to the back of the pack- they end up running a little further but it keeps the pack properly together. Although with my club runs we just wait- you know that’s what you are signing up for when you go along.


    • Emma says:

      There’s still no kettle. I’ve no idea how people are making their morning cups of tea and coffee. I eat my breakfast in the office and take advantage of the free hot drink making facilities.
      My old running club used to be very good at making sure no one got left behind. I did question why I’d paid a pound to be left on my own for the majority of the run. I didn’t join the running group last night as I went to someone’s leaving drinks. A far less stressful decision!


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