During my absence from the blogosphere, we were treated to the natural wonder that was the solar eclipse. My husband was heading off for a job interview and the kids were at school so I decided to experience the eclipse out in the countryside whilst doing something that has come to be an important part of my life - running. I called it (unimaginatively) my solar eclipse run.
It was glorious.
I love being out in the Shropshire countryside and this day could not have been better. I was thinking a lot about my husband's interview and what it would mean to us as a family if he was offered the job. As well as taking my mind off the inevitable pain and monotony of running, it also made me appreciate the countryside all the more. The new job would mean moving away from this place I loved so I was going to enjoy every hedgerow, every field, every cow, every bird... as if it were the last time. Enjoying all these things against the slightly surreal purplish quality of the light as the moon moved across the sun suited my mood perfectly.
There was a noticeable drop in the temperature and a blurring of the shadows but it didn't go as dark as I remembered from the last eclipse I'd witnessed and the birds never stopped singing like they had before. It felt slightly anti-climatic but I kept running and the moon kept moving across the sky away from the sun and life went on.
That was probably the last time I had a really good run.
The interview went well for my husband. He has been offered a job. We are moving. I have been thrust into a whole new world of busy as we try to prepare for this next part of our journey - a journey that began over ten years ago with a reunion of old friends from which love blossomed.
Putting the romantic stuff back in box marked Do Not Open Unless You are in the Mood for Romantic Stuff, my point is That was the last time I had a really good run because there has been so much going on and so much to do.
Normally, taking a break from running would not be a problem but I am signed up to run a 10K race in my home town of Market Drayton on Sunday and I'm not sure I could even run for a bus at the moment.
This will be my third time running the Market Drayton 10K which has grown over the years into an event to be proud of - voted by Runners World magazine as Best UK 10K for three consecutive years and best UK race over any distance in 2014. We were even on the BBC local news yesterday.
I think I can safely say that there is no chance of beating my own personal best for the course. My husband has offered to run it with me and despite the fact that I know it is going to be tough to complete it without having put in the training to get my fitness and stamina where it needs to be, I am thoroughly looking forwards to it. I will run it with my husband at a nice steady (slow!) pace and am determined to enjoy every kilometre as it winds its way around familiar streets. It will be part of the ritual of saying goodbye to the town that has been a good home for me.
Having been up to London recently to support the wonderful Marathon runners, I feel almost embarrassed to say that the 10K will be a test of my fortitude. Watching the amazing individuals at around the 25 mile mark was quite an experience. A wide spectrum of human emotion was on display as people were pushed to the limit of their endurance. I will be running less than a quarter of the distance but still, to keep going will take a lot of physical and mental effort. I will have to draw on all the motivation I felt as a marathon spectator to continue putting one foot in front of the other until the finish line.
I will run it with my husband because with him at my side I can do almost anything. (I knew I wouldn't be able to keep the lid on the Romantic Box!)