Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise - running is horrible.
I know this from experience as I have recently taken it up despite being old enough to know better.
Don’t get me wrong, running is brilliant exercise, you can enjoy fresh air while challenging the lungs and slim-lining the thighs and when you get back you feel super-smug.
Unless you fall headfirst in a bush after tripping over a twig in an unexpected downpour.
But that’s another story.
You also get to wear a fine array of activewear and wear a little bum bag with your phone in so you can competitively track and time your adventures while looking super-cool.
You get to know the local area, become on sniffing terms with all the local dogs and learn which neighbours are worth crossing the road to avoid.
But the thing is, running is addictive even to those who would rather weld their bums to the sofa and sit covered in crisp crumbs watching box-sets with a glass of white.
I know because I just described myself.
This is no evangelical ode to running I assure you but I am getting something out of it, even though I could not force myself out of bed this very morning.
In order to keep it my friend and I have pledged to try and do as many free 5k Parkruns as possible in Lancashire.
We unwisely started with the Cuerden Valley Parkrun which nearly killed us as it is also one of the hilliest.
This meant we also had to walk up steep slopes panting while being overtaken by three-year-olds and dads with buggys.
Then last week we tried Lytham Hall Parkrun , famed for its flatness (thank goodness), which we did actually manage to run without stopping, despite the fact I manage to get my bum stung by stinging nettles as soon as I climbed out of the car on arrival.
That activewear is thin I’m telling you.
I enjoy telling you about these runs now but I’m not going to lie, it’s tough.
Of course the real battle is not the running, it’s the pyschological battle in your head.
What’s addictive is actually defeating those negative thoughts telling you to stop, to slow, to give up.
Conquering horrible, it turns out, is actually fantastic.