I've had my first London Marathon panic this week. Over the past few weeks I've let the odd training session slip by the wayside, as it's been too cold, too snowy, too tired - whatever, it's not bothered me, because I've got aaaaaages. But now it feels like sh*t just got serious, and panic has set in.
I have a lot of friends doing it this year, and they're all diligently posting on social media how far they've run, what gels and shakes they're using and showing off sparkly new trainers.
There's been a number of things I've had on my 'to do list', and getting better trainers has been one of them.
I went for one of those gait assessments where you pop your foot on a machine to measure your arches and then run on a treadmill whilst a camera takes pictures. During the assessment, I was a little bit suspicious of the whole process, as, whilst the equipment was clearly top notch, the man doing the assessment was clearly blagging it. (I've blagged enough things in my time to know when someone is doing the same to me.)
He then tried to point to non existent problems in the pictures of my ankles, and declared that I needed support trainers and attempted to sell me the most expensive pair in the shop. Needless to say, I didn't buy the trainers. The minute I'm 'hard sold' anything, I run a mile. (Perhaps that's my key to running 26.2? Running from sales people?)
Handily, my Mum is a podiatrist, and telling her of my trainer woes, she properly assessed my gait. Using her degree and everything. She looked at my arches, how my knees were in relation to my ankles and all sorts of things, and diagnosed that one foot is neutral, and the other is slightly over-pronating, but only slightly. A massive difference to the man in The Sweatshop who told me that I had severe over-pronation, and that the only trainers for me were £140. He clearly has a talent for smelling a marathon novice a mile off, who's happy to throw money at the problem. Well that aint me mate! (Okay, well it is, but at least I'm not throwing it at him now. That makes me a winner, no?)
Now, I'm not saying my Mum is the answer, well, I am, kind of, but I am also saying, in store gait assessments are designed to sell you trainers. So take the answers with a pinch of salt.
Now to decide which trainers to buy! If you have any thoughts, let me know.