I went to my first GoodGym on Tuesday. People were kind and walked with me. But I felt a bit bad for altering their plans. So I decided I’d find out if I could still run, and if so, for how long.

Wednesday 6th - A 15-minute run to see how long I could run along Hove Prom on my lunch break. It was a challenging weather day - windy!

Saturday 9th - Couch to 5k Week 4 run 2 - Having established I could still run a bit, I thought I’d revisit Couch to 5k as this programme helped me run when I first tried 15 or so years ago. I decided to pick a week that covered about the same number of minutes that I knew I was capable of but was broken into sections. I ran along Hove Prom in the morning while Park Run was finishing. A lovely morning full of sunshine. Lovely to see so many runners around. I found a good stretching programme on Calm - Mindful Cool Down - which felt like it provided a decent level of stretching.

Monday 11th - Couch to 5k Week 5 run 1 - I got on ok on Saturday, so I thought I’d move on to the next week. This was a lunchtime run. The first 5 minutes were tough, but after that it wasn’t too bad. The 3 minute breaks felt like a long time. Love the gentle encouragement of Sarah Millican as I run. I had the wind in my face as I ran back which was a bit of a challenge, but I coped. Did the Mindful Cool Down again once back at home.

Thursday 14th - Couch to 5k Week 5 run 2 - after work this time. I was a bit sluggish to start with but got more lively. It was 8-minute run, 5-minute walk, 8-minute run. The 8 minutes didn’t hurt too much. I stopped off at Taj after my cool-down walk to buy a couple of curries. Then did the Mindful Cool Down again once back at home.

My GoodGym t-shirt arrived today. I hope to wear it on Tuesday for my 2nd session with them.

Saturday 16th - Couch to 5k week 5 run 3. A cup of tea and half a litre of water fuelled me. The idea of a 20-minute run was intimidating. But it was another beautiful morning and, again, I encountered the tail end of ParkRun. Maybe in a few months, I’ll be among them. At least once. I am still finding Sarah Millican to be a gentle motivating voice to run with.

Monday 18th - Bank holiday Monday. I had a long internal dialogue about whether to run today or not.

On the side of No, don’t go: It’s a bank holiday, and I’m supposed to be resting having finished the virtual South West Coast Path on Saturday. And I’m at GoodGym tomorrow and don’t want to overtire myself.

On the side of Yes, do go: It’s a bank holiday, there’s nothing much planned except for a quick visit to a friend and a dog walk, and it’s a beautiful morning.

I went and did Couch to 5k Week 6 Run 1. I had half a litre of water before going, but no food, nor tea today. It felt like quite a tough session, and my back was a bit sore at times. But I ran all the time. I’m not going to break any land speed records anytime soon, but I do feel very satisfied with myself for getting out and overriding that “No! Don’t go” voice.

Tuesday 19th - my second GoodGym group run. And this evening I could run along with the group as it was only half a mile from base to site. I managed to chat as we ran, tho the running uphill thing was tough (others found it so as well). It felt good to be able to run along with everyone else.

Thursday 21st - Couch to 5k week 6 run 2. This was a lunchtime run on a beautiful warm sunny day. The first five minutes were tough but after that not so bad. My calves were a little tight. But no backache today.

Saturday 23rd - Couch to 5k week 6 run 3. It took some doing to go out this morning. Even though I had nice new trainers to try out. But I went and took it slowly and managed a 25-minute run. And I even had enough in the tank to increase my speed a bit for that final minute. My new trainers behaved well. I was a little earlier today and so was running as Park Run started.

Monday 25th - Couch to 5k week 7 run 1. A lovely day to be out. A bit of a breeze but lots of sunshine. I covered more distance than on Saturday’s run even though it was the same amount of time. I felt pretty good although my calves were still tight. My runner’s bum bag has its first outing. Though technically it is a birthday gift and shouldn’t be allowed out before Friday.

Wednesday 27th - Couch to 5k week 7 run 2. A chillier day. I could have easily skipped today’s run. Just wasn’t feeling it. And found it quite a tough session. When I got home and checked my timings that was because I’d been running faster than usual. And I still managed to run all the way with my heart dropping out of peak training zone (according to the vibrations on my wrist) for some of it. So I’m definitely getting stronger and fitter.

Friday 29th - Couch to 5k week 7 run 3 - my 50th birthday. A change of route meant I was much less competitive with my former self. I enjoyed it. A lovely start to the day. And I got to wear some new birthday running gear.