Do you remember me telling you about little Alfie running in his first marathon? Well, it wasn’t actually ‘a marathon’ because it was just 5kms (3.1 miles) but when you’re running on seven-year old legs, I’d say it’s a marathon.
The event he ran in is held every 12 months so in just a few weeks the race will be on again. It’s coming back to me like a recurring nightmare, that I do remember saying to Alfie when he finished the race that I would run it with him next time.
‘Next time’ just seemed so far away.
Well fast-forward 11 months and it’s time to register for the big race only Alfie doesn’t want to register for the 5km event, he wants to register for the 10km event. The last time I went jogging was in 1983. I remember it well. It wasn’t 10kms, more like six. While jogging might be like riding a bike in that once you’ve mastered it, you never forget, I’m sure that after a 30-year absence you need to do something prior to a race like actually get out there and go for a run.
With the event rapidly approaching on June 16 I’ve decided it’s probably time to start doing some jogging. I was invited to join a running group (I wasn’t actually, I had to ask them if I could join), and they’ve said I can run with them. They train on Wednesday mornings at 6am and are looking forward to seeing me tomorrow. It will be hard for them to see me though seeing as it will be pitch black at that time of the morning. I’m already feeling sick about it and I’m not looking forward to my alarm going off at 5.30am.
Then when I get there, there’s an hour of running. They reassuringly told me that in the group they have people of all standards. I’m worried I’m going to create a new sub-class.
And back in 1983, we didn’t worry about getting kitted out for a jog. We just threw a t-shirt over the top of whatever bra we happened to be wearing, put on some track pants or shorts with an elastic waist, slipped into probably a pair of tennis shoes and off we went. Didn’t even take a water bottle, a rolled up yoga mat or a takeaway latte. We must have been a hardier generation.
Anyway, I have no running gear. I did have some running gear and it was very new and very smart. It came from Lulu Lemon and I paid a fortune for it thinking wearing all that gear would make up for not having run for 30 years. But can you believe, when we recently moved house, my brand spanking new running gear was stolen. The supportive top I bought still had the swing tickets on it (of course having not been for a run I hadn’t even worn it). Who steals running gear? No one stole my kit back in 1983.
I will find something to wear, set my alarm for 5.30am, get myself to the training session and pending my survival I will report back to you on how I fared. It may not be good news.
Because I’m launching myself into a situation I greatly fear, I thought some comfort cooking would be absolutely essential. Despite Arabella going on and on and on about the evils of sugar, she was actually quite thrilled when I made this.
Rum and Raisin Fudge
Makes: 20 small pieces
Degree of Difficulty: 2/5
Cost: This can be made with ingredients you should have in your fridge and pantry. I even had a small bottle of rum essence on my shelf.
- 675g (1 1/2 lbs) sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 tin sweetened condensed milk
- 125g (4 ozs) butter
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 tbspn golden syrup
- 1 1/2 tspns rum extract
- 3/4 cup raisins
Put sugar and milk into a saucepan, mix, and slowly bring to the boil. Add condensed milk, butter, salt and golden syrup. Boil until it reaches soft boil stage, about 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Cool, then add rum extract and raisins and beat until thick. Pour into a 20cm greased and lined square tin, and place in the fridge for a couple of hours to set. Cut when hardened.