Testing, testing. Banana. Coffee. I go and get the rolling pin from the kitchen, and set about my quads, trying to get them moving, get the blood in. Ow. Then I go at them with my thumbs and fingers. The lower bit is still tingling a bit from yesterday. Up against the wall straight leg calf stretch, each side. Similar bent leg close in stretch to get the very lower calf. Touch toes for ten seconds, three times – took a couple of goes to get down there. Bent over ‘bounced’ hamstring stretches, feet in three different positions. Face down on my bed lying quad stretch. Urgh. Some weird knee thrusting embarrassment-to-ballet thing Lara showed me. Sit on my swivel chair waving my legs up and down at the knee for a few minutes – according to Howard, this encourages the creation of synovial fluid, the protective yolk in the knee joint. Swallow the usual: two ibuprofen, glucosamine, cod liver oil and a multivitamin, washed down with a mix of Tropicana and water. Pull on my kit. For the first time, I wear the knee supports I bought last week; bright blue neoprene sleeves with a hole for the kneecap.

Literally the first step I take off the ground in Listria Park the lower right calf makes its presence felt. Motherfucker. But it doesn’t last long. And I can run, clunkily at first with the supports, but gradually opening out. It’s a glorious day in Clissold Park, actually a tiny bit too hot for running. I’m soaked. But the knees are ok. There’s a touch of sting on the kneec… sorry, the patellas, but it comes and goes as before. The supports are good. They are basically doing what well-trained, well-conditioned muscles should be doing. Maybe giving you another 15% or something, but that’s all I need. After this marathon is done I have decided I am going to condition the best knees in the world. Like the Terminator. They are never going to worry me again.

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