Parkinson’s law states that

‘work expands to fill the time available’.

With that in mind, when you set yourself a goal it is useful to pick a date that is realistically achievable, but not too comfortable.

This is why when I decided I wanted to run a 10-mile race (never having run longer than 10 kilometres), I gave myself four weeks to train up to that distance (including the Christmas break).

As a result, I ran twice during my short Christmas break (and discovered a beautiful trail around some artificial lakes near Stuart’s parents in Staffordshire).

Unfortunately, I was wearing trainers that were inappropriate for a countryside run, ended up injuring my right foot and could not take part in the Tadworth Ten 2009 10 mile race in early January.

Sounds more like Sod’s law than Parkinson’s law. But my last training run was 10 miles. Success.

Anyway, lessons learnt:

  1. Do not save money on running shoes. I now wear a pair of Asics GT-2140 worth 85 pounds. You do not need to spend as much, I did because my foot demanded it.
  2. If even just one element of your run is new, go easy, be it type of surface, location, gear or climate.
  3. If you leave it alone, it will go away. I went to see a doctor just to make sure it wasn’t anything serious, and a little over two months afterwards my foot was fine again. I had, however, to stop running for the whole period.