So. I did it. 21k.
After all the nerves, training and hysteria I ran through that finish line!
I can’t wait to do another one. I think running is a bit crazy like that. As you get better at it you start saying things like ‘Ahhh it’s only 12 k’. At one point you thought that 12 k might kill you.
The actual race was so much fun. I went down on my own because the Doc was away in Vienna doing some Doc like stuff which possibly involved Martinis. When I got there I was texting her asking advice on whether I should have a coffee. Immediate text back… ‘That is a really bad idea’. So I settled for coconut juice.
I was a couple of hours early because y’know.. Parking, toilets,hysteria etc.
There was a great atmosphere as there always is at these events and by that time I was starting to enjoy myself. I’d used up all my hysteria on the way down from the car when I developed sudden chest pain. I had stopped in the street in my unused costume thinking ‘Shit! I’m going to have a heart attack before I even start’! I soon discovered the pain was from probably a bit of anxiety and a poky underwire!
So there was suddenly a period of calm. Out of nowhere.
Then I saw another Midwife runner Katie and we whipped ourselves up into another period of hysterical anxiety!
There was the usual waiting around at the start line. Setting up of Garmins, tunes, poky under wires, messages of support from my running sistas (this was so the best❤️). Then we were off.
I went out too fast. Despite messages from my running sistas saying ‘DO NOT GO OUT TOO FAST’. I did. But I didn’t realise it until about 15 mins in.
I was following the 2.20 pacer. I already knew I wouldn’t be making 2.20 but I’m a tryer. 15 mins in I made a good decision and dropped back.
The first 12 k was a breeze. Then I got a stitch. I was a bit shitted about this but entertained myself through 2k of this by trying to remember some sort of method that involves an in breath with the right foot or something like that. Anyway, it went away.
I didn’t look at my Garmin until I got to 15 k. I’d decided this beforehand. I knew that at the end of the first loop I would be around 10k and I wanted to hold off looking as long as possible because I thought it might mess with my head.
I was happy to see 15k and was feeling pretty good. 16 came and went and I suddenly had the thought that I had never run more than 16. I hit 17 and it started to feel like struggle street.
Along the course there are always water stations and they have a table for electrolyte drinks. I had a gulp at every station but at km 17 gulped down a whole cup of electrolyte drink. Mistake.
Half a km later I could feel and hear it sloshing in my stomach. I considered sticking my fingers down my throat to eject it but my own body worked it out by letting out this massive eruption of a burp!!! The girl on the left of me jumped 2 feet sideways. I just kept running. Mortified.
The last 4 km were the longest I’ve ever run but a great lesson in keeping up the pace regardless. I find it really easy at the end of a long run to drop the pace a lot. I couldn’t in this. I still had some hope at that point that I could make a sub 2.30. Y’know a fleeting hope. But eventually came in at 2.43. At that moment it didn’t matter a bit. 2.43 was bloody awesome for the girl who couldn’t run for 20 seconds 18 months ago.
I had just ran a half marathon non stop. I was so happy. And there was my cheer team, spunky boy Vince and Mimi and Garthie. And champagne!
So. I’m going to do another. And probably a few more. I’m considering Marathon training. I dunno, it might take up too much time. But Halfs are totally doable.
Who am ?! This is from the mouth of the girl who said there was never a need to run more than 10 k.
Sometimes you find your sport. You find the thing you love. I’ve been lucky and I’ve found it. I’m not the fastest and I don’t care. I’m consistant. Day in day out.
Maybe running isn’t for everyone but if you do give it a go I reckon you need to give it a good 3 or 4 months of running consistantly to decide whether it’s your thing or not. At first it’s a bit shitty. Pure effort.
But one day you will be rewarded with the effortless run which will keep you smiling for hours. They are here and there and more frequent the more you run. I think it’s worth going through those initial shitty stages to get to that place ❤️