Well, it’s done!
After months and months of pounding the pavement for hours on end, getting up in the dark, running in the rain, giving up my creature comforts and lets not even start on the numerous injuries and body breakdowns, but it is finally done and dusted!
Yip, last Saturday I ran 21.1 km’s! This was a huge goal for me and something I never thought I could do. I was told years ago, my knee’s would never hold up and to take up another hobby like walking or knitting!! But I am stubborn and don’t like to be told I can’t do anything so I persevered, stuck to my plan and I did it!
All week I had been so nervous and wondering what on earth I was doing? Could I even do it? I had put in the hard yards but when it comes down to the day, would I make it? Would my nerves get the better of me? Was this an unrealistic goal I had set myself? What was I thinking!
On the day my nerves were actually pretty good, I only went bathroom a couple of times (which is really good for me when I am nervous!) and I felt great. I don’t know if it was the sports beans I had for breakfast, the fact that it was nearly over, or the prayer covering I knew I had over me, but I felt like I could actually do this and my energy levels were amazing! I lined up with around 4000 other people and the gun went off!
There were so many people it took me 3 minutes just to get to the start line, and even then, couldn’t move quicker than a walk without tripping over someone! My 1st km was by far the slowest, but I had been warned of that happening so I wasn’t panicking just yet. Once I was able to break free from the crowds, I just put one foot in front of the other and ran…….
I had set out faster than what I had planned, but thought I would slow it down when I got too tired. But that never happened….. I just kept running at that pace for the whole race. There was a huge bunch of people from Church that had come down to cheer us all on and that honestly made a huge difference. It’s amazing what a friendly face and some encouraging words can do to keep you moving. Phil and the kids were at several spots along the way cheering me on, and I can tell you, there is nothing like the people closest to you believing in you and cheering you on to keep those legs moving! Plus, I never knew when I would see them so didn’t want to walk in case that was the moment they turned up! If they believed I could do it, then maybe I actually could!
So I ran. And I ran. And I ran. For 2 hours, 8 minutes and 28 seconds I ran till I crossed that finish line. And once I crossed that line, you couldn’t wipe the grin off my face. I had done it! I was stoked and still a little surprised! I had set myself 3 goals for the day: To finish, to run the whole thing and to do it under 2:20…….. nailed all 3! Man, what a feeling!
As the day went on, the euphoria started wearing off and the aches and pains started kicking in. After a long soak in the bath, I was ready for bed by 8pm and could hardly walk up the stairs to crawl into bed. Every time I turned in the night I could feel another part of me aching somewhere! Really, the things we put ourselves through!
So, was it worth it? Absolutely! Would I do it again? Not this week! But I never say never! It’s amazing what you can achieve when you break through those mental barriers, when you put in the hard yards and set yourself a goal.
I am living proof that anyone can achieve something they never thought they could. I have a sign hanging in my office that says “Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.” So go on! Get out there! Set yourself a goal and work towards it. It doesn’t have to be running, it can be anything, but in the immortal words of Nike “Just do it!” You may even surprise yourself as much as I did!