Just over three weeks ago I ran my first (more than a) marathon, Lorne to Apollo Bay along the amazing Great Ocean Road. The reason I know that is because my hair free race legs are due a wax so it must be around that time frame. Seems like ages ago, and unless you look at the skank that are my butchered and post-blistered feet, its hard to know it happened.
After writing my last post I was wondering if I was going to be proved wrong and I would experience some life changing experience over those 44.5km, yeah nah. Didn’t happen.
I can tell you what did happen though ……
After admiring the slightest of moons in a clear, pre-dawn sky, I watched the sun rise majestically over the ocean. As the bus taking us to the start line, wound around hair pin turns that we knew we would be running soon, I took in crashing waves down below the cliffs to my right and hurling travelsick competitors to my left.
I took the biggest cocktail of tablets hoping my gut and arse would behave and be pain free over the next few hours – which it did, yay! I felt I deserved a medal for that.
RunningBuddy Lee kept me occupied and entertained with various split, pace and distance equations, we kept to our original plan that we had trained with and it worked a charm.
There was various high fiving and talk of spanking bastard hills once Mount Defiance and other peaks were behind us.
We chatted to other competitors along the way, learnt a few stories as we followed the white lines of the road, offering encouragement and being encouraged, the #backOfThePackSuperstars knowing it was a different race for us than it was for those up front.
There were treasured texts and pics from my family offering support and faith.
For a while I had the joy of running on a growing blister pillow on the bottom of both feet, feeling it squish and roll like a half-filled waterbed with every step.
Then the blister popped.
There was no wall. No time when I thought I couldn’t go on. Lee and I stayed side by side the whole way, we chatted, we pondered, we were silent, we had a laugh and we stayed true to doing this together for fun. Towards the end would we were tired but definitely not defeated.
Seeing our family and friends there at the finish line was brilliant – crossing the line, arms held high, the thought still fills me with pride and gratitude. To share the run with Lee was beyond fabulous.
The run was pretty pain free, smart training and smarter running meant that hips and knees and all the rest felt pretty good. We weren’t running just for this race, we were running so we could keep running, the following week, month, year….. whatever, I was upright at the end and that was brilliant. And even better, I could still do stairs afterwards!
Walking back to where we were staying then driving back to Melbourne that night was pretty tough, but as I looked down and saw my Garmin at 52km for the day…… an Ultra started to cross my mind.........maybe next year.
A huge thank you to all the team and ambassadors at SheScience for supporting me (physically and mentally) on my way to the mara - thanks all x