If you were to ask if I am a runner the answer is a definite no. I was the one puffing at the back of the dreaded cross country course we were forced into as teenagers. My love of running was not helped by the ignominy of having to wear blue gym knickers, in the middle of winter as we traipsed across the Lancaster countryside. Over the years I have occasionally dusted off my running shoes and pounded the tarmac, namely in the pretense of pleasing boyfriend of the time. Never more than 5km though. That was my limit.
I would describe myself as a walker with attitude who likes a challenge. So how did I find myself completing a half marathon last week and loving it? It wasn’t just any old run, it was The two oceans marathon, billed as the world’s most beautiful marathon and in a place that was on my short list of holiday destinations. So when my friends dropped out and offered us their places I didn’t hesitate too long before signing up.
Here’s my quick list of what I did and what I didn’t do…..
- Got together a training plan. I hadn’t run much more than 5km so working up to 21km was a bit of a challenge especially as I had 7 weeks. This plan worked for me.
- Got myself a running buddy. Mainly my husband who gallantly ran at my pace even on race day. Other friends also supported along the way with my training runs.
- Did other cross training stuff like yoga and swimming.
- Put my runs into an online programme
What I didn’t do
- Change my diet. Carb load or low carb diet whatever is the trend now.
- Get a fancy watch to track my running pace
- Obsess over the schedule. Sometimes I skipped sessions
- Take any diet supplements.
I don’t have any ground breaking tips but it’s true that on the day the atmosphere just spurs you on. The kilometers just sped by as I jogged along in a sea of humanity. I did my fair share of people watching, amazed at all the shapes and sizes and ages taking part. What got me up one of the massive hills was focusing on a rather large, pink Lycra wrapped bottom. Whatever it takes.
So watch out all you non runners out there, you might find yourself signed up to run a marathon!