Sunday I did something I never thought I would ever be able to do...
I'd worked myself up to the point of madness and thought of every excuse why I should not be doing it and dismissed them all.
It was madness. I knew it. My Chimp knew it. People knew it.
I was not ready and had not trained beyond 10k so what the Effy Eff was I thinking.
But the strangest thing happened. I got up, walked to the start line and ran a Half Marathon.
Ran the Swansea Half Marathon.
And it won't be my last either...
Don't get me wrong. I won't be scaring anyone with my blisteringly fast pace - my lack of fitness and constructive training program was very evident, BUT I started, RAN, didn't die and FINISHED it! 2:52:09.
..and I couldnt be happier!
Here is what happened
Swansea Marathon - The Potted Version.
6 hours sleep.
Gallons of beetroot juice.
40 pees at least.
People looking SO much fitter and faster than me.
Casualty Stars - apparently the little blonde doctor, his on show on/off Geordie girlfriend and the Doctor with the lovely long black hair are keen runners. They are all tiny off screen as well!
Panic waiting for friend who is late. Text friend 5 times.
Friend - 8 stone on a fat day. Slim, fit and looks athletic at least.
Friend - Too relaxed and chirpy.
Fellow male runner - throwing up in a bin. Confidence boosting at its best.
Chimp - I'm gonna die at mile 2 ... I know it. Be sick, faint, pass out, throw up.. all of it..and someone will take a bloody picture and send it to the local newspaper. My florid face on the front page..
IBS - fah, lah, lah.. "Can I play"? GOD NO!
Chimp - You'll be on the front page on Wales Online being carted off by a 15 year old St. Johns Ambulance Volunteer mumbling things about not prepared, heat, people who don't train properly...
Chimp & IBS taking bets on when I'll be sick - will it be mile 8 or 13 IN FRONT OF EVERYONE! 3-1 on outside Verdi's.
Fiddle nervously with Garmin x 10.
And.... We are off!
Nerves - if I get to 5k I'll be fine.
Fellow runners nerves - nervous hiccups off Bin Sickie Man.
Running past people yelling my name.
Glasses to hide tears filling up with condensation. Curse at sun glasses for being a waste of time.
Home town! Feeling somewhere between happy and "what the bloody hell are you looking at".
Run past workplace - didn't die.
Past home - didn't die.
Mumbles Rd - didn't die.
Swansea University - didn't die here. (Chimp tears up betting slip and flounces off).
Blackpil Lido - or here..
West Cross - or here even!
Norton - Little walk and chat about how vile energy gels are with fellow plodder...
Mumbles - leafy suburb, quaint but packed fishing village. If you can ever find anywhere to park then do visit.
Joe's Ice Cream - Iconic local business. Best Ice Cream in Wales by the way..
Bloody Garmin - packed up. Doesn't like tree shaded avenues, or cliff faces.
Mild Panic. i Know I have beaten my PB for first 10k but now bloody well can'r see it.
Turn around point - still alive! Feet still working, Legs still working, NOT EVEN TIRED! No sick.
Bloody effy Garmin - switches off, switches on, deletes my previous half.
Water - Bottles, bottles every where but NEVER so welcome in the increasing heat.
Garden Hoses - lovely locals, dowsing us down and telling us how brilliant we are. Feeling the love.
Water - more again. Never been so happy to have a bottle launched at me.
Fainters x 4 - various states of bright red.
Cadets - absolutely amazing.
Running Club types mismanaging heat resulting in another fainter. Best friend pulling her hair back to be sick on shorts.
Another pile of sick. Looks like Muesli? Man with head between his knees being seen to by 15 year old St John's Volunteer..
Crying girl - hot, didn't expect this, had enough..
Tiring at mile 10 - now the calves are crying. I think my Anxiety Chimp has passed out with shock as he is quiet and all is calm.
Walks - now its walk, run, walk. Absolutely feeling it now but dug in and kept going.
Water - Glorious.
Stupid ex "man friend" and sour faced new (old, old) squeeze waving at me. I wave back with middle finger. Running mate lobs bottle of water at them. Calls him a "Bell End". We both laugh.
Finished for at 11 - bottle of water over head to combat heat. My feet hate me.. Sod the finishing time. I just want to get around without walking like a Gibbon over hot coals.
Last mile - went in a flash!
Last 200 metres - miraculous burst of energy that Sir Mo would be proud of.
Home - crossed the line and BOY do I feel fab!
What's this? I can't stop. Seriously I CANNOT STOP. My legs are on fire. My feet are screaming. Decide to walk around finishers village proud as punch with finishes medal worn like an Olympic Gold.
Food - eat the house. Cake, cake, pint of milk and half a pie later.
Massive social media support from friends far and wide - feeling the love again. Sniff, sniff..
Funny Twitter posts - Fantastic "Charlies" - Brilliant tweet that made my day from random on Twitter
"...thanks to all the fundraisers today.. some brilliant charlies supported..."
The poor sod then back peddaling saying it was meant to say CHARITIES and he's not a pervert. Doesn't matter. Everyone taking the piss and talking about the power of good sports bra's and "more than a handful is a waste" comments. From men and women..
Falling asleep to Poldark - didn't care if he stripped off or not. No flying figs to give at this point.
So , I've signed up for next year so I can go through the madness again :)
I've condesed my whole run along the beautiful Swansea Bay because I really couldn't do it justice. It's been voted the best Half Marathon in the UK for a reason. Fast, Flat and glorious. I'm a tiny bit biased as I live and work here but to run it with like minded simpletons on a beautiful summers day is spectacular. A long wide sweeping sandy bay captures your eye as you run along an almost pancake flat course. Some visual markers along the way to coax you along - the beautiful Mumbles Head being the midway mark and the Meridian Tower being the almost home mark. The support from the volunteer race makers is outstanding. The locals are out there handing out bottles and cheering you along.
If I EVER work out how to get my iPad to post pictures on a blog for once, I will share my pics. At the moment I can't - server error.
Keep safe all.
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