Day 37…?

2 Jul

The big race has been and gone already. Thanks for travelling the distance with me. Here is how it all went down:

  • 7:00pm (day 34): carbo loading…leftovers
  • 9:30pm: should be in bed…not
  • 11:00pm: finally get to bed and set alarm for 5:45am
  • 11:05pm: lie awake thinking about the race. Suddenly realize I haven’t shaved my legs. Reset alarm for 5:30am
  • 5:01-5:27am (day 35) check clock repeatedly while willing my body back to sleep
  • 5:30am: alarm goes off. I spring out of bed ready for action…not
  • 6:30am: should be leaving…not
  • 7:30am: should be at starting line with rest of the stroller group…not (stuck in traffic trying to feed porridge to a screaming baby. At least my husband is driving)

    Our stroller group decided to unite with matching pink shirts instead of strollers just for the day. I was there in spirit only at this point

  • 7:45am: get dropped off and rush straight to the starting line, I’m not even the last one there!
  • 8:00am: race begins, all else fades away

    Not exactly off to a flying start with this crowd

  • 8:05am: feeling surprisingly good
  • 8:07am: not so good anymore
  • 8:22ish am: Pass 4Km marker, STILL 1.7 to go! Notice 40K marker (for marathon runners), reality check, better pick up the pace
  • 8:30:55am: cross finish line but no time to celebrate…where’s the bathroom?

    I look like I’m going for a casual stroll but this was actually my sprint finish!

As I’m sure many of you can relate, ideal race preparation is rarely the reality. I am very proud to say that, despite the less-than-perfect preceding 13 hours, I did it! I was aiming for 33 minutes and I did it in 30:55, two minutes less than my goal time! Maybe it was because I didn’t have time to overthink it. Maybe it was the momentum and excitement of the race. Maybe it was a fluke. Just maybe though, even though the day didn’t exactly go to plan, the 34 days of discipline I had already put in paid their dues and came through for me in the end.

My biggest supporter

People think running is a solitary sport but the team atmosphere at the Gold Coast Marathon was tangible. Groups of people in matching shirts supporting a cause, strangers cheering each other on, fellow racers stopping for a fallen contestant; we’d all been part of something, together.

People think running is a boring sport but the air around the event was literally charged with energy and enthusiasm. During the race I jogged alongside colourful characters like Santa and a smurf and there was live music at numerous stations. We’d all enjoyed something, together.

People think running is purely about beating the clock or scales but what I saw was motivated people from all walks of life proving a point. Mums like me proving they are more than their job description, cancer survivors proving their bodies’ ability to heal, families proving they are doing life together. We’d all achieved something, together.

As I took it all in, I realized that instead of being exhausted, I was energized and instead of being glad it was over, I was hungry for more. So now, instead of resting on my laurels, I’m embracing this healthy way of life and looking for my next challenge. Any ideas?

Back to a new kind of reality

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