Tuesday, 17 July 2012

My Half Marathon Hell (It wasn't that bad really!)

Now its lucky I only need my hands to type this, as the rest of my body feels broken after running 21.3kms on Sunday morning! I was surprised at all the different emotions you can go through during something like this, for me it was a fantastic rush afterwards to know I'd done it, as only 12 months ago I struggled to even run 4kms! I used to see these events on the news or see people out jogging early in the morning and think they were all crazy, although I secretly admired them for having the motivation. I never imagined that I'd be part of something like that.

It was a great team atmosphere, people on the sidelines were cheering you on and all the other runners were great, it was something that we all knew we were in together. 
Of course I'd love to say that we were at the front of the pack, did it all in record times and made the papers… but truth is we stuck to mid field, walked a few times (Chris stopped for TWO pees!) we ate some lollies and just enjoyed it. I knew from my training that after about 6 or 7kms your body gets into a bit of a motion and its not so hard anymore but for me the big struggle was at about 15ks, you feel like you have gone so far and still have so long to go! My body started to ache and almost quit on me at about 18kms so we walked for a bit of relief. Chris was a great support, we did the whole run together and he never complained when my little legs were slower than his big ones! I highly recommend doing it with a partner that you trust and who will support you. I think I would have been a lot more disheartened to be running on my own, although I'd have probably had an ipod in to keep me amused (instead I had Chris singing along with the bands a lot of the way) 
They did have live music along the track and some DJs which spurred you on a bit, as well as the crowd and the volunteers being so amazing! They all reached out for high fives, yelled encouragement and clapped along the way. Some of the signs made me giggle, there were ones like 'Run random stranger, Run!', 'Put you're hands up if you're hot!' and 'Stop reading this sign and RUN!' 

My favourite part of the day was obviously crossing the finish line (it was finally over) but particularly because Chris scooped me up in his arms and carried me over the line with a kiss! It was so nice to go have that feeling of doing it together and completing the challenge, I don't think I've ever felt as close to anyone. 
It was just a beautiful feeling of pride in myself and Chris, and also all the other runners who participated and well as enormous relief that it was all over! 
Everyone there was running for different reasons, some competitive, a lot for different charities or personal reasons. I saw one girl with a top on saying 'Doing it for Dad' which made me well up a bit I must admit. Many people were doing it for their own fitness goals or as a bucket list challenge, some really crazy people maybe just LOVE to run! There were people of all ages, nationalities, body types, fitness levels and all different walks of life as well. 

We tracked our progress on a great iphone app called RunTracker, which uses a GPS for your distance, time, map and calories burnt. I've put the screen shot up as proof of our achievement! I used the app for training as well and its a great one for helping with personal bests and for seeing how far you have come since first using it, my first runs were only about 2k and I was so proud of that too! 

It was something I'm so glad I did, as well as raising almost $700 between us for the Lost Dogs Home (Thank you again so so much to everyone who donated) it was also an incredibly personal little journey that I went on and although my body is sore, I will recover and my life feels so much richer for the experience.