It's been another busy two weeks with my highest mileage fortnight so far and I am happy to report I survived!
Just over a week ago I set off on a solo 18 miler as my running buddy was injured. I was seriously self doubting (what's new) but not only did I do it I enjoyed it. After half a marathon I arrived at Gunnersbury for parkrun to attempt my first block of marathon pace miles mid long run. As I was running up and back to keep warm before it started my lovely friend Allie ran towards me, I thought it was just to say hi but nope she was there to run with me, keep me at my pace and support me all the way round....I was so grateful. As we set off along came Mirka who joined in pacing me around....felt like I had two sentinels! Two wonderful, super supportive sentinels who got me round feeling strong. And to my delight the last mile and a bit also went well and I finished for the first time feeling strong and absolutely buzzing.
As per, I found the mara pace run in the week difficult, but I got that and the other sessions done.
So this weekend was a biggie for me...my first organised 20 miler. Needless to say I was petrified. What if I can't? What if I have to give up? What if it hurts? What am I doing? What if it's too fast and I blow up? The norm basically. I even got both shaky and teary before the start as I just get so overwhelmed by it all.
However I kind of know myself now when it starts I am usually all right ( though I was starting at mara pace for the first time to do between ten to thirteen miles before dropping back to training pace.)
I drove and picked up a few Eagles on the way and was pleased to see Christine was running the same pace as I was for the first part as was my friend Justina. I find distraction always helps! At mile 13 I reluctantly watched Christine go on knowing I needed to try to stick to my plan but finding it hard to slow down. I was solo by then. By 15 I was thinking this was hard work. It was hot and I possibly was a little dehydrated. I talked myself into getting to 16 to see how I was feeling. Felt a bit better but by 17 I had that sneaky voice in my head...you've done so well, why not walk a little bit? It wouldn't matter. You aren't feeling a hundred percent now, you don't want to get ill.
Just as I thought that voice was going to win I saw Isobel in front of me....literally a shining Angel, we ran together for the last bit and it helped so much. It meant I went slightly quicker than I should have but she got me to the end.
I seem to have a common theme in my blogs but once again all hail the running buddy!
As an aside bit nervous about what the next race will bring to my poor car. Brighton was my first organised race and I got a flat battery. Yesterday on the way home someone scraped the side of the car by completely misjudging and actually driving on the wrong side of the road! That caused a bit of a delay to all of us getting home. We were literally waiting for insurance details etc and stretching as we did. The girl who had gone into my car must have thought we were a lycra loving, trainer wearing very strange posse!
Dorney Lake for me next week, hoping it is not too windy.
Not long now!
The photo below unfortunately doesn't feature everyone who was running but I love it, thank you Che!