Half Marathon ….. Done!
Yay I did it! A very pedestrian time of just under 2Hrs 20min saw me collapsing over the finish line with knees and legs hurting like I’ve never experienced before but with an immense feeling of pride in achieving a goal that at the beginning of the year seemed an almost impossible task.
The route was a lot hillier than I expected as we wound our way out of Coventry city centre and out through the lovely countryside around Keresley and Radford but it was a huge boost to get the support of many many folks lining the pavement cheering, clapping and shouting words of encouragement. It seems the Olympic spirit is still hanging on after our incredible Summer of Sport.
Not that I felt in anyway Olympian, particularly as we hit the 8 mile mark and my right knee started wondering why I hadn’t stopped. 8 miles was the most I managed to run in training so I was in unknown territory after that and I can tell you that it didn’t get any easier!
My original target had been to complete the course without walking but sadly at 11.5 miles I had to slow to walking pace as my knees screamed enough. I soon discovered however that strangely after a few minutes walking they hurt even more and I had to start running again. A cycle I repeated several times before the finish. The last 1.1 miles seemed to take forever not helped by the fact that I couldn’t recognise any landmarks to give me hope that the end was close.
By now the field had spread out to the point where I was running pretty much on my own and it was touching to say the least to receive applause and shouts of encouragement that I knew now were directed at me. They lifted my spirits to the point where I was able to keep running for the majority of that last 1.1 miles and gradually I began to realise that nothing was going to stop me finishing.
Suddenly I was approaching the last turn of the course and seeing the old church that confirmed I only had a hundred yards or so to go. My partner Gail was there behind the barriers amongst the crowds cheering us on and then I was over the line, job done.
Thanks to John for the supportive comment and to Adrian (Kira) for thinking of me whilst stuffing his face with Sunday lunch! (Kira is looking great my friend, keep it going).
Given that I now seem virtually incapable of walking or standing I’m very much hoping that a good nights sleep will bring about some sort of miraculous recovery that will allow work to continue with sanding sooner rather than later, but in the meantime I’ll relax and contemplate how building a boat has changed me. How this little weekend jog has confirmed what I was already coming to realise. That I can now set goals that seem impossible and then work diligently towards them one step at a time, until I achieve them. ‘Gleda’ has already changed me, she’s has made me a better person, she’s empowered me to make the right choices in my life, she’s made me happier, healthier and wiser. She’s done all this despite being incomplete, landlocked in a damp dark barn. What will she do for me when she’s afloat? When she’s my home, when she’s free to transport me beyond those horizons. I can’t wait to find out.