I “ran” a marathon & am Superwoman!
I use the quotes around the word ran, mostly because of the walking I did for parts of the marathon. I’m not ashamed to admit I ended up walking for a few miles, there were lots of others who did too, but enough, what about the actual marathon.
The race started in Birkenhead Park, delayed by some cars still driving down the closed road but this only allowed for more time to get to the loos, or the trees as many guys choose instead.
When we set off I tried to stay quite slow, even stopped to use a toilet at mile 2, and not charging too fast down the hill towards New Brighton and the sea front, I was sticking pretty close to the gent who was the 5:30 pacer & was feeling pretty good, and as he nipped off to use the loos at mile 9, I had a sneaky walk and a sipped some water.
The wind at the sea front was crazy & I almost lost my hat on a few occasions, and as we headed into the tunnel I started to slow, slightly from not wanting to fall & break my neck as we went down the slope, mostly from beginning to lag after 12 miles of running, so I broke out the jelly babies and forged onwards.
The sound from the other end of the tunnel was crazy, it seemed like all of Liverpool would be there at the other end of the tunnel, and it was! Some of the best crowd was just outside the tunnel (& I was given a Mars bar by one lovely lady) but I’d lost the pacer & now was pretty much on my own for the last 13 miles.
The climb up Parliament Street was the 2nd hardest part of the whole marathon, it destroyed my legs & almost made me cry! It was unrelenting an at 15-16 miles into a marathon, just plain mean, but the meanest bit was realising that it was another 8 or so miles before you’d get to go back down for the last few miles.
The winding route around Sefton Part was the hardest part, and really did sap my will to live, whilst it’s a beautiful park & there were gels & energy drinks handed out, but I walked most of it. It also started to rain, I began to think how nice a cab back to the hotel would be, but with a little support from some friends, (thanks to my Husband for getting them to text me!) I went on, and finaly got myself out of the slump at about mile 22.
The last 4.2 miles were still slow going, my legs had cramped a bit, my feet, I was certain had blisters all over, and I was cold from the rain. The Liverpool crowd were AWESOME and the people walking back from the finish line, wrapped in tinfoil & already polishing their bling cheered me on, they cheered everyone on, even us 6hr + slow pokes.
I crossed the finish line after 6:21:46 and nearly cried! Honestly. If I hadn’t seen the camera I would have been crying in my official finishers photo!
After the race I discovered 2 things, I have no blisters & my 1st 10k was 4 minutes faster than I’ve ever ran that distance!
I can’t say I’m happy with my final time, I know I could have done better. At the start of the race I choose not to set off any timer or track the run with Nike+, and I wish I had now, it *might* have made myself jog through Sefton or at least pushed for a faster walking pace , but I did finish, and it was a PB, so I’m not going to get myself too worked up about it all!
Thank you to the tweeps who tweeted support, congrats and enouragement, before during and after the marathon.
Thank you to all my friends who texted when I nearly gave up.
Thank you RunLiverpool, it was an AWESOME weekend.
Thank you Liverpool, you were fantastic support.
Thank you G, my husband, for the support, for looking after the kids in a strange town for 6 hrs, for understanding during the long training runs & the champagne & cold bath afterwards.