Sunday, 4 September 2011

When One Mile feels like forever!

Sunday 4th September saw me take part in the wolverhamptonhalfmarathon  This is the second time I've taken part in this event. (Last year being my first Half Marathon)

Last year I'd trained well for this event & felt confident (but nervous) This year however my training had taken a major hammering over thelast couple of months. I wasn't able to run much. My IT injury resulting from a month of doing exercise everyday during  Junethaon to the Black Country Half Marathon. (Luckily I manged to get treatment  @ optimal-performance which helped massivly)

This meant that I only managed to get about 4 weeks of training under my belt. Which after a month of inactivity, put me on the bottom rung of the running ladder, even finding a couple of miles a real struggle.

I just had to start again and try & build it all back up again! 3 miles turned to 6 then I maanged to do 10 the week before HM.

My Pre-Race run Endomondo Running Workout: was out running 9.48 miles in 1h:36m:53s using Endomondo.

Then came the night before the run I was well prepped & ready to go. Jelly beans/Babies at the ready! I set my phone & went to bed!
As  the race had a 9:15 am start time, I'd set the alarm for 5:45 (This is a time I'm not used to nor do I want to know) But as all best laid plans! guess who's alarm didn't go off... SO AN HOUR LATER THAN I WANTED, I was tucking into breakfast!

I tend to try & stick to the same breakfast bagel, peanut butter & a poached egg.

So already an hour behind on my schedule & looking out the window my worst fears were being realised IT WAS HAMMERING IT DOWN. As Peter Kaye says "That fine rain that soaks you through"

The one thing I did do was manage to get out on time! Even though I knew I would be there in plenty of time! I was really nervous!

Getting to West Park where the race was to start. I couldn't see any directions for the start the only people I could see were the morning P***Heads. (Who I assume weren't there to run but to enjoy the flavours of 12% white cider) This creating even more nerves with in me as  we were 30 minutes from the race, this increased my nerves 5 fold, taking a chance I set off ( now if you've read previous posts I'm not the best with directions guessing or following) However on this instance  I guessed right & arrived at the start. Saying a quick hello to friends who were doing the 19k Cycle, I got on the phone to my mate Greg who was also running.
Time seemed to be speeding up far to quickly to the start. I was just getting myself ready I had jelly beans/Babies, Gels Lucazade sport drink/ Sweets (I had too many sweets & tryed to give them to some kids, which sounded very wrong "Do you want some sweets?" Anyway I got rid of the extra sweets)
The race was supposed to start at 9:15 but i think they started a couple of minutes early as we were off & I just wasn't ready! By this time I'd lost one of my gel sachets My music was was on mix of dance tracks & Chris Moyles Podcasts. My Endomondo App was running I didn't run my adidas micoach as i didn't want to use the battery of my samsung galaxys2 (These Smartphones have the worst batteries ever)

It was a mad dash as everyone vied for position, My head wasn't in the game, My pace was too fast, I hadn't turned to GPS on phone. I dropped another gel sachet, my water carrier was rubbing I could moan all day about what was going wrong!!  AND THIS IS IN THE FIRST 5 MINUTES!!!! I knew I had to start thinking positive or this would be the shortest or longest HM of my life.

I just made my mind reset & think about  running style & the music. which helped when several fast  songs kicked in this managed to get my race back on line. I managed to run without stopping for about 7 miles then I just went. Trying to push just wasn't happening, so I walked for a minute, then back to the slog, trying to chew the jelly beans was a struggle i couldn't seem to swallow them down. 8 miles in & Chris Brown - beautiful people started up (Now I dont condone what hes done but this is a great track) I was feeling the most positive of the race, my pace was good & my stride felt the best that it had! This lasted about a mile when I hit the BIG WALL, I went a bit emotional, it came from knowwhere again, I just had to walk for a couple minutes.
smiling or a grimace
Seeing the Mile 9 sign put some more energy into the boiler. Whilst i was running I came across someone who i was chatting with prior to the race, we spent the next couple of miles chatting and keeping each other going. (Well for me it helped)

I came past the Claregate pub which was crowded with well wishers & a water station, with a group of Macmillan supports encouraging me on.

The Mile 12 sign was such a welcome sight! I was spent!!! but needed to keep going, I needed to finish this run!! OH HOW I NEEDED TO FINISH! I just so wanted to stop & walk.  But knew if I did then that would be another 5 minutes added to my time. I knew i was close to last years time.

Coming up to West Park I knew where the finish line was, unlike last year  (I started to kick to early and nearly had to drag myself across the line) This year it was just one foor in fron of the other. As I rounded the corner to the finish line my family was there cheering me on! It was so lovely to see & even more to see that finish line.

Endomondo Running Workout: was out running 5.18 miles in 2h:10m:44s using Endomondo.
Endomondo Running Workout: was out running 13.10 miles in 2h:10m:25s using Endomondo.

Finally crossing the line  in 2:10:25  which though slower than last years  02:09:34
(just under a minute slower) but after my last HM of nearly 2:30 & with the injury I was happy to finish, & without an injury. (If only I hadn't of stopped that last section I  would  of beaten  my best time. GUTTED) My friend Greg finished in a great time of 2:04:36 . My fellow runner Harish Patel finished in 2:11:38.

think this picture says it all...

After a few minutes of stretching & lots of cuddles from my little girl I made my way back to my car for a Goodness shakes which a little sweet, was refreshing! Having another shake later seem to help. Only my thighs ached in the following days.

Wolves Half Marathon completed, I also passed the £500 mark on my virginmoneygiving for Macmillan nurses.

Now only the Pattingham Bells Run in October to complete my races! Well i think so. Friends are trying to get me to run the Bupa Birmingham Half in October, but i'm not too sure yet! I'm waiting to see if my names comes up in the London Marathon Ballot. Then thats another big decision!!!!

Finished & with my medal!

Photos used without permission but with great thanks & appreciation from Brain Smith Mike Hall  racephotos

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