Apologies for not blogging last week, I had a mad mad day and then decided just to take the week off.
So last week I COMPLETED, yes I COMPLETED the Great South Run all in aid of Anthony Nolan. I even got the medal to prove it!! I have to admit I walked most of the course but I am still really proud that I did it! The course was great fun, a great way to see Portsmouth in a very short amount of time.
As we headed to the start line I felt sick with nerves. I had trained…well maybe not as much as I had wanted so decided to walk the course. As I set off, with the Hamilton soundtrack playing in my ears, the sun beaming down on me and the klaxon flaring, I knew it was time. I was not turning back now.
After attempting *attempting* to jog some of the course I noticed another walker and so decided to try and catch up with her. She ended up being my course buddy and she helped me get through the course in 2 hours 53 minutes.
I started off hopeful and full of energy, I didn’t even mind that a whole sea of runners overtook me! The first mile, I felt electric and then the second and third came in a flash. Being given access to the dockyards was amazing! I think it was the highlight of the course!
What I didn’t realise is that the energy would soon slow and I would start to feel like it was no good. There was no way I could finish this run. As we walked past the place I am living, part of me yearned to go back. It was about midday by this point and the Great Run App (which, I highly recommend by the way…) was telling me I would be finished at 1:45pm. This just felt like ages away and with runners who were finished walking back I decided to fight it and carry on. I had to stop thinking about the time and the miles I had done and those I had left to do and just carry on and enjoy the course and the weather!
As we reached the first water point I was so thankful to get some fluid in me, I was slightly worried about getting ill as the sun was really hot and I had not had water since a couple of hours before. I sipped it slowly and carried on. I had to carry on.
Getting to the halfway point was tiring, but gave me a huge confidence boost at the same time. By now it was about 12:30 so I knew I had roughly an hour and a half left. My knees were starting to hurt, my legs were aching and I was close to giving up. Thinking about all the runners that had finished was hard. I wanted that to be me. So? I carried on.
All the supporters at the side of the road were lovely, getting hi-5’s, and words of encouragement from strangers really boosted me on. People who had never met me were willing me on to do this. If they thought I could do it…then I could! It was all about having a positive attitude and quickly getting myself out of any negative thoughts. I was going to finish this!
The next three miles were a blur…I think they were the hardest three miles as I just wanted to be finished and I knew I still had a while left. (Actually, I lie….mile 8-9 was hardest!!) I can’t really remember much of miles 5-8 apart from the fact that we were given Lucozade at mile 7 and it tasted great and gave me a much-needed energy boost and that the course went around Eastney. We walked past a pub with people standing outside having a pint and I said “drink one for me…”
I had synced the Great Run App with Facebook so it would post updates on my page for me and the support I had on my Facebook page was again…just amazing! Thank you to everyone that was messaging me and liking the posts. It felt like you were all there with me.
Mile 8-9 was probably the worst. My knees were now in a considerable amount of pain and I just wanted to throw the towel in. I knew I could do it, but the last three miles definitely felt slower than the first three. I knew I had slowed down as well and was just trying to find energy from somewhere. My aim was to cross the finish by the time the Hamilton soundtrack (which was 2hrs 30 mins) had finished.. as I got closer and closer to the end of the soundtrack I lost confidence…the time I was due to be finished had gone up to 2pm and every step I took hurt!
9 miles gave me a great surge of confidence and energy (and no..that wasn’t just the jelly babies that I could have eaten about 10,000 more of!) I was so close. I couldn’t believe that I had almost finished and was getting more and more emotional about it! I pushed through the pain.
800m, 400m, 200m…..the markers counted down the metres left and as I got close to the finish I jogged to the end. I HAD DONE IT!! I could not quite believe it and even as I type this I still cannot believe it! It was an amazing day and I want to say thank you to the event organisers, Anthony Nolan and all my friends and family for supporting me through a tough 10-mile course. As I got in the Uber I ached (yes I got an Uber home I was not walking another 15 minutes, especially as I had walked down there!) I looked at my phone at my steps and was astounded!!
Overall it was a great experience and I was so glad to cross the line, receive my medal and raise a fantastic amount of money for charity. As I got in the shower I felt so warm and proud. I was so proud of myself for completing it and not giving up. And guess what?! I want to do it all over again next year!
I will leave you with a collage of a few more photos and my JustGiving link…just in case you feel compelled to donate after reading this blog post of mine!
If you have got this far thank you so much for reading and enjoy the remaining photos from an absolutely amazing day!
Until next week!