22 days and counting…

Whoops.  I signed myself up for a half-marathon – 26th October, in Coventry.

Marathon shoes

The furthest I have ever run before is 8 miles, which I managed (miraculously) one week ago and didn’t die. (just).

So now I am slightly concerned that in 22 day’s time, I will find myself standing alongside 2000 ‘fit’ people with lean, beautiful leg muscles,  washboard stomachs, clad in hard-core runner’s vests and skimpy shorts and I will feel like I’ve gatecrashed a party consisting entirely of models from “Runner’s World” magazine. The reason for my confidence crisis is a vestige from my teenage years, when I was a member of an athletics club; in order to gain points in the league table, the coaches would enter me into events like “Senior Women’s 200m hurdles”  where I would gallop and limp around the track with all the grace of an elephant in leg calipers (I was off the day they “did hurdles” at school) and drag myself across the line as the other competitors looked on with expressions of concern and confusion.

There wasn’t a single athletics meeting I went to as a kid where I didn’t feel like dissolving into pure nervous energy; even PE lessons had my stomach churning for 2 hours before it started. Anything less than winning just wasn’t good enough for me; I put FAR to much pressure on myself to come first. I’ve had to learn to be happy with just taking part, after-all, run-walking for half an hour at 11-minute mile pace may not be the height of athletic achievement, but it’s a hell of a bigger achievement than sitting on the couch watching When Fat Pets Go Bad.

So this ‘race’ is going to be a HUGE learning-curve for me; learning to really run for myself, and not compare myself to others despite being surrounded by a crowd.  All I want is to get round the course without walking. Time and speed do not matter, just the distance.  Looks like I have a mantra there.


One Response

  1. “Time and speed do not matter” – Couldn’t agree more with your approach Julie.

    Tim (a very slow “runner”)

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