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28 days before…

Those who know me will know that I have 28 days left before I undertake my greatest physical goal ever – to run the Dublin marathon. For years I have been a regular 10K runner, mostly happy to do so but never going beyond that distance. Yesterday I went out for a run, just under 16 miles and cramp set in with a couple of miles to go – I had to walk. I think it was a combination of dehydration and tiredness that made it so bad but it hurt like hell. Thoughts flooded through my mind; would I ever make the 26.2 miles after this setback, what if I cramped up on the day? So much pressure, my goal to complete a marathon before I turn 30 and this, my last chance to do so! I’ve been training for months, trying to increase my distance and build stamina. Sometimes I have a great run, some days I wish I had never started at all. There’s a constant tide of emotion ebbing and flowing in my mind. I never thought before I set out on this path that there would be so much going on in my mind over a run. Sure, it’s a long way. Sure, not many people actually do it. Why so much pressure though? I have a time in my head, I don’t know if it’s reasonable for a first time runner but the thought of missing that time by a big margin is unthinkable – the personal disappointment, the private humiliation! Perhaps I need to meditate and clear my mind; I have another run tomorrow and I need to be mentally better before then. 28 days to go, that’s four weeks, it’s this day four weeks. The race starts at 0900, this time four weeks I’m running, I’m running for 3 hours and there’s still more to go…

9 thoughts on “28 days before…”

  1. Don’t worry, we all have our good days and bad days. On the day itself you’ll have the buzz of the actual race to help you. Are you training with a group or following some sort of plan from runnersworld etc?

  2. Thanks for the support Joe, God knows I’ll need it. 🙂 I’m following a basic programme from one of those runner sites that supposedly will get me around the course – hopefully it’s right! Sadly I’m training alone, here in Waterford. Had one friend who was interested in doing it initially but when we hit 15km he was less interested. 😉 I’ll keep it going as best I can anyhow.

  3. Well you have my unending support for even attempting this in the first place. It’s something I’ve always thought about doing but never quite got around to it (now why does that sound so familiar?)

    The adrenalin of race day will almost certainly carry you through this and it is probably extremely common for you to feel the way you do now. Training on your own possibly has a lot to do with that and it’s likely they getting through the lone training may turn out to be your biggest challenge of all.

    However, as with anything in life, things always fall into place and you will definitely pull this off – I have no doubt in my mind.

  4. Thanks James, it’s a hard slog alright. When I decided to go ahead and run it, I told as many people as I knew that I was going for it. That way the pressure was on straight away and the chances of me going off the boil were lessened as others were watching. 😉 I guess that’s why I posted this today, to send out yet another note to tell myself that I can’t give up – now the whole world knows. 🙂

  5. Best of luck with the run.

    I came up with the idea myself to do the marathon about two months ago… I then realised that i had just 3 months to train for it so I have put it off until next year when I’ll have more time.

    One thing that im sure will help you is that there will be others out there running with you. Running alone isnt as easy.

  6. Thanks Chris. You’d want to give yourself a little more than 3 months alright. 😉 I’ve been training for about 10 months now and I still feel unprepared. However a short run tonight should have me back to normal again. 🙂

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