A few weeks before turning the Big 5-0 last year, I panicked that I hadn’t achieved all the things that I wanted to achieve by that milestone. What was I going to do about it? Sink or swim? After a short debate with myself, I decided to swim, though I literally don’t know how, and have never been much interested in learning either.
But I do know how to run. Ah ha! Very interesting, I thought and willed myself to sign up for a race and then running school to secure my goal. You see, I had been playing at running so to speak, since stalling in a race in middle school.
Thus, one of the fifty goals I set for myself to attain before my next birthday was to run a major race. Not to worry, all goals were not as lofty as this one.
Good thing or I’d have to admit defeat. Although, I’m thrilled to have gone the distance, well over two months before the deadline, I ache beyond what a fit finisher should ache.
Hence, the foot and leg massage at the Chelsea Day Spa.
Meanwhile, let me tell you a little bit about my race. I ran it, the British 10k, along with approximately 20,000 people, not in record time, but in 1 hour 19 minutes roughly. Metaphorically, I ran a blind race. All I can remember focusing on to any degree was the Blackfriars underpass because it was a haven of shade. Imagine.
Definitely an iconic route as pegged by the race promoters, the 10K starts on Piccadilly and winds through St James, goes along the Embankment, up to the City and back to Parliament Square and ends at the junction of Royal Horse Guards. Apparently, I passed St. James Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Westminster Abbey (kind of remember) and countless more notable landmarks.
Though I have driven around and sauntered around the areas many times, I didn’t see much Sunday.
My brother wrote yesterday and asked if I had run the entire time.
“Of course,” I boasted!
But I didn’t confess that around the 6k marker, I fiddled desperately with my iPhone until I finally had to stop and get some much needed music to spur me on. I must have lost a minute or two there, and once in the tunnel, I stalled after being bumped and then again on the Embankment. On Victoria Street, as I turned the final corner to head to the finish line, I went into a power walk for about five seconds and realised that walking could be the death of my finish, so back to a slow jog I went.
I made it! Photos to prove it!
Despite the hot weather and the fact that I had not trained properly throughout June, I celebrated my finish, time included, jubilantly, perhaps a little too jubilantly.
While getting ready to meet the family for some champers, I had my first glass of the bubbly. Cool and crisp though it was, I’m not bubbling today, nor was I yesterday, climbing up and down stairs in train stations. Still I feel great to have gone the distance. Never mind the hurdles, the roadblocks, the near quits.
I am a runner; for real! I can’t promise that I will become an enthusiast or a recorder breaker for that matter, but never again, knowingly, will I stall at the start line. Never!
No looking back, for me; it’s all looking ahead. Next!
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