I usually end my posts with a message of encouragement. Today I’m going to start with one.
Don’t ever let go of your dreams. If your dream is to run a 5km, a 10km a half marathon or a full marathon, just keep working towards it. Don’t look at where you are now and think it’s just too hard, I have too far to go with running to reach my goal. I want you to think that if she can do it, I can do it too. Because if I can go this far with running then truly, YOU CAN TOO! It wasn’t that long ago that running up our drive way to our letter box (1.2km) seemed like an unattainable dream. In fact at the time it WAS an unattainable dream; I didn’t think I would ever succeed. But then I did it, I achieved my goal. If I can go this far with running you can too!
The last long run
Today was our last long run before Melbourne Marathon on Sunday 18 October. 30kms. It’s the most perfect spring day. Sunny, warm in the sun but with a cool breeze, perfect. There are still tiny patches of gleaming white snow visible on the Great Wester Tiers. We couldn’t have ordered a better long run day if we’d tried.
Team Pauly, Louise, Janette and the Unsporty Woman did three x 10km Meander loops. This would have to be one of my most favourite courses.
We go through the little town of Meander, over the Meander River, then out into farmland all the while running beside the Great Western Tiers. It’s spring so there are baby lambs and calves dotted all over the place. We run and see old Cheshunt House, then it’s out through more farmland before crossing over the Meander River for a second time. Today there were mainlanders out in force (this is what Tasmanians call people from the other states of Australia). Well, we saw about six of them, six mainlanders with their interstate plated vehicles. That’s a lot for a sleepy little place like Meander. They were donning their waders out for a fish in our pristine clear waters (trout fishing is big in Tassie). The water is freezing because the snow is still melting. Finally after crossing the Meander River for the second time we get onto the main road and then run back to the picnic spot that is our loop starting point before doing it again. Then again.
I love this course. For me it is a course of hope. I ran this on my 50th Birthday in November last year and loved every step. How lucky am I to be 50 and preparing for my second marathon? This course revives the soul and makes the confidence soar.
Today’s run was perfect. Perfect company, perfect weather and a great run. The fatigue hit me about the 27km mark, I could so easily have walked from that point; my body was screaming at me, my head was telling me that walking was an excellent idea. I employed my new mental toughness skills. I heard my little YouTube lady (I shared this on my last post) telling me to breath in “I” and out “Am”. I don’t really know what that means but it seems to work – I’m new to this mindfulness stuff. I concentrated on my posture. I told myself that indeed I am that person who refuses to quit. The mantras came and of course right at the end, when it was really needed, I pulled out the big guns, my all-time favourite song to sing in my head: The Happy Wanderer. You may have a giggle at this, but this song has got me through some tough runs. Thanks Happy Wanderer AND your nap sack. Who knew that this song has such amazing power?
My average pace today? 6:40 minutes per km. Did I walk? Not one step. Am I proud of myself? Yes I am.
Pauly, Janette and Louise had great runs too, finishing up about 10 minutes before me. They cruised along at happy pace and left me to slow down a little for the last half of the last loop which worked out really well for all of us. Melbourne Marathon here we come. I’m so grateful to my running friends in the way they slow down to run with me, I couldn’t do it without their support. AND I’m immensely proud of them too. They are all on track for an excellent race.
Now the taper begins
The taper does begin today but not so the mental toughness training. I’ll be visualising and working on my mantras ready for the big day.
Dear fellow runners, what may seem tough now will become more doable. Who knew that I could ever run 27kms before starting to get tired? Who knew that I have the mental and physical strength to keep on running when every part of me wants to stop? I may have been that girl who so easily gave up with sports and running but I have become the woman who refuses to quit. I am a marathoner.
Happy running 🙂
PS If you ever need some farm gates opened please ask Pauly or I, don’t ask Janette and Louise. Two phone calls to work out how to do it before they finally got through to the farm house. Pauly and I were not laughing really.
PPS Janette learnt today that Team Huey, Dewey and Louie are Olympic quality burpers. But what happens on the run stays on the run? Well this was at the end so I don’t think that rule counts. As far as burping goes H, D and L were on the powerade and gingerbeer, while J was on her cocabella coconut water…that might have something to do with it.