I started running 2 years ago with the main desire to keep in shape. I ran my first race, a 10 miler in September 2012 and was immediately smitten. 2013 would be the year I would run the Dublin marathon. The training really started early in the year with 5 and 10ks but running a marathon was going to be a different ball game altogether!
One night in early April my wife came home and asked me if I was serious about running a marathon? She’d signed me up with Mary and Forget The Gym, it was the impetus I needed! After 3 inspirational workshops I found myself running the ‘long runs’ in the Phoenix park every Saturday morning in August and September. Me and a dozen or so fantastic girls dragging ourselves through mile after mile in all weathers (mostly warm!) being the token male in the group had it’s privileges and there was always plenty of company in the visitor centre for well deserved and ‘guilt free’ coffee and cake at the end.
The day of my first marathon I will never forget.
“Pace yourself, don’t go off too quick, take plenty of fluid but above all enjoy it” – Mary’s parting words as we set off for the start line. The first 10 miles were ‘easy’ – I’m sure I was Kenyan in a previous life, pace yourself -Pah, I’m on for 4 hours here!!! Then it hits you around 20 miles – the dreaded ‘wall’ and Mary’s words echo in my head – pace yourself! Enjoy it!!!!! I have never dug so deep to get through the last few miles but the feeling of crossing the line in Merrion square was incredible and worth all the training and pain.
2 hours later and I’m sitting in a bar with a cold beer thinking never again……
2 days later and the muscles are beginning to stop aching, maybe I could have shaved 15 minutes off that time?
If I had started slower there would have been more in the tank at the end……
Maybe next year…….
What the hell…..
Definitely next year…….
Thank you girls, thank you Mary – couldn’t have done it without you!
(July 2014 update – Its true, Duncan is back again this year on his improvers marathon programme…)