13.1 miles, half a marathon but definitely a full challenge

I ran my first half marathon last year in Richmond with a good friend of mine, L’Innocent. Well, ‘ran’ would be a loose term for what I did given that I had to go to the loo twice during the race (once for a wee and another for a poo), I stopped at the 8th mile and walked for at least 3 miles before attempting to run again on blistered soles. At one point the pain from my blisters were so bad I had to get a medic to patch up my soles so I could hobble past the finish line. Thanks L’Innocent for staying with me throughout!

This year, I did actually RUN my first half marathon, partially with V0 (he left me at the 6th mile mark with his gazelle-like legs) and I ran for the first 11 miles before getting some serious cramps and walking, hobbling, sprinting the last 2.1 miles. I finished within 2.5 hours, which for #babyelephant pace wasn’t too shabby! Extremely proud (and jealous!) of V0 who smashed his first half-marathon.

Finishing this half marathon gave a great sense of achievement but also made me realise that:

  1. I still hated running. Well perhaps ‘hate’ is too strong a word now. I just don’t think I enjoy running in MOST circumstances.
  2. No matter how much you run, always respect the mileage.
  3. My body is slowly but surely falling apart, perhaps time to push myself less. From my back knee injury, to my right shin hurting (thanks to a dodgy right ankle), my fixed-through-surgery-but-still-hurts right shoulder and my broken-and-grown-back-but-still-hurts left elbow.
  4. Running a marathon may remain elusive due to point 1. and point 3.

My training programme was more balanced this time around – I focused on strength-training with a personal trainer which really helped balance out my injured body parts and I actually ran less! I also did a lot of my long runs with the Rotherhithe Runners. This group of lady runners always push me to run quicker and further! I’ll be honest and say that I have gotten to a point where I do enjoy my 4-7 miles runs, especially if I’ve had enough sleep and rest beforehand. And that’s saying a lot for someone who has hated running as long as I have….

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