Thought I would finally post an update of my post c25k journey.
I started c25k in April this year with the aim (slightly naively) of doing the Cardiff Half Marathon this October. It wasn’t easy and I laughed, I cried and I had a few strops but I graduated the beginning of July along with a bunch of other lovely folks from the c25k community. Hello to all of you 🤗🤗🤗🤗
After c25k I felt a bit lost and just tried to keep on running through the long, hot summer and up the distances slowly but steadily.
Once September came we started doing 9 or 10 miles every Sunday and to clarify I was not running all of that but built upto running nearly 3/4 of that and it wasn’t super quick but I was covering the distance. I should point out here the we includes my amazing hubby who keeps me going literally through thick and thin, sunshine and rain, good days and bad.
All through this whole process I told no-one as I had this great fear of letting family and friends down and almost being ridiculed as even though this year I’ve done more running than in the last thirty years combined I haven’t lost much weight, it’s just shifted around and I’ve firmed up a fair bit but I am still overweight. My comfort blanket was the canal as all we ever encountered were a few cyclists, fellow joggers and dog walkers.
So the Cardiff Half Marathon was Sunday 7th October and the week before I still hadn’t opened my race pack and was having sleepless nights with all my anxieties running riot. I was anxious about running with other people (20,000 other people), would I finish before the 4hrs 30mins deadline, would people laugh at me and most of all would I just fail and let my husband and myself down.
Saturday dawned and I just woke with a calmer mindset and thought I have to do this. I’ve put the hours in and even if I walk it I can do that in 4hrs 30mins. My hubby was over the moon and that morning was spent getting last minute things like a box of safety pins, jelly babies and plasters just incase!!
Sunday we woke at 6am, got to Cardiff for 8-30am and handed in our baggage on a glorious South Wales sunny morning. Our bibs were yellow as we had put our finishing times down as 3hrs 30mins as for me that was a pb!!!
The wait for the walk up to the start line was excruciating and I felt like I had a brick in my tummy the nerves were so bad. I was smiling but inside I was silently screaming what are you doing!!! You don’t do this kind of thing, you give up, this is beyond you but I kept taking deep breaths and fighting back the feeling to run back to the car!!
The start for me personally was horrendous I ended up running my fastest ever kilometre and a few times fellow runners caught my feet because I had nowhere to hide. I got to the third kilometre and finally started to relax into my running and take stock of what I was doing and start to look up and smile at the whole occasion. Five kilometres was the first water station and it was much needed!! The half way point took us across Cardiff barrage and the bay and the sun had come out with a vengeance. Running through the city was simply amazing but then we hit miles 10 to 12 around Roath Park and that was my slowest two miles.
Finally we reached the last stretch and I could feel my emotions starting to surface. We crossed the line and I sobbed my heart out. The sense of achievement and my actual pride in actually achieving something was simply overwhelming. I cried when I was given my medal, my good bag and my banana!!! Have to also mention how amazing the volunteers were around the whole course and all the people lining the way.
Apologies for how long this post is but I just wanted to get across to anyone having any doubts about this process you can do it. This program works and although a half marathon was a big leap I am so chuffed I saw it through. I am still overweight and have hang ups being seen running in public but I have a medal and a T-shirt and no one can take that off me. Best of all I’ve already registered my interest to do the 2019 Cardiff Half!!! Who would have thought c25k could have made me love running but it has.. so go for it.. no one can stop you but you. You got this 🤩