It took 5 hours and 8 minutes to complete - but that does not matter because I have finished a marathon.
I actually found the day quite good fun. There were lots of supporters out on the streets of Paris. We started off lining up by the Arc de Triomphe and ran down the Champs Elysees, do not ask me when we then went other than for a long run round Paris with a lot of it along the river taking in the Eiffel tower, which I almost missed as I was not really looking where I was going by that point. There were various bands on the side of the streets, which were a great motivation.
I was pretty impressed by the organisation, water stops every 5 km with water, oranges and bananas (making the ground pretty dangerous at points as covered in banana skins.)
Many people who had done marathons told me they were a race of two halves, the first 20 miles and the last 6. This made me pretty nervous as I crossed mile 20 but was still feeling pretty good (considering) and this lasted until about 21.5 miles. However I was picked up with a nice glass of red wine - yep you read that correctly the French being French serve wine on their marathons and it kinda helps!! Stopped to walk for a bit, sip my wine and chat to who was around me then carried on with an added spring in my step.
By 24 miles I was suffering and I was really struggling. Seeing the British Heart Foundation supporters at mile 25 really spurred me on to the finish line. And there we have it, Heather the pacemaker girl, runs a marathon - what's next? Am quite tempted to try and finish in sub 5 hours!!
You can still sponsor us for completing this event.....
My entire life has been taken over by marathon training, with only two weeks to go the pressure is on. Three nights a week are taken up with running then every weekend we fit in a long run. Following on from the half marathon I have done:
8th March - 15 miles (Banbury 15 race) 14th March - 19 miles
And now we are winding down so this weekend is was 12 miles.
Our usual long route involves a trip round Blenheim Palace, which has beautiful grounds I think I will never be able to look at in the same way again! The 20 miles was really hard work, with this last four miles being agony, adding another 6 miles seems impossible but I can but try on the day!!
Please remember we are raising money for the British Heart Foundation, a very worthy and relevant cause, so please sponsor us.
These days I have no time for blogging, my whole life is consumed by Marathon training. Yesterday we did the Brighton Half Marathon as part of our training. 13.1 miles along the Brighton sea front to Hove then the Marina and back to central Brighton. It was actually quite an enjoyable experiance and good dressed rehearsal for the Marathon.
The first few miles went in pretty quickly did not really feel it until mile 7 or 8 when it started getting harder. Then just near about mile 11 we had some evil hills near the Marina, the worst thing being the finish line was in-sight as we ran towards it then did a U-turn and ran in the opposite direction for while before turning back for the final straight. My aim was to do it in 2:20 so when my official time was texted to me while we were having lunch (very organised I must say!) I was really chuffed with 2h:20m:35s. Joe and I ran the whole way together and it was great support for both of us. It was never about time, just about crossing the finish line and I am glad we took it steady and finished in one piece. So now we just continue training for the Paris Marathon, which we are doing in aid of the British Heart Foundation, any donations will be greatly received.
Recently I have taken up running. Do not know what really got me started, wanting to get fit and prove to myself I can do it I guess. Started out running/ walking about 3 miles and have steadily been improving. Quite quickly got up to the 10K (6 Miles) mark and was pretty proud of myself.
Last weekend I entered my first race, the Eynsham 10k, I was very chuffed to have finished it in 1h01m56s. Bit gutted to have been so close to the hour, be we can't have everything. I was also quite excited to be in the same race as Thom Yorke, even if he did beat me. Running in a race was fun and much easier than training.
So coming on leaps and bounds in the first few months has spurred me on for greater things. I have never thought I was that fussed about turning thirty and had one aim in life, to have a baby before I'm thirty. Well with going to Cameroon one thing and another that has not panned out so I needed something else to do before thirty (not a whole crazy list , like some people) which turns out to be a marathon.
So we (Joe and I) are booked in to the Brighton half marathon in February and the Paris marathon in April. After this I think I will just be doing 10k's but you never know I might get the marathon bug!!
We will be doing the Paris marathon for the British Heart Foundation, who better for me to support. I am sure fund-raising will commence soon, watch this space. For now I just keep going out 2 or 3 times a week for a nice run with Nik, my personal trainer/ motivator/ running buddy/ crazy friend who does triathlons and will never talk me in to doing one. Up to 13k so almost there for the half marathon - long way to go to prepare for Paris - eek!
I was so excited last Tuesday morning knowing that by the time I got home from work our first vegetable box would have arrived. I was even more excited at 07:30 when it did arrive and was gutted I had to rush out to work. Picked up a very juicy tasty apple from the box to enjoy with my lunch though.
So we had a wonderful mixture of stuff including a very bizzare looking cauliflower and some delicious red peppers.
The hope is that I will need to go shopping less often and we will get out of our cooking rut and sample some new stuff.
We get to choose what we don't want, carrots was at the top of the list and we see the produce for the next box a week in advance so you can have stuff taken out.
Its great.... next week comes Kale - what on earth do I do with that?
Last weekend we had a girly weekend in Croyde, Devon where I had my first try at surfing. I have been body-boarding a few times before but this was my first attempt at surfing. It was really difficult but great fun. Sarah gave us a few lessons in the living room before we left and made it look really easy. Paddle paddle paddle, jump - easy! However once we got out to sea it was no way that easy. Getting out to sea was hard let alone getting on the board and paddling and to even attempt to jump - that was just plain crazy! I did get up on to my knees which was a great achievement. It was hard work and I struggled to carry my board back to the car afterwards, my arms ached for ages. It was great fun though and with a full wetsuit, boots and gloves it was even quite warm! Planning the next trip.....
For the first time in my working life I work Monday to Friday. This has its pros on cons but one big plus point is having lots of fun weekends. This weekend was just beautiful. Devi and Chris, some good friends of ours came to visit. Saturday morning we went to the Ashmolean museum in Oxford which was great, my highlights being the mummy in the Egyptian section and the huge chocolate cake in the cafe.
We then went on a little boating adventure. Took the car up to the predicted terminus of the trip (The Jollyboat man pub) and wandered down the canal to catch our boat. Stuart and Sarah had hired a narrow boat for the weekend and invited us to join them. We me them at on of the locks not far from where we live. We waited quite a while for them to arrive and had great fun watching people travel through the locks. From 35 year experts to stag and hen parties bashing all the banks.
Not long after we joined the boat we met some kids fretting about a lost dog. We soon caught up with the little cocker spaniel swimming away in the middle of the canal. We tried to entice it on to the boat but he swam right past. Nik and Joe both jumped on to the bank to go and help. They came back a little while later with a very wet Nik. The dog just kept swimming with no hope of getting to the bank so Nik had no choice but to wade in and get it. Unfortunately he was on his phone at the time - on hold, trying to get some help. So he now has a wet possible dead phone all in the name of being a local hero. The dog was delivered back to its owners and we carried on out merry way to the pub.
On Friday we went to Tom and Aideen's wedding. Tom is one of my best friends from uni who I shared a house with for the whole four years. Tom is also Joe's cousin and we met through him. tom was the best man at our wedding and we love him lots.
So attending his wedding was fab. All my old Uni friends were there (apart from the lovely Laura who is living in Dubai) and all of Joe's lovely family were there.
Even though it poured with rain pretty much from the moment we arrived it was still a beautiful day. It was quite bizzare having to share my time between some of my closest friends amd my in-laws. I was having great fun but remembering I had to be on my best behaviour at the same time!!! No smooching on the dance floor, what would my Mother-in-law think!