Earlier this year I wrote a blog entitled 'It's a marathon, not a sprint’. Well the marathon is now over and I can confirm that it definitely was a marathon and at no point a sprint.
As of today, together with my sister and my brother in law we have raised £10,214 (including gift aid). Grief Encounter raised a total of £40,000 through the Marathon and we are so proud of our contribution to their cause. To put this into context, our pot is enough to provide 20 children with 1-2-1 support for a whole year. The thought of helping towards that is extremely rewarding and makes the slog of training through the snow, wind, rain and freezing winter fully worthwhile. The below video gives you a better idea of what this amazing charity does.
The day itself was an experience I’ll never forget. I always knew it was going to be tough, but I wasn’t quite prepared for some of the challenges I encountered.
Firstly - it just happened to be the hottest marathon on record! From speaking to seasoned runners, it’s estimated that the heat would have added on around 20-30 minutes to runners’ times. I am generally quite a competitive person, but I’m happy with my time of 4:37. I also stopped to help some friends I saw along the way and do like to think that if it wasn’t for that, and for the temperature, I’d have managed to come in closer to 4 hours. Though not sure I’ll be doing it again to test that theory.
The other challenge I hadn’t factored in was that running around people and not keeping to the middle line meant I actually ran approximately 28 miles. The extra distance was really frustrating when it came through my earphones. It made it harder to pace my miles, then getting to 26 miles and still having two miles to go was brutal.
However, the atmosphere was incredible – the sheer volume of supporters shouting my name, spurring me on, offering water, sweets, oranges (the oranges were brilliant) was tremendous. And seeing my family and friends along the route was such a boost.
All in all, it was a brilliant experience and something I’m really pleased to have accomplished.
We’re now going to look forward to the next challenge. Hopefully we can find something that the whole Engage team can participate in as we want to keep pushing on with the fund raising. Expect to hear from us soon!