• Day Seven

    Today felt like it was going to be a big day; at 13.1 miles I would have completed 25% of the whole challenge and at the end I would have run for one whole week (183.4 miles)! A day of milestones.

    It didn't bode well when I woke up in the night with extremely sore legs. I wondered how I would be able to run a marathon if they hurt this much just lying in bed... But they can't have been too bad as I rolled over and went back to sleep. And at 4am most of the pain had gone! By 6am there was virtually no pain at all. I was really surprised by this as I had resigned myself to having a few days of getting used to the pain and then it just upped and went.

    I had an interview with bbc radio essex at 6.20am this morning too. I was really nervous and wondered if I would manage to be coherent and be able to talk in an interesting way so early in the morning! I was nearly thrown when the first question was: why? why? why? why? why? why?!! But then I got into my usual waffle mode and got through it! I was pleased that I mentioned the performance is part of Escalator East to Edinburgh as I wouldn't be here without them; Escalator supports artist from my region to come up to Edinburgh and as well as providing marketing support and a recognised programme to be part of it, it supports you pastorally as well; with peer support, networking and creative development. It really is a great opportunity. I also got to say thank you to everyone back home for their amazing support. My husband told me that they were playing the bit where I said running a marathon is like making a cup of tea at various points during the rest of the day.

    I was joined at the start today by Andrew Jeske - looking very dashing in a kilt. We were started by another one of the Palace guards and off we went. Andrew is part of Jog Scotland and runs (!) 9 different running groups for people of all different running abilities. If you're thinking about joining but you aren't sure I'd say go for it! Andrew is kind and calm, obviously used to crossing roads thinking about the people he is with, and happily kept to my pace. He had lots of useful advice and was proud to see the runners at Jog Scotland develop their confidence and their ability.

    On the first mile up we were also joined by Ally Cameron. Ally is training to run 10 marathons in 10 days next May, so it was good to be able to chat about how he is preparing, how I prepared and also get advice from Andrew who has a lot of experience. Ally is raising money for an organisation that helps under priviledged kids: www.brathay.org.uk (@brathay on twitter). You can donate by texting FOZZ77 £5 to 70070.

    Andrew stayed with me until about 9.15am and Ally stayed for about the first 16.5 miles (maybe a bit longer) and I really enjoyed my time with them. Sometimes we were all chatting, sometimes a couple of us were chatting and sometimes we ran along without chatting. It felt like we settled into an easy rhythm quite early on and the miles just flew by (relatively). We spent a lot of time talking about running giving us the opportunity to appreciate what is in the world; taking the time to look around and notice architechiture and nature and life itself. The beauty of a simple act like running is that it allows you to connect not only with your body, but because it is ritualistic and repetitive it becomes meditative and soothing (once you get over the aches and pains). A lot of people say they can't run for more than about 10 minutes or so, but I think they are they hardest minutes of a run. Your body has to adapt to the new speed you are travelling at and it might moan about it for a bit but if you stick with it you can settle into it, relax and enjoy the strength of mind and body that you get from running.

    Tom also ran with me today. Part of the Escalator support is having someone to hand out flyers for your show. I asked if I could have someone to hand me food and drink instead, to give Edd a break. We were very lucky to be given Tom to do this. He arrives at 9am (or just before) each day and stays until 10am whilst Edd has breakfast. Tom has a very dry sense of humour and enjoys poking fun at life so it's great to come back to him each mile. Within a very short space of time he has become an important part of the team. After his shift finished at 10am Tom then started to run with me, and he stayed right til the end: 12 miles! I think I upset him when I said he had done 3 miles, but actually he had done 7! I think the time just flew by! I laughed a lot whilst Tom was with me, mainly because he is really clumsy so it was like running with Norman Wisdom. He was also trying to teach me some code to remember numbers, but in my oxygen deprived state I was struggling a bit.

    Today's marathon has been my favourite so far; the miles flew past quickly; there wasn't too much pain and I had good company all the way through. At the end I honestly felt that I could go out and run another marathon, it felt so good. I'm really appreciating feeling good, physically and mentally. I'm aware it may not last so I'm trying to remember it in order to use it as a touchstone to try and get back to if I need it.

    Today has been a day for appreciation, a chance to enjoy the mile, relish the marathon, say thank you to everyone back home for their phenomenal support, and be genuinely pleased to be meeting so many kind and inspiring people.

    1 Comment

    • 1. Aug 25 2013 7:13PM by Heather

      JammyBilly (Andrew Jeske) is indeed an inspiration. So too is Vicki Weitz.

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