|At the start - weather for ducks|
Three days at home led to a certain degree of cabin fever and a 'sod it, I'm going to do it anyway!' mentality, so on Friday afternoon I set off to catch a train to North Wales. I'd been bullied into entering the Snowdonia Marathon to the extent that I didn't even do the entry myself. Everyone I know who has run this one raves about it, I was sceptical. I booked my travel in advance, I couldn't travel up with anyone as they were all driving up early on Friday and I was supposed to be in school. The first after school train would get me to the nearest station at 10.15pm and because I booking in advance it was only a few pounds more for first class - free drinks, snacks and an evening meal would be very welcome.
|Up into the hills we go!|
|Scenery! Lots of it!|
|Me, actually running|
|Proof we weren't hallucinating!|
|Possibly the best cup of tea ever!|
There had been a lot of rain, and despite the fact that it did stop during the race and the sun even came out briefly, at times it felt as though we were running through a river. This made running down a steep hill somewhat challenging, but the end was in sight. I tried to remind myself that I am good at running down hill and that I only had just over a mile of pain left. As we turned on to the high street and the finish line, while not quite in sight, was just around the corner, we picked up our pace - still in our running jackets as we had never quite warmed up - and got lots of comments about a 'strong finish!' Let me tell you, it hurt like hell, but I wasn't going to slow down in front of a crowd.
|Striding out for the finish line!|
This is a stupendously fabulous marathon, brilliantly organised and wonderfully supported by the locals. The atmosphere amongst the runners was awesome. At one point I complained that my left leg was fine and I was just fed up of the right side of my body. It was suggested that I hop on the left leg.... we were on the final up hill.... but I gave it a go. And a couple of kind people caught up with us to ask if I was OK! The views are epic, even in cloudy wet weather! I think there were 12 of us out for supper that evening, all in good spirits reliving our epic day, celebrating three first marathons in our little group and catching up with a friend I haven't seen for far too long before toddling off to our beds. A beer or two and a gin and tonic or three may well have been consumed. And the good thing about taking it easy yesterday? Well, apart from the painful hip/back thing the rest of me feels fine!