7 MARATHONS IN 7 DAYS, IN 7 COUNTRIES
I used to hate running. No honestly, this isn’t one of those annoying things people say, when they are actually secretly fantastic at something and just trying to be disgustingly modest.
I could not run 1 mile, I would set off sprint paced, going far too fast and after about 5 minutes look at my watch and think, “oh sod this” I ain’t running like this for 3 miles. So, I’d inevitably turn round, back to the car and go and reward myself with a treat sized pack of maltesers…a recurring pattern, as you’ll find out.
Anyways around the age of 22 I started to run, I had been training for about a year in the universities rowing team and was a decent level of fitness, not running fitness- but anyone that rows, will knows (sorry couldn’t help the rhyme) that rowing gives you a pretty solid mental toughness. In fact if you an average university rower, chances are, you’ve got a tough noggin. So for the first time ever, I just kept running. I ran for 3 miles and felt bloody fantastic afterwards- literally to the point of nearly signing up for the marathon ballot.
I then ran for a couple of times a week for the next year of so, but never more then 6 or 8 miles, max.
When I returned from the Island, I automatically signed up for my second attempt at the Atlantic Ocean (see Row Like A Girl), this however was over a year away. Determined not to let the momentum of The Island drown, along with Jamie (the most wonderful person in the world), we set ourselves just a small challenge of RUNNING 7 Marathons, we then decided to do it consecutively in 7 DAYS and well, that just wasn’t tough enough, so we added in 7 COUNTRIES- all for Breast Cancer Care I may add.
I had less then 12 weeks to train until we began the first marathon in Milan, and training in the winter months is not ideal, especially for someone who has never run more then 6 miles and the last time they ran was over 9 months ago- woops! Nevertheless, I have learnt a good few things about myself in the past few years, some of which are fantastic, some I wish I could unlearn- but when I put my mind to something, or I tell people I’m doing it- that generally means I’m going to do it, and Ill stop at nothing to complete it.
Unfortunately that nugget of info did not apply to Jamie, who alas on day 3 of the marathons, feigned injury- I’m joking of course, he actually had bursitis in his knee joint- think swelling etc. I however ran 4 back to back, survived a car crash in Belgium which wrote off our campervan, had to get help towing it back the UK- but unscathed I finished with the London Marathons on the 26th of April 2015, more surprisingly with my best time of the whole week.
I can hand on my heart say, running these damn marathons was the most physically challenging thing I HAVE EVER DONE. Good LORD, by the end of the week I was missing 4 toenails (2 of which are yet to grow back), my right hip felt not to dissimilar to, how I would imagine a fracture to feel -and my calves were solid lumps of concrete. Yet, I had done it, minus the car crash, and we raised a nice chunk for Breast Cancer Care too.
I promised myself after this I would never run a marathon ever again, however I’ve recently signed myself up for the Wadi Rum Ultra, in Jordan-September 2016.
Its 300km over 5 days and dare I say it- tougher then the famous MDS!
Wish me luck- my toenails need it.