So Comrades 2015 has come and gone and thankfully I have a medal to show for it. I knew from the get go that I didn’t put all the training in that I should’ve – especially for an uprun. The upruns are difficult and there are too many hills to count or name.
So yes, I was apprehensive and scared but I knew I had to do it.
At the start I went into the pen and sat down and just centered myself and tried to focus on the day ahead. I was so deep within myself that a fellow runner had to tap me on the shoulder to get me to pay attention to my surroundings after everybody got up and started to move forward.
And then it was the anthem (I always cry), shosholoza, Chariots of fire, the cock crowing and the cannon going off and the run was on.
And I just kept going. First goal – get to Hubby in Pinetown.
And so the day progressed – the whole time my goal was to get to the next point where I will see Hubby and two friends.
When I had about 60km’s left to go, I hit a bit of a mental low point and my negative side was saying, why should you go on, you are only a third into this, there are 2 thirds left and you are tired and there are still a multitude of hills to conquer. And you have shown that you can do it, you’ve done it 5 times already. Just sit down, phone Hubby and get him to pick you up. And the most amazing thing happened – I went past a couple of kids that chanted: “Keep it up, you can do, don’t give up”. The only time during the whole race that I heard that – and I kept going.
And I finished in 11:24 – not my best time, not my worst time but I’m satisfied.
I have once again realised that I have the mental strength and the physical stamina for these long runs. People that normally run me into the ground, people that will finish an hour before me on a marathon was left behind on Comrades day.
So 6 Comrades medals later and I still sometimes think that I’m not a real runner – that somehow I’m just faking it!!!
And now I have a whole heap of work to get through…