On Sunday 23rd April 2017, I’m going to be running my 4th London marathon and fifth marathon in total. Seeing this hashtag on the London marathon page, got me thinking about my #reasontorun.
Firstly my reason for running on Sunday will be to fulfill my commitment to my gold bond marathon place which Brathay have kindly given me. In exchange for fundraising, people have been so generous and I’m not far off my target. Blatant plug http://www.justgiving.com/Gina-Pennington3?utm_id=26
Why do I run marathons? Only 1% of the population are crazy enough to run marathons. We are an elite bunch. I run to prove to myself that I’m worthwhile. I started to run another marathon after failing IVF left me feeling bereft and feeling in a pit of despair. What was my purpose in life? Running again was me taking charge of life. Rather than going to a very dark place.
It’s hard doing the training but getting that bling around my neck is worth all the tears and training to get there. When I’m going on my long runs that is when my demons come out. Not all the time but when I’m running I’m not distracting myself and all my negative thoughts come flooding out. Who do you think you are trying to run? You’re useless, you’re slow, these are some of the horrid thoughts I have about myself. I’m not sure why I punish myself, I’m learning to be kinder to myself and have to believe how other people perceive me. Over thinking is a special form of fear. This fear becomes worse when adding anticipation, memory, imagination, and emotion together.
I’ll be waiting on that starting line, I’ll begin to feel it. The anticipation, the doubt, the excitement, the energy. The definitiveness of what’s behind. The uncertainty of what’s ahead. It hasn’t been an easy road to get here.
There have been runs which have gone in the fuck it bin. Weeks with missed mileage. Tired legs. Hard runs. The daily constant battle of thoughts of life vs. the training plan. But there have been great moments too. The decision to train. Miles where i’ve felt like I could run forever (they happen so few and far between that I savour them) No more wondering, “Am I fit enough? Strong enough? I am.
The start line beckons. This is what I’ve trained for, those panic attacks, my mind thinking I’m not good enough. But I’m here, this is what I have been waiting for. I’ll take a deep breath, look around and soak it all in. Relish where I am, taking in all those familiar landmarks. Realize how far I’ve come from not running at the beginning of the year to being on the start line. I’m ready. I am strong and powerful. Now, let’s go get that bling. This is why I run.
Oh and and of course I run because I love all the things which are bad for me. Life is about balance.