I will not apologize…

…for not being here. Because all my posts start like that.

It is now Friday September 30th, and I am writing this blog, so you should have gleaned that I managed to survive the half-marathon!

But there is so much more I need to tell you before I tell you about race day, so here goes:

Niketown with TeamBangsontheRun2

So you checked out the photos right? Aren’t the TeamBangs gals just plain gorgeous?!

We went to Nike Town to meet Charlotte Purdue who told us all about her Olympic dreams, how she got chosen at random by her coach (even though she didn’t win her race) to become a professional runner, and all her pre-race superstitions. 

Even more exciting – we found out who won the competition for a pair of the brand-spanking-new Lunar Glide+3 Nike ID’s, which Bangs ran on her blog!

The competition was fierce, coming down to a few votes between Kelly (@kelanjo) and me. But luckily, I won!!!!!! (this is the most exciting thing I’ve ever won, in my life– just so you know). I got to sit at a huge iMac and go over my design with one of the fabulous designers in the Nike ID studio while the girls looked on and a photographer took pics (look at me getting gassed-anywho!) 

The day was over far too soon (as always with any Team Bangs meet-ups), and with a train to catch, I headed off back to Leeds.

The following Wednesday, I received a large package to my work offices. The lovely people at Freud who were working with Nike had re-sent me a pair of luminous LunarGlide+2’s to train in

My lovely Lunarglides

as well as some hot pink shorts and a brightly coloured dri-fit  tee (my original set had been swallowed in a scandalous postal black hole!)

My hot pink shorts and yellow tee

My new trainers made running a dream, and inspired me to get out even more – I went out by myself and even changed my route! Though I soon began to become swamped with work once more, my motivation to train had increased, knowing I was being properly supported by shoes prescribed for my gait.

The Long-awaited, Not Quite 10 Mile Run

In my lunch hours at work I noticed quite a lot of the girls tweeting about how they had been attempting or preparing for their big 10 mile run. The thought made me quake in my boots! No way was I ready to run 10 miles, our longest run to date had been 14.7 kilometres (don’t ask me what that is in miles) and having been under the weather, it had taken us well over 2 hours. Having registered for Run to the Beat in an attempted time of 2hours 30minutes, I was worried. 

Planning a 10 mile route proved difficult, so I settled for 9.6 miles, and then late one Saturday evening, off we trotted. Other than not running very frequently prior to this, I had been doing my best to prep for the race by trying to get more sleep and drinking lots of water. I must say that water is key. You’ll understand why later.

This particular evening was quite warm, and we went strong for the first 4-5 miles without stopping. Along the way we encountered lots of oddities, including a man shouting into his phone so loudly we thought he was having a fight with someone, all the more scary because we were running through the ‘hood’, another man who told me that running “wasn’t good for the old joints y’know! ” and a particularly motivational pair who shouted “come on! knees up, knees up! keeeeep running!”.  

By the time we got to mile 7, I was dying of thirst and could not run for more than a mere minute at a time. Solution? Water! But where from?

Half a mile later I was running as best as I could towards a set of take-aways. No, I didn’t stop for some chips on the way, but the lovely lady in the Chinese take-away did give me a soup bowl full of water, which I supped on in the bus stop until I could carry on. 

And then, I was off! 9.6 miles, in 2hours and 14minutes. How awesome is that?

Not only had we run longer – but our fitness had improved drastically.

This was the turning point. I knew I could do this.

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