Little Runner Gal

Running, eating, sleeping and all the bits in between

2013: The year I ran and ran and ran

on December 31, 2013

2013 has been the year my running really kicked off. After first getting out on the roads in November 2012, this year has really been amazing and I’m now in a place I never dreamed of. I’m healthier, happier, slightly less stressed and I feel like I have so much more purpose. I’ve got an actual interest, a hobby, something I ‘do’, something I am. I am a runner. Before this year the interests on my CV listed shopping and the cinema! Nowadays 95% of the conversations I have are about my running!

So 2013 has looked like this:

March – Reading Half Marathon: My first real race. I hadn’t trained as much as I should have done. It was driving sleet and rain on the day. Everything hurt from about 5 miles onwards. I was amazed by the event, the spectators, the spirit, the fellow runners, the organisation, the whole thing. I finished in 2:10:34. I’d caught ‘the bug’.

So when my cousin suggested we enter a marathon to raise money for Alzheimer’s Society in memory of our Grandma, it seemed like a do-able challenge! In preparation we entered a local 10km road race in May, which I completed in 56:25, and a series of 3 10km trail runs entitled The Hurt! As we discovered that the marathon we’d signed ourselves up for was an off road marathon, we thought we’d better get into the woods and see what it was all about. The Hurt series were an eye opener; hills, mud, hills, trees, hills and more hills. But we completed a lot, they were great fun and helped to build our confidence.

Marathon training with my cousin was a particular highlight of the year. We’re close in age but drifted apart over the years, so having this challenge together has been fantastic. I’d never have got through it all alone and the friendship that has blossomed from such an experience is irreplaceable.

In July I signed up for ParkRun, which is amazing. It opened my eyes to shorter runs based on pace, but more importantly a world of people just as excited about running as me!

In September it was the Farnham Pilgrim Marathon. The most painful, intense, liberating, fulfilling experience of my life. My training had taken me to 23 miles, but those last 3 and a bit seemed to take an age! I finished in 4:57:50. I couldn’t stand up afterwards!

In October, just 2 weeks after the marathon, I joined a running club. I’ve blogged about it enough but I can honestly say it was the best thing I ever did to progress my running. The speed sessions, the social aspect, the cross country league, everything! And also the month I had places for the London & Berlin marathons confirmed for 2014.

2013 has changed my life. 2014 is going to be even better. I hope you continue to join me in my journey.


3 responses to “2013: The year I ran and ran and ran

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