Well, the Marathon was last Sunday. It was an amzing event, 2300 people at various stages of running ability.
From the beginning, I was having trouble, I couldn't get into a good pace, I was cold, hot, tired, running too fast, too slow and overwhelmed by the crowds. I got to 31kms, and the course was closed. I was too slow, and they needed to reopen the roads of Kobe to cars.
I was quickly relieved of my runner's chip, handed a cheap as chips towel and hearded on to what I christened the "loser bus" to the finish to collect my luggage.
A few tears later, and I had a good think.
To say I'm disappointed is an understatement. All that training, planning, not to mention the compression tights (which got easier to get in and out of after the first wash), and nothing to show for it. Except for a great weekend, the chance to participate in a big marathon event (I've only ever run in Shikoku before, and we are the small island, after all), and a list of things to do differently next time.
I've realised I need to watch my pace. If I'd have been keeping an eye of the time, I would probably have been able to get through 31kms before they closed it (I missed it by literally a minute and a half).
I've realised I need to be a bit stronger and maybe take my time training up. At least one more half marathon would be a good plan.
I've realised I need to work on my diet, not because I'm a huge fat blimp (although, I would be if I ever stopped running), but because nutrition helps you to be stronger, which is good when you decide to run for a really long time.
I've also realised that I need to ignore the crowds who come out to cheer, even though it's lovely that they did. I felt the need to high five every kid that asked (even though the only toilets on the route were portaloos, with nowhere to wash your hands, which made me not really want to high five people for obvious reasons...), and to say thank you to the old dears that told me to "fighto". Stopping for all of that plays havoc with your pace, as it turns out.
But, never fear. I've not given up. I've decided I'm going to run a marathon, and I'm very much going to. Just not this year. Maybe next year. Maybe not. But one day. And it will be even more amazing because of all the times I haven't managed it.
Oh, one good thing, no robot walking. All the stretching did the trick and I was only a bit stiff the next day (unless I sat down for any length of time, in which case I needed help to get up).