So its October.
That means it gets darker, earlier. It gets colder, the wedding anniversary is on the 30th, oh yeah the same day I run my first marathon.
The past number of years have been tough. I’m not your average, normal girl. I am going to find the run up to Dublin exceptionally tough as it was only this time 3 years ago I was neck deep in a court case that would define me in more ways than I can imagine. Even though it was always in my control to pursue such matters, it wasn’t an easy road. Although I came out of that with my head held high and justice served. It has been the foundation to the relentless daily battle with myself to figure out who I really am and rebuilding the Siobhan everyone knows today. So venturing into the unknown which was the gym, extensive weight loss and then running and finding who I think now is the real me, I know that although I will never forget the past, it has made me who I am today and I’m not the worst in the world.
But even as I thought life was settling down, this year has been pure madness, in a good way. I remember standing in the changing rooms at the Gym after Christmas Day Spin class (its for charity so don’t shout) with my sister in law and one of the trainers and saying to the girls, you know what, 2016 is going to be my year. Little did I imagine that the year was going to pan out like this.
I had just, a few days previously, survived my first ever 10k and had no intentions to even do another race until the end of February. Now we all know how things went from there. The next week I was lining up on a very cold January morning in Kilborney for another 10k and that seen me through the following two months of the Born 2 Run, Run Forest Run Winter Series. Mount Stewart on my Birthday, Antrim Gardens and Castlewellan in February and really the race bug continued from there. March gave me pbs at Carlingford and Belfast Craic. April was the 10k Castleward Challenge followed by the Belfast marathon relay in May. June I hit my first big marathon milestone of 13.1 mile at Lisburn with Shore 10k, Sea2Sky, the Womens Mini Marathon and Cookstown in July and August was the month of unplanned madness doing Running Blind 10k, Rathfriland 10k and Dambusters half all within 1 week. I threw in a sneaky 5k race for Cancer Research with a 5k pb on the bank holiday and Causeway Coast Half rounded the latest race list off.
So its been a big year and I do really need a medal hanger.
Looking at all that, I’m extremely proud of my achievements this year as it is, marathon training aside. Ok I admit I have found it exceptionally hard in the past few months doing a 10k and not being able to find my 10k pace which I should essentially be improving on. Especially since I can now run 3 times that distance.
Already though I am beginning to fear the post marathon blues. I have put so much into this and I fear the what will I think about after Dublin. I’m emotional at little things, the fact it was October, I cried. I cried on the way to physio as its the first time I’ve went without a niggle, I well up at the thought of it being over.
I know I have a million and one things I want to improve on in my running. The illusive sub 60 10k, a 2hr 30 half, nailing a sub 2hr 10mile even a sub 30 5k. I’ve my eye on the Half marathon series 2017, I want to spend more time on intervals and putting all the things I’ve learnt from Dermot into practice. I want to see my Vo2 Max go up, I want to lose that final 2 stone. I know losing 8 stone is a huge achievement but imagine how much better for my joints and my running saying goodbye to those final 2 stone would be.
So although my list is extensive, I know I’ve a lot to improve on and there is a life after the marathon. Yet I know I will spend this month an emotional mess as it has been an amazing journey and although its been a rocky road to Dublin, I’ve really enjoyed it. I’ve still the final run to do in Dublin on the 30th as well as so much more to write but I’ve never been more ready for something in my life. I know I can do it, alas in Siobhan time.
So for now, I’m running a marathon this month.
Who’d have thought when I saying I do in marriage that 7 years later we would be in the heart of Dublin Marathon. Crazy.