7am and my parents arrived to take me to the beautiful stratford (it truly is!!! and i'm fully intending a return visit under different circumstances) i'd scoffed my porridge, and finaly located my chip and number - which i'd put "somewhere safe" - you know how it is! Plus i was in a flap cos i couldnt find my lucky stopwatch then i heard it chime the hour and found it tangled in crumbs in the armpit of my handbag.
I'll fast forward the mundane rigmoral of sat nav arguments and the like...In the starting pens, like cattle, i realised i needed a wee again, but no time with 10 mins to go squished in between two burley 6ft+ gentlemen! So hoped i'd just sweat it out (so to speak!)
Started promptly, wasn't as congested as i expected and got off to a good start, felt amazing, bopping along like a little bunny, comfy and not feeling as if i'd gone too quick... the first mile looped back through the start so your loved ones could see you again and wave proudly!! I came through a mile at under 7 mins but comfy.... carried on this pace for next four miles and found myself pacing along with a lady built like a whippet, so i stuck with her, then realised she was doing the half so let her whippet away.... came through 4 miles still 7 min mile pacing to the sound of Michael Jackson's "Beat It" in my lugholes - apt.
About 7 miles in i was overtaken by another Pink bib lady (marathon) told her "well done" (secretly "grrrrr!" Got to 8 miles in 58 mins, so within the hour as planned - all good and still feel bouncy and strong Not sure what happened between 8 and 11 - think i was just in the zone and skipping along happily in the sun munching raisins every now and then.... 11 through 12.5 was a nice trail track thing - stank a bit of sh1t but looked pretty. then at the end of that the half went off to their finish and the full beared off.
A lady shouted that i was 3rd lady, so this gave me a big boost, and went through 13 in about 1:37 to the sound of Maximo Park "velocity" and then i recall Nirvana "smells like teen spirit" all egging me along........ had really wanted to get to 16 in 2 hours and was only 11 seconds outside of that still hold 3rd lady...but then someone over took me... again "well done" (grrrr!)
Dunno what the hell happened, from here it went from great guns to horror nightmare...... everything sccrewed up... quads tightened, knee flared up, just had nothing.... guzzling nasty sugary lucozade, sweets, unfortunatly didnt ccarry more painkillers.....which had wore off (note to self - get "PROPER" codeine not shabby sulpadeine)16 - 19 was a draggy hilly stretch - not hugely steep (i'd not even noticed it the first lap) and took an age!! (9 min miles) bleugh!
I turned into a potty mouth tourettes monster! So glad my mother couldn't hear me, she'd have the bleach out!! The more i swore at myself and got dissapoointed with myself, the more my knee swore back - i ignored it the best i could, concentrating on tunes in my ears....I had to pulll right back and let more ladies overtake me... again being outwardly sporting.
I got to 22 still needing a wee, but wasnt going to stop as i didnt think i'd get out of my squat positino and the bushes were quite open, so ploughed on. I got to 23 miles at about 3:05 feeling really annoyed at myself as i'd really secretly been hoping for a sub 3:30 and had looked so hopeful in the first 16 and felt like someone had given me a bad personality transplant, so i decided one last "c" word t omyself, give myself a slap, and a good talking to, stop being so damn hard on myself, and enjoy the last 3 miles as much as the first half....
I think perhaps i was delerious form heat, sugary nasty drink, annoyance but i turned back into annoying bouncy AnnaB, and everyone who I passed that was cheering, ran past Hi 5ing and making "Woooooooo!" noises, some young girls were stood outside their house with a hose pipe asking if people wanted spraying - damn right i did, did a little jig about in the hose pipe and carried on... "whooping" as i went... trying to boost people along who were dragging their heels, one old guy said "i need some crowds to cheer me along""WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Wwill that do?""ummm.. no thanks though"the last half mile kind of snaked into a fielded area where theere were lots of people sat in the sun cheering and the like, i spotted my dad with his vid camera, and "woo!" waved and ran past towards the finish, where they were cchecking numbers and calling that and names out of PA system as we crossed the line, to which i gave a mexican wave style wave and yep - you guessed it a little "woo" Finally crossed the line in 3hr 38 i was 16th lady in the end... i so wanted that 3rd!! to sum up - had an amazing first 2 hours a really shabby hour and an absoutely brilliant last half hour!!!
I'm so glad i went from beating myself up to a silly sausage as it really transformed my day as i know i would be sulking now at a dissappointing result. Note to self: it's a marathon not a sprint!! (need to learn to pace myself) xxx