The Big Marathon Plan
Our landlord’s training for the marathon continues…
“Since the last update, I was still making no headway with actual training AND had got really chubby over the holidays so I decided to dig out my “running” (ho ho) shoes from under the bed and enter the Great North Run (I don’t know if you have ever thought of doing a Great Run, but it is an amazing experience and even for a reluctant runner like me it is brilliant fun). To be there on the day, crossing the iconic Tyne Bridge with crowds of well-wishers waving, calling encouragement and sometimes even offering Jelly Babies is an experience I would recommend even to the most determined couch potato.
I had my usual difficulty of not recognising any of the stars of the soaps but everyone I met was lovely and surprisingly willing to pose for a photo….
There’s Charlie Walduck (Britain’s Biggest Loser, who lost 30 stone) with his fabulous friend Mark who keeps him motivated (and can apparently be seen on YouTube in the latest Hovis ad as “the man who falls into the mud”).
There’s Calum Best, model and son of famous footballer George
GB runner Mo Farah who fired the gun to start the Run (& on Saturday won the 2 mile race in the Great City Games in a time of 08.37.72)
and Kate Fox the amazing Great North run Resident Poet who was happy to pose for a silly photo.
Alan Hinkes was the first Briton to climb the world’s 14 peaks over 8000m and Mark Allison ran across America in aid of The Children’s Foundation and St Benedict’s Hospice.
An actor I did recognise was Richard Harrington who played Gabriel Cochrane, the handsome but moody blacksmith in Lark Rise to Candleford.
Nell McAndrew, aka Batwoman, is a regular at the GNR and endlessly patient with people like me wanting a photo with her and the chap from the Red Arrows kindly let me grab him as he was trying to eat his lunch!
It was a very poignant day for the Red Arrows as the widow of one of the team was running in her husband’s memory. I felt really choked as I rounded the corner at the 12 mile point just in time to see the Red Arrows wonderful display swooping and curling above the crashing waves and dramatic cliffs of the South Shields coastline, as if they were escorting me home to the finishing line.
I also met Geoffrey Beattie, TV psychologist whom I met very glamorously at the VIP Portaloos before the race. His son (who did a fabulous 1hr 12mins) took the photo. After the race he said he would always remember my advice: picturing the whole of the second half of the race as one long climb apparently really helped! Perhaps a whole new career in motivational psychology beckons..?
As for the race itself – all I can say is 26.2 miles seems a LONG WAY more than 13.1! Luckily my daughter Katie is doing the marathon with me
This photo is from the Birmingham & Black Country Half Marathon we did way back in June together. She reckoned having one’s name on the T-Shirt could only be A Good Thing and it was certainly a huge boost this weekend to have random voices in the crowd shout “Come on Patricia – you’re doing well!”. Aren’t people nice?
Oh – and TheMan With The Fridge ran the whole way with a real, actual fridge on his back. Worst thing was he kept overtaking me!
So – all that remains now is to focus and NOT PANIC AT ALL. I’ve joined a gym at last because I really don’t want to get stranded in the middle of the Chester suburbs unable to move my legs or lift a finger to phone for help!
Only 2 weeks to go now so I’ve changed my webpage quite a bit: there’s less boring text and more desperate begging! www.justgiving.com/patricialee2011”