About this time last year, I was freaking out thinking of D-day that I would be at the starting line for the 42.195 marathon. "Yikes" was a favourite word for many months LOL.
And I know there are many freaking out souls out there today, waiting for this memorable yet frightening Sunday, the 26th of June where you and thousand others will be at the starting line, with your hearts in your throat and your legs wishing they were elsewhere.
But you know what? If you had trained for this moment, its normal for you to still be scared, afraid, terrified, but deep inside you, you know that you are ready for this. Come what may, your goal would be to cross the finishing line! And I kid you not, you will.
But please, dont repeat my mistake. I ran despite an already nagging injury, but I had put my heart and sweat and soul in this, nothing was going to stop me. I wish I had been wiser. I wish someone had sat me down and told me, do not do this, there is always the next event. Always. I finished. I ran, jogged, walked, and hobbled to the finishing line and today, instead of freaking out of doing another full marathon, I have to miss my anniversary run. I kept running here and there and my injury did not heal properly and now, I am paying dearly for it. My last long run was last September and the furthest I have ran this year is 10km.
So please, be smart. If you are passionate about running like I do, and if you are already nursing an injury, I am sitting you down and tell you. DO NOT DO THIS. There is always the next event. ALWAYS. And you know yourself better than anyone else. If with a clarity you know that you are not ready even if you had somewhat trained for this, no matter what your friends tell you, no matter how much THEY have faith that you can do this, listen to YOUR heart and YOUR body. DO NOT DO THIS. There is always the next event. ALWAYS. Remember that.
But if you are ready, then I wish you all the best. And come what may, I will be parked at KM35/36 waiting for you to reach me. Waiting to urge you on the last few kilometers that would propel you into a marathoner. And I will be there, and will try to help each and everyone of you that drop by in any way that I can. Some other friends will be there too.
Promise me one thing. If at all, during any part of the run, you incur injury , you have severe cramps, you have any kind of trouble, do not go on. Not finishing is not defeat. Not finishing is knowing that you had given it your best but today is not the day. You will go home proud and do it again another time. Not finishing in that situation would be the smartest move in your running life. No one will ever look down on you because you did not finish. Even the best runners in the world have had their DNF days.
Just remember one thing. Just by being there at the starting line on that morning, you are already a hero in my eyes and in all other runners. The hardest and biggest hurdle in running the full marathon is to be present at the starting line. What happens after that is merely a bonus.
Good luck to all FMVs, especially for those running their maiden 42.195. Run well, run safe and most of all, enjoy this day. And I will be waiting for you. If you are tired and want to give up but you are not injured or will not be compromised in any way .. make it a goal to reach me. Once you see me, you know you are already almost a marathoner and we will give you the last push !