Today I ran from the town I went to university in to the town we shopped in as teenagers and back again.
This run happened to be Surrey half Marathon which I booked as soon as it was announced as I loved the opportunity to run on closed roads I’d only ever driven, around towns I know well.
During the run I had a few regrets come to mind. I’ve put them in the box marked ‘no regrets’ now but thought I’d share them with you for posterity and in case you feel the same.
I regret never running these roads before. I ran once at university, I suspect in an attempt to loose a bit of weight but I honestly can’t remember. It was a glorious day, I put my iPod in (wore all the wrong clothes) and set off. I think I lasted about 10 minutes. I don’t remember it being hard or hating it. I remember the beautiful weather that day and now I regret not getting out again.
I regret the forged notes, excuses and attitude I showed to secondary school PE. I was always jealous of the pretty, sporty, semi popular girl in the cross country team and now I wonder if we could have been friends. I wish I had been given a chance to be inspired in sport and not humiliated by my lack of hand eye coordination on the rounders pitch. I also wish I had persevered and not let that knock me down.
Today I did not regret:
- Getting out of bed at 7 on a Sunday
- Wearing clothes and gadgets I wouldn’t have dreamed I’d own
- Trying my hardest
- Encouraging others and befriending random runners on the course
- Cheering all the front runners
- Grinning and saluting at the photographers
- Saying (panting or simply nodding) thanks to the Marshals
- Running 13.1 miles with a smile, so much so, my face hurt
- The celebratory prosecco I pre ordered for afterwards
But there was one more thing..
I regret that new/ lapsed runners think that because I am running a marathon I am not interested in running with them. I am not quick, I like chatting and more than anything I would love to support you. Give me a chance and let me show you how much I love running (and parkrun) don’t let me regret that! I relish the chance to run with any of my friends and family no matter the speed, distance, terrain, if we have to walk/run, no matter. It’s my new passion and if you are interested give me a shout. Think of it like my other passion, you’d let me bake for you wouldn’t you? So let’s go for a run!
This is not a pity party, as I said to start with, I’ve put my regrets in a box and rationalised them to myself. These were just some thoughts that came to me whilst running.
The inaugural Surrey Half Marathon was practically perfect in every way! Too good really to be talking about regrets.
I arrived, parked easily, didn’t have to queue for portaloos. Didn’t feel penned in, in the timing pens. The start was in waves easing congestion. There was somewhere for David to get a coffee and a bacon sarnie, the sun was shining and the route was super fun. I loved the opportunity to cheer the elites at the front and even managed to get a smile from the 4/5th placer from my over enthusiastic cheering. Despite the unseasonable weather there was plenty of water everywhere. The bands, cheerleaders and support on route which was unexpected all kept me going. Especially my personal cheering squad Liz, Clare, Dave and my Mum and Dad! The finish on a track was super fun (but I was not such a fan of the sandy path leading up to it). The hills didn’t bother me too much, I was too busy chatting, cheering and waving to spectators.
I’d definitely run it again, looking forward to next year!
Have you always been sporty or do you wish you’d started sooner?