5 Days 12 Hours and 10 Mins (at the time of writing!)Mark Curtis
Tuesday, 17 April, 2012
I’m a bit late with this, so I’ll get straight into it. To everyone who is running a marathon in the next few weeks, I wish you the very best of luck. To the guys of Project 26.2, I wish you all the very best with your challenge ahead. I hope that the experience is an amazing one for each of you and that you will take this last few months grind into ‘every step you take.’ Um… there’s a song there. Sadly I won’t be at all of the races to watch you all come across the line. But I will be thinking of you! It’s Monday evening and we already know that Keith, Freya and Cathy are home. Well done you guys! Very well done! One of my oldest friends Simon King ran Brighton on Sunday and he too has crossed the finish line in good time. ‘Si, It feels good doesn’t it mate?’ Our very own Rhalou (the online editor of Men’s Running) smashed her personal best at the weekend as well. It’s all kicking off! Next up will be Ray, the two lovely ladies Lorraine and Laraine as well as little me, as we take on London this Sunday. The early weather report that I’ve looked at seems to be in our favour. They predict light showers so it’s game on. My plan will remain as it stands with no need to alter it due to a baffling English heat wave. (I touch wood at this point.) Training this week is light and full of stretches and little 30-minute runs. A few core sessions and some light swimming. We’ve been told to eat well and that sleep is a key factor during the week. As the weekend gets closer I know I’ll struggle on that score. So I’ve put things in place to keep busy. I’m picking up a bike on Saturday. I think Keith and his cycling antics have begun to rub off on me. I won’t be using it before Sunday, although it’s nice to have that as a distraction. I will finish work in Peterborough on Friday eve and drive to Ipswich for a job on Saturday. Then after going to see my new bike, my niece and my sister and brother in law I will travel to London on Saturday evening to stay in my old flat with friends. Work has been interesting this week. I took part in a ‘Speed Awareness’ course today. Yep, I’m afraid I got caught speeding on the A14. Only five miles an hour over the limit, but as today has proven that is all it would take for a minor accident to become a major one. “Mark, get back here!!” Nick’s immortal words to me during the Brighton Half as he was attempting to keep me from putting the burners on too early. As I was sat during a break in the course today, I could hear those words as if Nick himself was sat on my shoulder. I chuckled to myself and inadvertently spat coffee on the table in front of me. The lady next to me just glared. “Oh no!” I exclaimed. “It’s not the course I’m finding funny. It’s Nick you see, he is my trainer and he is sitting on my shoulder, I mean he’s not, but his voice is, erm… What I mean is…” The lady turned away. If only I’d had a copy of Men’s Running Magazine with me! In fairness to the lady we later had a chat about the course and how scary it was. I learnt so much and am pleased to have been on it. I will change my attitude and some of my habits as a driver as I think many of us should. This weekend I will stick to the plan and not get coaxed into an early sprint by other marathon runners. Nick will be on my shoulder. Like a parrot, like a big loud parrot telling me what to do. I’ve found my mantra a big squawking bird with Nick’s head. I’ve done everything I can do. Nothing left except to turn to the reasons why it all came about and then enjoy each and every step. Thank you to everyone who has helped to get me this far. I will try and make you all proud! See you at the finish!