My first half marathon – The day

My first half marathon – the day

It all started end of July 2011 when I committed in accept Maz Morrison invitation to free personal training for women of any age running their first half marathon with

The second part of this story is around Christmas time when we started to increase from 8.5 miles onwards .

The first part at covers when I just started.

At the winter sales time, Stephen and I returned to Rohan shop in Guilford. We were warmly greeting from Hannah who had been so helpful last time and the manager, Rachel – we even gave each other hugs. We talked enthusiastically about Rohan clothing  their and our adventures. I bought ‘Super fine Merino 150 leggings’ that felt heavenly next to the skin. I used them to add warmth under my ‘Striders trousers’ and also with Rohan everyday socks under skirt with boots throughout the winter. I also purchased ‘Women ultra Silver briefs’. Stephen bought men’s ‘Ultra Silver Trunks’ as his contribution to our ‘Sales’ successes.

In our training from January, we started to increase mileage each week 9.7 then 10.7 and finally two Sundays before the event day, Stephen and I completed the whole route 13.1 miles. So, although we were slow over 3 hours, which unfortunately meant your finished timing would not be officially registered (they took up the electronic start/finish mat) , however they allowed us to finish the full route instead of being scooped up by the ‘Sweeper’ minibus.

On the day of Wokingham half marathon we were dressed in Rohan from basic layers to the top layers including gloves. The weather was sunny, dry with a gentle wind which was the best weather we had over the previous two weeks.

It was an unusual and memorable experience being surrounding with 2500 other runners of various levels of fitness all with mutual aim to complete the half marathon and for most lots of money for their favorite cause.

We met our friends Philip and Elizabeth from our local choral academy. Philip has been running half marathons for some time and his wife Elizabeth took photos of us running towards the start line.

We also had a pleasant surprise that our friend Gwynneth Hewetson – Chair of Cultural Partnership – More Arts Charity for whom we collected sponsorship was there with her husband Tony to cheer us on at the starting line.

Usually, first part of the route is easier for both of us, however Stephen was struggling as the start was somewhat faster than usual for him. Our primary aim was to complete the route to raise the funds and secondary was to achieve our personal best times. As soon as we passed the water station, Stephen got faster and faster so he finished at the end in his best time 3h 3minutes and I finished in my personal time 3h 22minutes. The great news is that we realized how each week timing got better even though our pace and combination of run, jog, walk varied.

We loved the whole experience so much that we booked ourselves on our second half marathon in Bracknell on 29th April. We are preparing to make it within the official registered time at the end which is just under 3 hours. We certainly will do it faster than our first one.

Stephen and I collected £155 donations and that will be matched by website charity registered so in total Wokingham Cultural Partnership – More Arts charity will receive £310 against our original target of £300.

Main reasons WHY I did half marathon are to increase my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual stamina, strength and fitness. I was ready to make it continuous, long term fitness regime, not one-off project more new life style that I prefer. I enjoyed being under the sky in all weathers and being surrounded by natural elements. I like talking kindly to my body, doing my meridian, energy exercises in the morning. It is the practice of breathing, positive talk, enjoying it by less being serious and yet healthily stretching myself.

As a facilitator for passionate, purposeful, enjoyable living through my business and welcoming the Change (as Stop Smoking Advisor) first thing is answering questions: Three specific reasons WHY do you prefer specific CHANGE i.e. Stop Smoking or training to run/jog/walk my 1st half marathon. Three specific reasons – What do I imagine will be benefits in being a non smoker, being a trainee for completing half marathon.

Once you clearly know your reasons, then your efforts and challenges become meaningful, fulfilling and you know what you choose to have as new expereinces in your life. Every part of run, shorter distances between trees/signs that I set and completed as well as whole short/long routes I have done, gave me a sense of achievement and feeling good.

Now we are looking forward to finding which Rohan clothes we will choose to wear next to support our training and competing in all weathers and conditions. On March 7th there will be Spring promotion in all Rohan shops.

We are looking forward to our next trip to Rohan in Guilford.

Marina Duskov

Rohan Heritage

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