Earlier in the week I got this magazine in the post.
At the time I was very disappointed and started to work out plans to get a place next year.
But first of all there was the small matter of the Shine Walking Marathon in London this weekend. This is an annual event organised by, and to raise money for, Cancer Research.
So, on Saturday, I drove across to Kent to meetup with Dawn, Kelly and Laura. We set off for Battersea Power Station where we met up with Debbie for the start.
There were people travelling in from all over dressed in their Shine tee shirts. Apparently 10,000 people were involved!
So, what last minute preparations did we do? Whilst some of us got food, Dawn and I shopped! I bought a light up headdress, whistle and long sleeved T-shirt but at the last minute went back and got the flashing laces. Big mistake!!!!!
Eventually the clock ticked round to 9pm, and off we set.
Initially we were making good time but then it started to go wrong 😦
I walk, I walk a lot but those laces were a major problem. They were much shorter than my usual laces and only fitted in a few of the holes on my trainers, so they didn’t support my feet properly. I could feel my feet sliding around inside my trainers and the blisters developing on the soles of my feet.
The first water station was at 5 miles and I changed back into my normal laces but by then the damage was done.
Why did I do it? No idea, it seemed such a good idea at the time. I know not to wear new clothes. I know not to wear new trainers so why on earth didn’t I think of the damage the laces could do? What a ****!
Still only 21.2 miles to go!
So off we all set, and after a very short distance I could tell there was trouble ahead 😦
I walk, I walk a lot …. but it wasn’t long before I realised that my feet were slipping inside my trainers and the sole of my feet were rubbing. It was particularly bad on my left foot.
When we reached the 5 mile water station I changed back into my old laces, but it was too late. The damage had been done.
Why did I do it? Who knows! I know not to wear new clothes on these occasions in case they rub. I know never to wear new trainers for the same reason. But it never occurred to me the effect that laces could have.
Still, on we went.
Laura and Kelly strode off into the distance and, as Dawn and my feet got worse (she finally changed her laces too), Debbie moved ahead of us as well. But would we give up? What do you think?
Now, although I walk a lot I tend to go 10K, Costa, 10K, Costa. But they were shut.
And then we saw this:
Except that they wouldn’t serve us a coffee. Nor would the next one, or the one after that.
Things were looking bad when we came upon the welcome????? sight of a MacDonald’s that was open!
Now normally I would not even consider going into MacDonald’s but:
a) this wasn’t a normal set of circumstances and
b) it would be hard to consider Dawn and I as ‘normal’ especially when we’re together
so in we went.
While we were waiting a man came in and went past us in the queue. He had no chance! “Excuse me, there’s a queue over here” I smiled. He was apologetic and joined the queue behind us. As we stood there he asked what we were doing and we explained that it was a walking marathon for Cancer Research. When we ordered our cappuccinos he insisted on paying for them and offered to buy us some food as well. We declined the food but accepted the coffees thanking him profusely. He then asked if any of the other walkers wanted anything and the woman behind him stridently asked for a tea and coffees for her friends on the other side of the building. This was somewhat embarrassing but it got worse. This extremely generous man held out a fist full of change saying it wasn’t much (it was, there were quite a few pound coins there) and offered it to me for the charity. Dawn and I were thanking him and saying it wasn’t necessary when the same woman shot her hand forward and grabbed the money!!!!!!
Anyway, I would like to thank him, and apologise for her!
After our welcome break we carried on with our walk all around London. We passed all the well-known sights but only took pictures of a few!
Mostly the event was very well organised but I have to make one complaint. Half an hour is too long to queue for a toilet! There really need to be more available!
The night wore on, the sky got lighter and our feet hurt more and more. By the end we were in serious trouble and were both dreading putting our feet on the ground. Every time we saw the bobbly bits you have to walk over at crossings we groaned anticipating the pain. When we had to step up and down kerbs we stood trying to work out which part of our feet to land on they hurt so much.
But we are not quitters and, eventually we got back to the start having walked 27 miles.
And we got our medals.
This was it:
To say we were disappointed would be a bit of an understatement. This is not a medal, it’s more like an identity card on a lanyard!
But we were finally reunited with the others who’d kindly waited for us (Kelly and Laura had finished ages earlier!)
We’d raised a lot of money for charity (massive thanks to all my sponsors) and had quite a few laughs along the way.
Now the others are runners and they felt that walking a marathon’s a lot harder than running one but I think they just need a bit more practice so having had a look about I came across this:
Well it’s got to be worth thinking about!