Sunday, 25 April 2010


I made it, had a brutal day, emotional and physically draining, but I kept at it and made it, 5 hours 54 mins a hell of a lot slower than last year and a hell of a lot slower than expected. Saying that I had a most amazing time, will dissect in a few day's time but for now I bask in the glory of completing a tough but forfilling race.

More details later, right now I need to go to bed as I am teaching tomorrow, lets hope I can walk.

Saturday, 24 April 2010



It was a bit of a palava to get up there, how London will cope with all the extra commuters for 2012 Olympics who knows? The Jubilee line was not going where we needed to go and the stop we wanted to get off at, was shut due to over crowding so it was a bit of a mish mash of back and forth to get out way across London to  the Excel which was in the deep dark East of London.

I don’t think it has really sunk in yet, but the expo helped, being sponsored by Virgin, everything was bright Period red! Realised I had left my registration document at home, but luckily I had my driving licence on me and that was enough to give me what I needed my number, yaaaah. Went and got my timing chipped activated, and had a look around, dragged the other half down with me.

Was not that impressed with the expo, it was okay, not as many great products as you would expect, I read a lot of the blogs American women write and they have a lot better products than we do over here, I mean you can only get compression socks in black or white and we haven’t really jumped on the running skirt bands wagon yet, come on U.K get your finger out, us girlies want some nice gear!


Yes I tried some on, first a pair of red ones, they felt good, but I then tried on another pair called KSO and straight away I felt great in them, I ran around a little, I know no shame, but they weren't cheap so I had to make sure they were as good as they felt. The only way I can describe it was that it felt like my feet were being kissed, and all I could think about was how much my feet would hurt after the marathon on Sunday and how wonderful it would feel to slip my feet into them. I must of drove the sales guy mad with all my questions but as I said times are hard and at £88 I had to be sure. I've read up a lot about them and am very interested in bare foot running, but have only once had the courage to slip my shoes off, too much dog, doo, doo, glass, vomit and general rubbish in my area to bother to try that too often.

My Asics cost £80 plus a pop and to be honest the only thing I buy these days are running clothes and running stuff, I need to buy some everyday wear and shoes, I hope they are worth it, but I know when I slip my feet into them tomorrow that they will be worth every penny spent. I figured they cost me an hour and and 20 minutes worth of teaching I can swallow that.

That was the best part of the expo getting to try the Vibram five fingers on, I may never of bought them otherwise. Picked up some more gels, and jelly beans, got a subscription to another running magazine, and that was it, all that needed to be done was done.

That is the mantra I will try and keep in my head tomorrow anything is possible, it still has not hit me but  I am ready. as ready as I could ever be, yes I wished I could've done more speed work, yes I wish I had done more cross training, yes I wish I had Kenyan Blood, but there is nothing I could do about that now, tomorrow it all goes on the line.I've been eating and hydrating the last few days, no looking back just looking forward 26.2 miles, God willing see you on the other side.

Monday, 19 April 2010


Had an 8 mile run on Saturday, that will be my longest until next Sunday the day of the marathon. I done a 5 mile loop then a 3 mile loop to make up the 8 miles, the other half came out in the car, I was happy for the company, but he had me in fits of laughter, he took his camera out with him and kept popping up behind trees and from behind bridges to snap away, told him to be careful or he might get arrested! Here are some of his efforts.

It was a really nice day, I'd put an extra top and jacket in the car but didn't need them, felt good tried to run to my marathon pace, it felt a nice pace around the 11-11:30 minute a mile pace, how that will feel over 26.2 miles who knows but over 8 it was cool. The sun always helps to make the old bones feel better.

It is really hard to believe that the marathon is only in a few days time, the time has gone too, too quickly, I want to turn back the clock and do it all the training again, and do it better this time.I keep thinking have I done everything I shoud've done, did I leave anything out?

The shot above was taken after I saw the other half running across a section of grass to catch me as I went past, nutter!

The weather held up really well and I feel cautiously confident about next week, the thing is the marathon is such a beast you really don't know what the hell can happen, so the most important this is to get to the end in one piece and enjoy myself.

Almost at the end of the run, these pictures are a clear indication that I still have weight to lose, but I ain't going to beat myself up about it, one step at a time, my food really needs sorting out, but I won't worry about that until the marathon is over, go back on points, up the ante with the exercise, looking forward to hitting the gym, pushing the weights and working hard towards the body I deserve. My exercise mojo is back and that is half of the battle, I have a load of races planned for the future, this is truly just the beginning.

I have a few kerching moments recently, like how important it is to make exercise a big part of my life,that I can lose weight stay slim and be heathy, as long as I keep active and eat well. This is a life long journey, but running and races are making it so much fun. Once this monster of a marathon is over I will be able to continue, just crossing my fingers and hoping all goes well. Will try hard to do all the right things this week, food, hydration, mental preparation and anything else that I can think of that will give me an edge.

Thursday, 15 April 2010


Spent most of Tuesday afternoon making a tutu as part of my costume for the marathon, I wasn't going to bother, but could not find a red, gold, and green one anywhere on the net, so popped down to the local market, bought about 8 yards of tulle some elastic and set about making my tutu. Now I ain't the greatest when it comes at arts and crafts, but I will give things a go. Mum is great at making clothes, curtains and so forth but the talent did not pass on to me.

Tutu making was in fact quite fun, if a little laborious, and in the end I ended up with a big fluffy monster, I think I had too much tulle, but I took some off, cut it down and wallah, I was left with a very fetching number. My tutu does not look like the one above of the lillie white ballerina in the lillie white tutu, niether will I look so elegant. It is as bright if not brighter than the pink one as it is four different colours!

My iron on letters spelling my name came in the post today, just waiting for my leg warmers and cap and sweat bands to arrive and I am all good to go.

Now some people may be wondering why the hell would I want to even attempt to run a marathon in a tutu, well it just makes the whole process more fun, you get lots of attention and it's not often as an adult you get a chance to be silly without being arrested or sectioned!

The tutu I made is very eye catching and a lot puffier (is that even a word?) than the orange one I wore last year at the London marathon or the pink and black one I wore for RACE FOR LIFE, now I know how to make them there will be no stopping me!

No this is not my tutu, weren't you listening my one is red, gold and green!

Done a 4 mile run yesterday, going to head out for a 5 miler in a bit all is on track, saw the physio this week, no major problems, achilles is fine, the body is holding up, just need to keep being careful, and fingers crossed I will get to the start line, tutu and all.

It is amazing to think that the marathon is just around the corner, all hard work done, miles logged, all I hope is that I enjoy myself as much as I did last year, yes I would love to post a faster time, but to be honest that is not the most important thing to me, I want to have a great experience, by pass the dreaded wall, reach the end injury free and mentally unscarred.

 I think that next time I will make a red one, red would be quite a stunning colour to wear. Just need to find a race to wear one in, maybe the GREAT NORTH RUN in September!

Happy running and happy tutu making.

Thursday, 8 April 2010


Snug as a bug before the race, pretty cold out, so I got two tops and two jackets on to keep warm.Starting to wonder weather it is a smart idea to do a 10k run so soon after my 20 miler, oh well too late to pull out now.

There go the gazelles at the front leading the way, there were a lot of serious club runners, so I start at the back as not to get in anyones way. 

Here I am as said at the back you can see that there are really only a hand ful of people  behind me, I was hoping that I would not be the last one back around,the course was around a business park, which also had a golf course, I took part last year as well.

Yep that is me, not too far in, no I am not at the back back there are others around, but I am starting to wonder what the hell I am doing, running in a race when my legs are not recovered from the 20 mile training run only two days ago! My legs are feeling heavy, the wind is strong and the weather bleak, whats new? This is England after all.

See I told you there were other people around, oh there marshalls not other runners! 
Just about to whip off my jacket from around my waist and hand it to the other half, starting to warm up now, chest is fine, it's the thighs which are protesting"Why are you treating us like this, what have we done to deserve such abuse." I tell them to "Shut the hell up, and keep moving." They do as I ask.

There I am still going, I think this is where I am starting to feel the burn, I am wondering wether I can hold on or if this will be the first time I fail to finish a race or if I will have to take a minute drop in my pace, which is hitting an average of 10:01 and go to 11:30 or whatever it will take to allow me to finsih, am I going to embarass myself by being passed by those who I passed a little while back. It's my legs my legs do not like this.

Trying to smile for the camera nothing I can do about the shot from the back, but from the front I will try my best to look decent, new pair of running pants I'm wearing, thought I would treat myself. The path is okay a bit undualating and the sandy ground is not great for tired legs, it was challenging, but the old bones were managing.

Keep on running Kat, see that man with his dog in the pic above,he has no care for us runners, just walked right through, maybe we were the ones who were getting in his way rather than the other way around.

Not far to go now.

I can see the finish.

Yaaaah,all done, thank f**k for that!

This is me and the winner he done it in 33 minutes I took 1 hour 2 minutes 30 seconds a minute or so
faster than last year but not a pb, but I was happy  happy to finish without blowing up and having to walk or crawl my way to the finish line.

Your name was called out as you ran up and everyone cheered which was great considering many of them had been done and dusted for a while before I turned up huffing and puffing like an old steam train, huff,puff, huff, puff, huff, puff. The winner was from St Vincent in the Caribbean and was over visiting his brother,I am sure he won some prize money, I didn't pay mind to that part of the race info, well why would I, there was no way I would be taking it home.

Here I am with my nice shiny medal,I love shiny medals, it's the same one as last year,but I ain't complaining, it was a last minute decision to run the race, and a decision that worked out well, even though it was hard and my body was not impressed with my usual madness I was glad I done it. Start to taper now, just less than two weeks until THE LONDON VIRGIN MARATHON, Saturday if I am recovered I would like to do a Parkrun 5k, just to keep the legs ticking over and work on some speed,
but thats if for now, I think I've earned the right to rest.


Saturday 3rd April twenty mile training run, well this is the run that almost broke me, made me question my sanity, stupidity and everything else in between, above is how I looked at the start,before I started my epic journey, I had not idea what was to come, as you can see the day is pretty overcast and dreary, but lukily I only saw a tiny bit of rain and that was at the end.

The other half was accompanying me on his bike, he carried the food and water, I had my marathon belt on with my gels and fruit pastels, I was glad for the company even though it was only 2 miles longer than the 18 miler I done by myself a few weeks back mentally it just seemed so much longer and today was all about the mental. Above is a moment of light reflief this pony thought I has some food and when he realised I didn't he tried to eat my jacket Lucikly it did not rip! That will teach me to mess with wild beasts.

Spent some time on the River Thames, but it was very very slippery due to the rain which created lots of mud and I kept losing my footing, which did not make great running conditons, but I did see lots of great wild life including two swans on a nest and then later spotted them making love, the other half assured me that was quite a pirlvedged thing to see.

No pictures of when the male swan jumped on the female swans back,but since we were privy to a very private moment that is not necesarily a bad thing!

Left the canal, the mud just got too much in the end, stopped of at Dorney Lake, where I completed last weeks half marathon, it  very quiet, and half of the lake was cut off, so managed about two and a half miles there then headed out back on the road, it was a bit mind numbing running around, luckily the other half was sure he could find another 15 miles for me to run, so I put my faith in him and let him lead the way.

These cows were very inquisitive, started to  move towards us and I was not impressed, luckliy a woman with a horse was going through them at the same time and they dispearesed, I don't think they've seen many black people!

Standing amoung some lovely daffadils, spring is here yaah,but I say roll on summer.

Yes stopping for pictures gives me a break from the grind and takes my mind of the fact I need to run 20 miles! This is a fake smile, this smile is hiding, my pain and despair, not really I'm okay, just questioning my sanity and willing it all to be over.

This pony was much nicer than the first one he didn't try to eat me. All these animals are helping to distract me from the task at hand.
Jubilee reservior a man made flood relief, with a nature reserve very pretty and not as muddy as the canal,a few puddles but nothing to write home about,t hey've even got spots for bird watchers and there were a few out, with binocluars and all,but who am I to criticise.

Just crossed a bridge that the other half used to cross with his mum as a kid with their dog's it's been a real trip down memory lane for him, we passed the house he lived in until he was about 13 as well. All the chat kept me on course and helped to deflect my mind, from the aching feet, and aching groin.

Looks like I'm not doing any runnning, but I promise I am, we've travelled so far feel as if I am on a day trip somewhere. Do I look tired, well I am my body is beginning to rebel and ask me to stop abusing and torturing it, but what it does not know is this fitness regime has just begun, after the marathon time to drop some more pounds, pick up the weights and concentrate onto half marathons for a while.

Here I am at the end calling the ambulance service for help, only joking had to take a picture, we don't have many telephone boxes left, so took a pic for old times sake, they were everywhere when I was a kid, showing my age ah!

So I did finish, even with the detour the other half managed to get me back to the car and I only had to run a little way arund the car park to make it the full mileage, he must have a GPS system implanted in his head. The last part took us through Eton, passed a lovely lake with tons of swans, and ran through cobbled streets, very old English with Windor castle in the back ground.

My groin was playing up, the bottom of my feet hurt, but I made it we were out for over 5 hours, some people could finish a marathon twice over in that time but you know what I don't care, this is about me and no one else, and I am patting myself on the back for my tenacity and determination, if not my speed, still hoping that I may have some Kenyan hidden deep in my DNA, that needs to be activated some how, just need to find out how to activate it.

Once back in the sanctity of the car I boxed down the sandwich and sucked on the tea like it was a life saving serum. Three weeks to the VIRGIN LONDON MARATHON so now it's time to taper yaaaaah.