So, let’s get this straight. You might think wow what kind of crazy person does a challenge like running 2 marathons in 3 days. Well… one that is absolutely terrible at maths. I love a challenge as you will start to see and so I thought it would be a great idea to sign up to the NHS Great Run Challenge.
It was to run 280km in 28 days which sounded tough enough and safe to say it was. The bad maths part… let’s just say I miscalculated a few of the days and thought I had an extra week. The best part was, I didn’t actually realise until a few runners (also doing the challenge) started organising where we were all meeting up that upcoming Sunday to finish it together. Oops – at least my friends found the funny side.
So, the outcome of this? I can tell you now I wasn’t going to be the one person not showing up. That was for sure. In true Carla style, I went all out and I may have gone on to rack up a whopping 202km in that penultimate week of the challenge. Ouch, that was a new one. The week looked a bit like this:
- Monday: 8km (a small amount as it was AFTER I realised the error made)
- Tuesday: 42.2km (1st Marathon)
- Wednesday: 10.5km
- Thursday: 42.2km (2nd Marathon)
- Friday: 30km (including 1st Half Marathon)
- Saturday: NEEDED REST… jokes, for some reason I actually did a 41km bike ride
- Sunday: 28.6km (including a 2nd Half Marathon)
Although a tad hilarious that this was all a bit of an accident, it’s safe to say I am happy I did. It was the most running I have done in a week by a mile (pardon the pun). However insane this was, there was a lot I learnt after doing this which I include in my everyday routine now.
Rest and recovery become insanely important through the week. Epsom baths, Thera gun massages and lengthy stretches became my norm. This, believe it or not, actually stopped my legs aching across the entire week (no lie)! The following Monday however, was a different story. Sitting down on the loo is rather a struggle when you can’t bend your knees. However, note to self, don’t try it with straight legs as it ends in your partner running in to try and save you from failing in your own loo. Embarrassing or what!?
I could stay motivated to put one foot in front of the other by simply using varying methods of distractions. Throughout the marathons, I listened to my favourite podcasts, called and chatting with loved ones, blared crazy music, embraced silence and always looked around to apricate my surroundings. Mix it up, don’t rush the pace and just enjoy the process. I loved that week so much because I did something that, hand on heart, I didn’t think I could do. Prove yourself wrong. Push boundaries. They are there to be tested.