This week’s Gallery at Sticky Fingers couldn’t have been more perfect. Tara’s theme this week is fitness.
On Sunday, the Royal Parks Half Marathon will finally be underway and I will be running it to raise money for Tommy’s. When I signed on for it I hadn’t even run one step and now six months later I have run thousands and am ready. I have gone through feeling of inadequacy and feeling sure I couldn’t ever do it, to the realisation a few weeks ago that I would be able to run 13 miles and now just pure nerves when I think about the weekend.
I run alone and I run early, which means I share the streets with only a few pigeons, tramps, delivery drivers and the odd market trader setting up their stall. I have music to keep me company, although I increasingly trying to run some miles without music, giving myself a new challenge and allowing the sounds of the city filter through my mind.
However, I have the most reliable running partner, in my beautiful city. It doesn’t complain that I am going too fast or too slow, it doesn’t persuade me not to go, because it doesn’t feel like it today, it doesn’t argue with me about which route to take or shout at me in some attempt to motivate me. It simply carries me along from one familiar view to the next, nudging me through each part of my route.
It takes me down long, straight roads with magnificent houses to distract me as I play “if I won the lottery”, though tree lined pathways in the park, round winding walkways, snaking around our beautiful cathedral and finally along the river. The sun coming up through the willows, that reflect perfectly in the glass like stillness of the water, almost whispering to me that I am nearly home, I am nearly there.
Every run has it’s hard moments, but every run also has those moments that make it worthwhile. A combination of the perfect song, with your legs moving effortlessly under you and the perfect view, come together and you remember why you leave the house and 6:30 and how fantastic it is to be healthy enough to experience this high. Quite often I see views, with just the right light that take my breath away, but I have remember them in my mind as, am too busy running to stop and take a photo, but every now and again I have to stop. Like this moment, 7:30am on a early September Saturday. Just perfect.
When I finish on Sunday I will have many people to thank for their support, but none more so than my wonderful running partner. My fine city.