It’s Brighton Marathon Eve, so we felt it was fitting to share Natalie’s blog…a supporter’s story.
Two years ago this weekend, I went down to Brighton for one of my best friends running the Marathon and it was a lovely weekend that we shared together, even though most of the time was spent apart!
I was there for her in a supporting role and I enjoyed every minute of it. The weather was beautiful and the sun cream was applied, but it was a bit too warm for running really and I didn’t envy anyone running in the heat.
The atmosphere was electric and though I didn’t get to see much of the actual race itself, I was there to soak up the remarkable achievements of everyone taking part and for the reasons why they were running. Everyone’s story was different and very personal to them.
I didn’t see my friend start as that was out of the town and I missed her on a corner that I was sure I was going to catch sight of her about 5k in, but I was tracking her on the App and we spoke on the phone.
I was there to take her mind off things when her foot started hurting around miles 15-16. I also encouraged her to keep going when things got tough and I hoped her seeking medical attention would help.
I managed to get a good spot on the finishing straight and I saw her at the finish and despite her pain and discomfort she looked strong on her approach to the finish line. I was so proud of her and her journey and I was completely inspired by her achievements of getting to that finish line. However, I was still completely ruling out the fact that I would ever be able to complete such a distance!
I wasn’t able to get to celebrate or congratulate my friend straight away as the charity village was extremely busy and not easy to get to and so I decided to wait on the upper seafront whilst my friend had her well deserved sports massage and complimentary sandwiches in a marquee below.
When we eventually met up, I couldn’t put into words how proud I was of her and I did get quite emotional. I felt both her pain and her relief of finishing. I was just so pleased to be there in person for her and to congratulate her.
I also got very excited about posting up her picture with her medal on to social media and then it was time to refuel and listen to her reflect on her run.
I just wanted to share this experience from the point of someone who was completely inspired by her friend’s running adventures. I felt honoured to be party to her marathon achievement and she did make me wonder if I could also take on that distance, as I sat there with only a few half marathons under my belt!
I think also it is worth saying, a seed was sown in my mind to whether I could ever run that far another year?
Never say never and yes #SheCan 💜
I would like to dedicate this blog to the wonderful ladies that I know are taking on Brighton this Sunday. I will be thinking of you and tracking you all. Go and have a great run x