Judy’s Journey: Crossing the Finish Line

A couple of weeks back a member of our team did something truly incredible! Judy, our Director at Root2 Recruit took part in The London Marathon on Sunday 28th April, running with a charity place for a truly remarkable cause. Here’s Judy’s story on how she got on!:

In the lead up to the big day, so many thoughts were racking my mind. Will I finish? Will the weather conditions be okay? Have I done enough training? Although I felt like I had really pushed myself to meet the physical demands of what awaited, I had a serious case of pre-race nerves and couldn’t wait for it to be over! Living in the Lincolnshire Wolds meant I had plenty of scenic routes to keep my training varied and build my stamina depending on where I felt like going. I’ve always loved being active in the great outdoors, so training was something that fitted easily into my schedule as long as I prioritised it alongside work and my other hobbies. The evening before the big day was spent at The London Marathon Expo and preparing myself in the city for what was to come, particularly fuelling up with as many carbohydrates as I could get my hands on! It wasn’t until I woke up early Sunday morning that I felt exhilaration rush over me. With trainers tied and number pinned, I was ready and raring to go!

As the time crept closer to 10am, the crowds grew in size and cheers echoed louder. Luckily for me, my niece was also taking part and we were both in the red start zone together, so having someone familiar there massively took the edge of my nerves amidst such a huge crowd of people. It took around 40 minutes to get to the start line what with so many runners in front of me, but as I crossed the line I thought, “Here goes!” and off I went bursting with a positive mix of pride, nerves and energy.

Two thirds of the run I can honestly say was incredible. The cheers of strangers and the ongoing support from my family at various points of the course is what kept me going (not forgetting the thought of crossing the finish line even if it was a good few miles away!) When I trained for the London Marathon in 2000, by pre-race day I had only run up to 15 miles due to a knee injury, so knowing this year I’d already secured a respectable 20 miles under my belt felt pretty good and certainly reassuring! Running over Tower Bridge around Mile 12 brought back fond memories of taking part 19 years ago and I felt quite emotional when it really hit me what I was once again taking part in. The people cheering around me and the runners with their own stories powering on through the pain spurred me on and I felt incredible, like I was really doing something good for both myself and the children that would be able to participate in sports with the support of Get Kids Going.

Up to Mile 20 was admittedly a breeze and it wasn’t until I started approaching the last stretch of the journey that my body really started to feel tired. My joints were tight, my energy levels were drooping and I felt a sore runner’s knee coming back to haunt me! But, that didn’t stop me and feelings of motivation weren’t going anywhere just yet. My family had raced across London to support me at Mile 21 and with them they brought the news I had reached my £2,000 target for Get Kids Going – mid-race! It was the push I needed to keep going and I couldn’t help but beam throughout the last few miles knowing the end was so close and I had raised money for such a worthy cause!

I finished The London Marathon in 5 hours 16 minutes and 18 seconds, and crossing that finish line is a feeling I won’t forget, especially the second time around! Although exhausted, a mix of emotions and post-race euphoria rushed through me as I finally made my way over to my family, whose cheers didn’t stop once I’d finished or over the couple of weeks following! The hard-work and dedication in the lead up to The London Marathon was truly worth the feeling of finishing and after finally being able to sit back and enjoy a glass of wine, I felt proud of myself for never giving up and committing myself to such an extensive training schedule. Over the next few days after taking part in The London Marathon, I didn’t feel too sore at all and after a few sessions of yoga to repair any torn muscles and condition my body, I was feeling amazing physically and emotionally, as though I’d really accomplished something close to my heart. Who knows… maybe my marathon days aren’t over just yet!

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