Why don’t you just do it?

At mile 20 I thought I was dead.

At mile 22 I wished I was dead.

At mile 24 I knew I was dead.

At mile 26.2 I realised I had become too tough to kill.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote this blogpost about why I had decided to not run the Dublin Marathon. I had reached week 18 of a 22 week plan and I just felt burnt out. I was full of self doubt, worry, wondering why the hell I wanted to do something that I didn’t feel I was capable of and all these combined made me throw in the towel.

I can’t believe I almost missed out on the chance to participate in one of the most amazing experiences of my life. As I slowly walked into town with my husband at 7am on Monday morning I was too busy lamenting my forgotten running hat than the worry of the task that was ahead of me. As we strolled around soaking up the atmosphere I was mesmerised with the sheer volume of participants who had this mammoth run ahead of them and I was one of them. As 9am approached my stomach was somersaulting and I just wanted to get going. My hair band had snapped and my running watch couldn’t pick up a satellite all of which seemed catastrophes at the time but in comparison to the road ahead they were minor.

I started to run and as I passed the start line I was already struck by the amount of supporters that were already lining the streets. It was 9am on a bank holiday Monday morning and all these people had got out of bed and travelled into the city centre to cheer us on. The volumes in certain areas were unbelievable and made me feel so emotional. A few people stick out in my mind, a colleague who spotted me and shouted my name at the Phoenix Park (thanks Sandra), an elderly couple in Castleknock who caught my eye and told me how well I was doing, a woman in Kimmage who looked directly at me and told me I was amazing, a high five from my friend Chelle’s husband whom I had never met in person, a high five from Des Bishop on the home straight and lastly hearing my husband shout my name and see his beaming face in the crowd was a huge lift! ย The roars of the crowd from Ballsbridge the whole way to the finish line will stay with me forever and honestly helped to carry me over the line. I can’t even begin to describe the feeling, I had just completed a marathon. I had ran, jogged and walked to get there and I felt like I had just reached the top of Everest.

So why you may ask did I change my mind, it was just something my husband had said………’Why don’t you just do it?’ and do you know what I did? I DID IT!

Huge thanks to all who helped us prepare for the big day by minding our children so we could both participate! We have amazing friends and family who without we would not have passed the start line! ย Our lovely neighbours were outside our door with banners, balloons and champagne to throw over us when we returned home and didn’t even look bored as we talked and talked about the events of the day! Forever grateful!

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17 Responses to Why don’t you just do it?

  1. Chelle Burke says:

    I’m so proud of you Paula. You put the doubts aside and just did it. You embraced the unknown, you believed in yourself and you completed the marathon. It was an emotional and physical roller coaster and you rode it with style! Congratulations.. you are a marathoner! xx

  2. John says:

    Well done Paula. Congrats on your first marathon. Have you taught about number 2 yet. This is the next thing. I taught Monday was a great day. I didn’t do it as good time as I wanted but I did finish it and got the medal. Congrats again. John.

    • Paula says:

      Number two John?? I don’t think I will ever run again after it! Lol! Think I going to stick to the more comfortable halfs from here on in! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Edel says:

    I’m so incredibly proud of your accomplishment and in awe of your determination and ‘just do it’ attitude. The best advert for a Nike campaign ever! From now on, you now that you can put your mind to anything if you want to it. Hugely powerful. Well done. Time to put the feet up now lady!

  4. Donna says:

    Well done Paula!!!
    I completely missed this the other day. I read the post when you decided not to run it and felt your disappointment. I’m delighted you changed your mind, such a huge achievement! I can’t run 5 yards :-)

  5. Edel Kavanagh says:

    Paula I think you are amazing! You run a house, run a business and bring up 3 happy children. And a husband! Now a marathon runner such courage. You have inspired me.

    • Paula says:

      Edel I am far from amazing!! I am like a whirlwind most days trying to keep my head above water but I love every second of it!! Thank you so much for the lovely comment. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. Gill Bland says:

    Hi Paula. I am properly impressed and so glad you persevered. It would have been totally legitimate to stick to your earlier reasons for not doing it but as a marathon loving runner I’m really rather excited that you didn’t. Now – come and run London with me?

    • Paula says:

      Gill thank you so much! Beyond thrilled that I actually saw it through and still elated!! London however is another story, am wondering will I ever run again never mind another marathon!! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks so much for the comment!

  7. Kara says:

    Well done Paula! What an achievement :-)

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