If ever there was a case of the 'Little Engine That Could'...I would have to say it was me yesterday. The big day was upon me. I was setting off to participate in the British 10K London Run. As I took the train into London, butterflies were flying wild in my stomach and in my head. "Do I approach the day with trepidation or determination?" Those were a few of my thoughts as I stepped off the train at Waterloo station. I don't think I can print the others. :)
That said, I was doing this for a very good cause and my steps then took on a more even and determined pace as I set off to meet the rest of my Team at St. James Park. They were all smiles, as they always are, one of the things I love about Aussies. I agreed to participate in this event with the Australian Women of London Club of which I am happy to be a member. We were raising funds for CCLEF, more on that here.
With our race cards on, toilets runs behind us and water bottles in place we set off to the start line.
I intended to power walk this event, as my friends well know, I am not a runner. Then a funny thing happened on Piccadilly Street....the crowds were massive, the excitement in the air was contagious and as we passed the start line it was hard not to break into a jog. The support along the sidelines was to exciting to resist. I was good to go...at least part of the way.
We all separated, the runners, the joggers, the walkers and because I had set my own pace I found myself alone (as alone as you can be in a crowd of 10,000) but that in itself was the most interesting part of the event for me. Back and forth, walking, jogging, running, walking. I realised I could do it.
When I started to wane at the 6K mark I took off to the side, plugged in my iPod and set off to the music of Adele...the rest was easy. You can check out her music here.
I may have looked like a silly middle age woman in my bright yellow T-shirt, mini-back pack, fanny pack (for my iPod) and sporting a Heidi hairdo with my bandana pushed back to keep my hair off my face whilst holding my iPhone above my head taking pictures along the way but I was doing my thing and having fun.
In the midst of it all, I started thinking of my blog and posts and photos and friends and somehow the time and distance just passed. I thought of how it feels when you want to throw the towel in, you have had enough and can't be bothered and one phrase came to mind 'A Woman of Substance'. I have no idea where it came from, but I kept saying it over and over again... "I am a woman of substance and I will not give up." Can I just say, that if you ever feel that way yourself, hold your head up high and use it as your 'mantra'. Put yourself there and don't let go. For we all are women of substance..we have heart and gist.
I was never so happy to see the 9K sign..past Big Ben, Parliament House, Westminster Abbey and we were in the home stretch. I picked up the pace and ran past the finish line. Heidi was Happy!
So here I sit, the morning after, at my window, looking out at my garden, typing on my iPad. Achy, sore and thinking of the next run/walk/jog. I think I can, I think I can, I know I can....for I am a woman of substance, just like you!
A special thanks goes out to all the friends who supported me and this great cause. We have nearly hit our target number. If you would like to help talented young girls living in impoverished conditions get a secondary school education...you can help us here. They are young girls destined to be women of substance one day. :)
I won't forget....
Our bright yellow T-shirt.
The band playing.
Waiting to START on Piccadilly Street
The view in front of me...
The view behind me.....
The spirit in raising money for charity.
I just loved these two!
A few shots whilst running and holding
my iPhone over head to take a photo...
The view from the FINISH line...
Lord Nelson welcoming us.
My last parting shot leaving St. James Park
before catching the train home.
Today I rest!
Best wishes for a lovely day to you all!!