Yesterday was the probably the proudest day of my entire life! In the past few years I have turned my life around and started working hard to become the person I am meant to be. I have set goals and reached most of them! I have had lots of failures but always tried again. Yesterday I ran a marathon. I actually can’t even comprehend it yet but I wanted to write this all down while it’s still fresh in my head! For anyone that hasn’t been following me I will give a quick catch up to how I got here from where I began!
5 years ago I was a smoker, binge drinker and weighed around 230lbs. I had absolutely zero fitness levels and was miserable. I started with a trainer to try lose some weight for my wedding but fell in love with looking after myself! I lost 80lbs in a year and have kept it off (except for a few pounds here and there) for over 4 years now! I started running a few months after I started losing weight and did my first 10k within a year but I never thought I’d get much further than that! At the end of 2015 I decided I wanted to run a marathon so signed up for the Belfast one in May of 2016. I trained for it but had to give up 3 weeks out due to an injury. Afterwards I wasn’t sure whether or not to try again, I was so afraid of getting injured and having to give up AGAIN after putting so much work in! I did get struck with plantar fasciitis 3 weeks out (what is with the 3 week thing like? ) but decided I would go on. I spent my taper resting a lot, icing my foot and trying everything I could that would help. There was still a few niggles but in the last week it did improve a good bit.
The morning of the marathon I was petrified! I knew that I was being silly and that I had done the work but I just couldn’t help it! My stomach was churning, I could barely eat breakfast and I felt so worried. It never entered my mind that I wouldn’t finish the marathon because I know I am a tough cookie but I was afraid of running the last few miles in pain. My longest run in training, a 21 miler had been a really tough one because of my foot and this was an extra 5 miles!
Ryan made me swear to take it easy at the start and I knew that it would be tough to hold myself back but for the first 3 miles I ran at a really slow and steady pace… it paid off for me in the end because I managed to run for the entire duration of the marathon except for one twenty second period where I slowed to a walk! There were a lot of people taking walk breaks right even at the start but I wanted to try keep moving at a steady pace for as long as I could! I went in to the course sort of blind because I don’t know Derry at all and had no idea what the route would be like. . People had told me it was hilly and that there was a big hill at mile 25 but I honestly thought the course was amazing.. the few miles where I really struggled was all flat so it was more the distance rather than the course that made it tough.. I ran up every single hill and I am so proud of that!
The first few miles were a breeze! I picked up my pace a little bit from the start but still didn’t push myself too much, I was trying to conserve as much energy as I could! There was so much support from everyone around every corner, little kids holding out sweets and bottles of water, really picked up my spirits a few times!
I knew I wouldn’t make it around the whole course without stopping for a pee, I just don’t have that sort of bladder; so at mile 10 I made a pit stop, because I didn’t want to have to wait until I REALLY had to go!
I made it to the halfway marker and still was feeling pretty good! I had started to pass out a few people just by holding my steady pace and my foot was holding up well.. I could feel a slight pain in it but I was sort of detached from it! Probably all the adrenaline lol…
Around the 16 mile mark I told myself I only had 10 miles to go and that I could do it! I was starting to slow down a little at this pace but I was still doing alright. A few more hills and then we were on a flat again heading for the Peace Bridge..
I knew that wasthe 20 mile mark so I told myself it was only 6 miles to go, roughly around an hour or so of running left! The Peace Bridge was beautiful and lifted me up for a bit but after mile 21 I started to struggle. My hips were hurting, my calves were seizing up and the end seemed so far away! Mile 22 marker came along and I tried to tell myself it was only another 4 miles but I was really starting to slow. I never hit the wall which I couldn’t believe but it did get very tough for me then…
Coming up on mile 23 I looked up and saw my Auntie Nonie on the side of the road cheering for me. I couldn’t believe it as I had no idea she was coming! She came alongside me and ran with me until mile 25, and only for her I would have been so miserable. She picked up my spirits and distracted me just when I needed it! I’ve never been so thankful for something in my life. .
Mile 25 meant Fahan hill, the one everyone had warned me about but Ryan was there waiting for me and he ran up it with me. . He told me to keep looking at the ground and to just lift the legs until I made it. It really was nowhere as bad as I thought it would be or maybe it was just because I was so fucked by then that it didn’t matter haha!
The rest was all downhill and I was feeling so accomplished by then. I knew I was going to make it and I felt absolutely euphoric coming down the hill, I managed to speed up and the last mile was great, I finished really strong which was my ambition! I finished in a time roughly between the time I said I wanted, but maybe a little slower than I thought. I figured I’d be disappointed but in no way was I. I couldn’t believe I’d done it, that I’d run for so long and made it through! To come from where I started to get this far is such an incredible feeling that it hasn’t even really sunk in with me yet. It was amazing to finish and have Jase and my favourite people there to celebrate with me and cheer me on!
I have never been as proud of myself as I was yesterday and still cannot believe that I ran a marathon… a few years ago I couldn’t have even dreamed that I’d do that and now I can proudly say that I have achieved yet another goal. It was the hardest thing ever but the most rewarding! Every little bit of training was worth it ❤
Thank you to everyone who messaged me over the past few days there was literally hundreds of messages and comments! To date I have raised over €1300 for Pieta House but a few people have asked can they sponsor me this week and so I will leave it until Friday before I send off the donation! Please message me if you wish to make a donation, either on Instagram: @angiemcglan or on Snapchat: @angiemcglan
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. Don’t ever think you can’t do something because you are wrong. I am so proud of myself and cannot believe how far I have come in a few short years.. who knows where I’ll be in another 5 years?