Have you ever thought about running a marathon?
Nor me – but we went to the Chester half marathon (13 miles) to cheer on some friends – and our eldest son who ran for the first time. Although quite fit, he was very apprehensive and wasn’t at all sure that he would be able to finish the race but he said that, once he started, he felt he had to carry on. When he reached 6 miles, he was getting tired but he said there were so many people shouting and clapping, and cheering him on, people standing on the doorsteps of their houses, bands playing, runners in front of him wearing T-shirts saying ‘keep on running’, that he felt he had to go on – he realised: “Failure would be worse than not carrying on”.
So he finished the race. We were standing on the last bridge before the finish line, clapping and shouting with everyone else. We met him at the finish line afterwards – once he had collected his medal – and his T-shirt – and he was exhausted but euphoric. He said. “I’ve never felt anything like it – it’s like meditating – but incredibly more powerful. All those people – over 6,000 runners – and all the volunteers, guiding, handing out water bottles, the paramedics and first aiders – and all the onlookers. Such a feeling of goodwill, from good people – so different to what you see on the news on TV every day.”
“I felt like I was running for life itself – there were people fighting cancer, fighting to the finish – and I was one of them, fighting with them, sharing an amazing experience and sense of achievement.”
So if you’ve never been to watch a marathon – go and see this incredible experience for yourself. If you’re feeling down, it’s the best anti-depressant you can take – with no side effects – and no addictions. Dane had to be helped to the car, but this day will stay with him – and us – as a memory to treasure forever.
Published in the May edition of the Whitchurch Gossip