People are locked for months in winter training schedules, consuming enough pasta to sink a small dingy, smothering themselves in endless amounts of pain relief cream and scouring iTunes in search of those songs to add to their ever increasing motivational playlists on their ipod. Oh and I forgot to mention the expensive trip to the all singing all
dancing trainer shop, which pops you on the running machine, analysis your running style and then sells you a pair of trainers, you need to take a small loan out to purchase.
So after slogging my sexy granny trolley (see piccie as it’s a source of amusement for all my colleagues until they realise how much stuff it contains and how easy it is to drag across town), massage bench and rucksack across London my couch is set up with beautifully scented towels ready to embrace the herd of runners that will lie on it for a welcomed treatment. Sam, my first runner, completing the course in a very impressive 3 hours 14 min looked incredibly fresh….unlike the exhausted, elated. emotional and relieved runners that trickle through later.
I’ve learnt an amazing toolbox of fancy soft tissue techniques, incredible stretches, but I found after only two runners I could have just stood there and tapped a light jig with my fingertips and they would have been grateful, it seemed just lying horizontal was enough in itself to bring that much needed sense of relief. I had a few couch rules, trainers off (not
one runner didn’t groan with pleasure at that request), medals left on and no sleeping on the couch!!! The hours flew by, being consumed by laughter, fascinating stories and a few tears of elation. My one questions to every runner I treated was “what’s for tea tonight”, oh this was a question and a half as each runner seemed to drift off in to a dreamy world of food fantasies; Chinese, McDonalds, pie chips and gravy, the list went on………….one runner really tickled me as he sternly told me “it ain’t gonna be pasta love, that for sure”.
I reflect on the day and the stories that I was told. The London marathon isn’t an event that people just decide to run because they want to complete a course of 26.2 miles (the 0.2 being as important as a full mile), but each person was running their own journey for their own reason, a lost loved one, mental battle or simply just because a bet with a mate down the pub. It opened my eyes to the sheer respect these runners deserve……as one runner said to me, I’ve done loads of half marathons but nobody told me how f*&king hard a jump it was to do a full marathon……bless him, but
through the blood, sweat and tears, I guarantee that he will be there next year, as will over half of those runners I treated on my couch that day…………and for me, well I won’t miss it for all the tea in China.