Congratulations to Katie Wilks
Sunday 4th October 2020
Congratulations to Katie who ran the 2020 Virtual London Marathon round St Veep on Sunday 4th October in the driving rain. Katie writes:
"The route I planned was 2 circular half marathons starting and ending at my house. The weather forecast wasn’t great so I thought I might need a re-group and change of clothes half-way through which turned out to be a good plan.
My sister arrived just before 9am to take a photo of me as I thought this might be the only record, how mistaken I was! I could not believe my ears when I trotted up my drive as Vangelis’ Chariots of Fire was playing at top volume and there was a send-off committee of very good friends. I started my app and was away. Every mile I clocked up there would be a little cheer from my phone and either Steve Cram or Paula Radcliffe would congratulate me on completing another mile! That was a really good idea and they also gave a bit of running info but mostly it was so windy I couldn’t hear that.
I honestly thought I would be running the 26.2 miles on my own and might get the occasional toot from a car. I could not have been more wrong. People came out of their houses to wave, bang pots and pans not once but on both laps. Four cars and their drivers (you know who you are!) followed me round all day shouting encouragement, tooting and keeping a careful eye out to make sure I hadn’t been hit by flying debris, washed away or fallen into a ditch.
The first half marathon was fine, but when I got home I was soaking and getting cold. I had a quick change of top, added a layer and set off again. The second half was more difficult as, by then, there was so much water on the road. Modern trainers are designed for water to drain out of them but there was just too much and my shoes were constantly full and just sloshing. This meant that my feet were heavy and at mile 18 one knee started to protest at the extra weight of my trainer. I ran and walked for the next four miles but by mile 22 my knee was starting to feel unstable and that is when I decided that I had to walk the rest if I was to complete the marathon. I felt disappointed with myself as I know, on a good day, I could have run the whole thing but it just wasn’t to be on that Sunday and it was far more important to actually finish. There is always a silver lining – a friend who wanted to walk with me walked all the last four miles. I really enjoyed her company and it made up for my disappointment many fold.
The start was amazingly unexpected and then came the end! Can you believe it, there was a ribbon for me to run through and more pot banging and cheering from so many people who had been waiting an absolute age in the wind and rain for me to finish.
When you have read this you will understand why “thank you” doesn’t seem enough. It was wet, windy and cold on Sunday. It made the run difficult but it was also horrid for all those who supported me. Vangelis, Ribbons, cheers, pot banging, tooting, patient waiting when I was slow, a warm coat put round my shoulders at mile 22 when I was freezing, company when I was walking and all those positive thoughts from those that couldn’t be there. That is what got me round. THANK YOU.
To the couple from London who stopped their car, chatted to me and by the time I got home had found me online and sponsored me. THANK YOU
To all of you who have sponsored me and for all the messages of support and encouragement, you have been wonderful. I have very nearly reached my target of £2,000 to raise for Spinal Research. THANK YOU"