Could I have done more training? Yes. Could I have partied a little less while focusing 100% on my nutrition? Most definitely yes. Do I feel ready? Umm, nooooo. But AM I ready?? YES. Well.... Sure, I am not as physically fit or as well prepared as the last full marathon I ran back in July 2015, but then I probably didn't feel 'ready' then either. Readiness is a complex issue. Do we ever feel, truly, 100% ready for anything, or is there always that flicker, that glimmer, or that binding whopping lightning strike, of doubt lingering within us as we embark on whatever the chosen project or task may be? My theory is you can never feel 100% ready, as that's just the dynamic nature of life, given that everything is constantly evolving and changing, but that despite this, or perhaps because of this, you should just go for it! What's the worst that can happen? We're as 'ready as we'll ever be', right? If you wait until you feel 100% ready, for anything, then you will never reach your destination. There's always more you can do. Always more to learn and improve upon. Not to mention that 'readiness' is not necessarily an indication of result or performance either: there have been races where I have felt completely undertrained and unprepared for (the 100km Challenge in Guizhou, or the 50km ultra - my first! - in Hebei, both in China in 2014, for example) but where I got awesome results (finishing alive and well under the cut off times was a plus) and conversely, there have been other races (such as the Gold Coast Half Marathon in 2014) where I have planned my race strategy and pace to the endth degree and know exactly what to do on race day to achieve a specific pb (I was aiming for 1:31) however jetlag or something else got the better of me that day and things didn't quite go to plan (finished in 1:34 though, so not too far off, but did not feel good for most of the race and nearly vomited all over my patiently waiting best friend at the finish line).
So basically: ready or not-as-ready-as-I-could-be - you never can tell what will go down on the day. Every marathon is so different too: such is the nature of the beast. Such is the mystery and excitement too. So, this ready-as-I'll-ever-be nutritionist-runner-amateur-comedienne-teacher-writer is as ready as she'll ever be and excited to see what race day will bring! This is by far the earliest race I've ever had the (I hope) pleasure of running - kick-off time is 4am with the recommendation to arrive at 3am! I likely won't be too much fun on the Friday night for my friends then, but will definitely make up for it come Saturday night guys!
If YOU have any races coming up later in the year, or simply want to improve your running times/performance/recovery, or perhaps you're chasing a new and improved Parkrun time, well then stay tuned for an exciting online event in October. I'll be launching a very special, 4-week mini course (a reboot program aimed to get you back on track) on eating to perform at your best: Eat To Win! This program will focus on getting back to basics and determining macromolecules, eating enough fuel for your needs throughout the day (without overcompensating after runs due to that pesky 'runger"), refuelling at the right times and with the perfect ratio of those macromolecules, real/whole food choices, and proper hydration. The program will run online so you can take part no matter where you are in the world, and will feature some fantastic tools/resources, bonuses, awesome motivation and support, and very importantly: weekly prizes. Wootwoot - who doesn't like prizes?! More on this later on....
My last bit of news this week is that my beginner's Vietnamese course has sadly come to an end. Yep, 16 lessons has positively flown by! Amazing what can be achieved in such a short space of time. In my last lesson, as lovely, enthusiastic, and friendly Lien (the awesome teacher at Vietlesson where I took the classes) reviewed everything I had learnt so far and asked me some questions, I realised how much more I could do or ever thought I'd be able to do. I introduced myself, we made small talk, I described my family, my job, my desires of where I want to live and work in life etc, and I asked her similar questions back. All in Vietnamese! I still have a long way to go, of course, but it's a reassuring start. The more I use it in shops/restaurants/when meeting people, the better I will get at it I know, so now I just need to practise practise practise. But I'm in exactly the right place to do that yes? Really lovely to hear back from people who I'm attempting to speak Vietnamese with when out and about in said shops/restaurants - some commented that they think my Vietnamese is good and one told me she thought I must have been here for 4 years instead of 4 months! She was probably just being lovely and kind, but hey-ho, I'll take that... If you are wanting to learn Vietnamese or to continue learning / to improve your Vietnamese I strongly urge you to check out Vietlesson Coffee House: http://www.vietlesson.com/ Mmmmm and they make an AWESOME banana and coffee smoothie too!