I remember back in January, or close to it, when I decided I would spend this year doing races, thinking that my marathon in September was so far away and I would be all prepared and it would be an experience not to forget. Well all of a sudden it is upon me and while I am a bit nervous (I like to have my race bib before race day) I actually feel that I can do this. I will run a marathon. All 42.2kms of it.

I have done my training. I got an app especially for the training. I’ve eaten well.  Not always good or healthy, but well. I have learnt lots about myself and my body.

I am also really tired. I am struggling to get out of bed in the mornings.  My head is good, almost more alive than usual, tired yes, but more alert at the same time. Physically. I am knackered.

So what am I doing this week in preparation for the big day.  Planning what goes in my travel bag (a 3 hour drive to race location means I cannot leave anything to chance) and doing the physical and mental exercises to relax and rewind.

I’ve made a list, because I am a list person, and also because this is one race where I need to be uber organised.  On that list..? Even the most obvious things like what I am going to wear, right down to shoes and underwear.

Next is what goes into my camelbak.  Earphones, lollies, phone, tailwind (about 1-1 1/2 litres).

My lunch bag for post run drinks and nibblies before I get to the #eatallthefood stage – chocolate shake, diluted tailwind in water bottle, banana, peanut butter sandwiches.

Recovery change of clothes. Track pants and jacket, new shirt, deodorant, spare cap, ugg boots & peppermint cream for soothing sore feet.

For the other things, lots of stretches to keep my joints limber, two short runs (5 & 10k) and lots of water. Today and tomorrow will be a small amount of tailwind.

My husband and kids are coming with me – this is one race I really wanted them to be at. It’s a big thing for me, my first marathon, and they have supported me all year. Hubby and I will be packing a picnic for them to enjoy while chilling out for the 4.5+ hours they will be waiting watching.

To top it all off, it will be a 3am get up so I have been getting as much sleep as I can. Even though Saturday night I probably won’t get a lot (this is a common thing), the more rest you get in the days prior the better.

I was asked today, a bit tongue in cheek, if I as going to win. My response..”I’ll win my race. And get a PB because it’s the first time I’ve done it..” They replied that that was a beautifully positive way to look at it. And I have to agree. My race. My time. With my family there fore me.

Happy running, Jennifer.