Contestants, Ready? Gladiators, Ready? 3,2,1…
On the awesome 90’s Saturday night entertainment show Gladiators, nobody ever put their hand up to say “no”.
There was never an awkward moment when referee John Anderson was forced to remove the whistle from his pursed lips and hold his hand up as the contestant, nervous and shaking, took another moment to compose themselves.
It is possible that every single one of the 8 series-worth of contestants was completely ready and self-assured as they looked into Shadow’s bulging eyes or stood at the top of a ramp in a metal and glass sphere.
Far more likely is that, even though they knew that they had put in the training and were in great shape, they were worried they were nowhere near ready and had a thousand doubts rushing through a skull that was about to be smashed by a pugil stick.
Since January, I will have run nearly 600 miles including three individual marathons in training (not races, just a normal weekend on my own).
I have lost about three kilograms (7 pounds) and on a couple of occasions, with the right light and the stars aligning, may even have spotted an “ab” in the mirror.
And despite all this, with under a week to go until London2Brighton, I am absolutely PETRIFIED.
Actually though – I’m not.
I’ve been fretting about the event for so long and whether or not I am prepared that I have now gone past the point of worrying to a zen-like place beyond.
Being worried has just been my default setting for the last month or so.
Whatever happens on Saturday, I will get from London to Brighton.
There is a quote attributed to Dean Karnazes “run if you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up”.
This is the spirit in which I will undertake the race this weekend.
If the sun shines or the winds blow, if biblical downpours turn the paths into quagmires or any number of plagues beset the course, I will just keep plodding along, chewing on a flapjack.
I have 8k of running left this week before I depart on my biggest challenge ever and I intend to enjoy Saturday, no matter what may come.