Meet the runners taking on New York Marathon! Part Two*

Saturday, 21 October 2017, By Alex Anasson

Marnie is a Vision PT celebrity, a true ambassador for who we are and what we do at Vision, having lost 70kilos since November 2015, NYC will mark her two years with us and will be her first marathon - so is sure to be an emotional day! 

What are you most looking forward to in relation to the New York Marathon? 

Running my first ever marathon in what's known as the biggest and best marathon in the world, while doing it with Vision family is pretty exciting. I've also never been to New York before so another first. What an entrance into marathon running!

Being lucky enough to be selected as part of the Opening Ceremony on the Friday, representing Australia and Vision is a privilege I wasn't expecting. That's going to make this experience that little bit more special.

I'm looking forward to running the 5km Dash on the Saturday and running over the finish line with my Vision family.

 How has your training been going? 

Pretty good. While the marathon has come around very quickly, I feel like I've been training for months. Hang on, I have haha! Am I physically ready for the marathon? I've been working around injury for a while, but I'm probably as ready as I can be.

What has been the hardest part of training for this race? 

Being stubborn and refusing to let go of most of my weekly Group sessions has meant that all my LSD runs have started from home on a Saturday morning, running in the dark. That's been the mentally toughest challenge and least enjoyable part of training, running around in the dark by myself. I definitely need people around me. The bright light has been that ending my LSD runs with run club has kept me buoyed up. 

Pushing through training with injuries hasn't been much fun. I've had to learn the hard way that I've pushed too hard, too long and now it's a little too late. Live and learn! It's meant I've cut corners with my training which will result in me not getting the time I want on race day. I'm having to reset my thinking as a result.

Finding a balance between family life, friends, work, training and my usual workouts has been tricky. Sleep has been impeded. While very grateful, I've felt bad for Kat, getting her out of bed at 4am on Saturday mornings so she can leap frog me in the car to ensure I don't get lost (still no sense of direction), while I've been running around the streets doing my LSD runs.

What has been the best part? 

Forming a strong bond and friendship with a fellow Visionary as a result of the marathon. Under normal circumstances, I probably wouldn't have had the opportunity to have connected much with Michele given our different times in the Studio, however we started supporting each other very early on and I've met this incredibly special person as a result. There's been a comradery between our little NYC Marathon team, as we train, swap stories and support each other. It's made this experience all the more special, doing this with Vision family.

Knowing that I'm about to achieve running a marathon. This is something that so many people will never ever experience. It'll be the first marathon for me, but I've already committed to the Runaway Barossa Marathon and an ultra-marathon in 2018. Knowing that the NYC Marathon is a segue for other marathons and at least one ulta-marathon, means I'll still be working on goals, especially considering I thought I'd always be a short distance runner.

Training for the NYC Marathon has been exciting, scary and everything in between. I've pushed myself past what I thought my limits were. I'm mentally getting myself in the zone to run the marathon. I'm looking forward to that feeling of achievement when I cross the finish line.

Have you got anything special/rituals you will be doing on race day?

I always take a photo of my Vision singlet, runners and bib the night before race day and post it on Facebook and Instagram. It's a silly ritual, but I'm not tempting fate by not doing it.

While the alarm clock is set the night before, I also set the alarm on my mobile for 10 minutes later and then my work mobile alarm 5 minutes later again, just in case of power failure or sleeping through (OCD tendencies).

On race day, I systematically check that my headphones and music is syncing via Map My Runs. I do this as soon as I get up and then again before walking out the door (more OCD tendencies).

I like quiet time to get my head in the zone pre-race, so you generally don't get much in the way of conversation from me before I run.

Did you ever think you would be running a marathon? 

A marathon was never on the cards for me. Never in a million years did I ever think about running one. I remember telling James I would always be a 5km runner and I'd do one 10km run just so I could tick it off. The next minute, he poked me to run a half marathon. That was going to be a one-off experience too, that is until you put out an expression of interest about the NYC marathon. James started talking about it before you held the info session. I got excited. You held the info session and the rest as they say, is history! When I'm home from New York, I'll take a week or two off running (only) and then James and I'll start ultra-marathon planning talks.

Any tips to anyone looking at taking on their first marathon or fun run?  

Believe you can do it and you will. The mind is a powerful tool. Preparation is key. While you need to have your body physically ready, you also need to get your mind mentally ready.

Regardless if you're doing a 5km, 10km, 15km, half marathon or marathon, listen to your body. If you have a niggle stop and get it seen to before it turns into an injury. Injuries set you back with your training and if not recovered prior to the event, can also set you back with your race time.

For a marathon, I highly recommend finding yourself a running buddy to run with during those long runs, especially as you increase your distance. Also surround yourself with a support crew who will give you some love and an ear over the months of training, listening to all your babble about training, injuries, excitement, fears, the upcoming marathon, the importance of your play list, etc.

Set a realistic race time or race pace (if like me, that's your thing). Running 42.2kms is different to running 21.1kms, likewise running 21.1kms is different to running 10kms and so on.

Learn to hydrate and fuel appropriately for you, even though it might feel challenging. It's important.  

Any other thoughts or feelings you want to share?

I'm grateful for the opportunity to be running in the NYC Marathon. I would never have registered for this event on my own. It has only eventuated because Vision put the opportunity out there.

I'm also very grateful for the information you've provided over the past months through the Workshops Alex. These sessions have greatly assisted with education and preparation for not only my first marathon, but also one being run overseas. Advice from Tom, James and Josh has also been very valuable.

This journey has really been a rollercoaster of emotions and has a physical impact on the body. It's been different to what I expected. I don't really know what I expected going into this. This is not something I could or would have done on my own. So very grateful that this is the start of my running progression, getting me past 'only' half marathons. Thank you, Vision.

*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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