As is always the way with my plans though, this isn't how things have turned out. I'm a good stone and a half heavier than I should be, have only run one multi-day event, and I haven't managed the level of mileage I'd expected, or hoped for, in training. I'm also carrying a fair few niggles, I think mostly as a result of not doing enough strength training and running rather sporadically.
However, I have done quite a few races (nine so far since January, including yesterday's thoroughly enjoyable Bewl Water Marathon) and although physically I may not be in optimum shape, I am without a doubt mentally stronger than I have ever been. Although I'm feeling pretty realistic about the likelihood of injury, very long days out on the roads around Windermere, and a whole world of pain during the 10in10, I'm also feeling incredibly confident about my determination to complete the event. I have no doubt that I will get to the end of day 10, and I'm definitely looking forward to the experience of being at Brathay, really getting to know and to support my fellow 10in10ers through their own journeys around the lake, and to seeing what sort of person I become by the time I get to that finish line for the tenth time. Without a doubt, the experience of the 10in10 will change me. To say I'm going to do a big event is one thing, but actually completing it will be something else and I can't begin to imagine how significant it is going to be for me. Finishing the 52 miler last year was pretty major, and the Toad too - the self-confidence they both gave me was massive - but I'm sure this will have an even bigger impact, but let's hope that's not just related to the level of injury I sustain ;)
The 10in10 has also (already!) been a massive fundraising success for me, really as a result of the incredible generosity of my family, friends and work colleagues (if you're reading this and you've already sponsored me, or are planning to sponsor me, THANK-YOU!!). I've raised more so far than I've ever done before, and the run hasn't even started - I'm very hopeful that my sponsorship total will continue to rise too, particularly as everyone realises just how difficult I'm finding it to get up each day to run the next marathon ;) I think that running for Brathay has probably made the fundraising easier though - it's a really great cause that I think most people understand and appreciate and as well as wanting to support me, everyone does seem to also want to help the children that Brathay support. If you want to as well...and it would be hugely appreciated...you can do it via my justgiving link here: http://www.justgiving.com/naomi-runs-10in10
So, now I need to sort out the practical stuff for the 10in10 - the clothes, the shoes, and the food. Unfortunately two thirds of the branded kit we're meant to be wearing doesn't fit me properly, I can't really afford to buy everything else I need, and when I wore my new (long coveted) Kayano trainers for the Bewl Water marathon yesterday, I got the most shocking blisters...but these are things I'm just not going to worry about. Although it seems that my fellow 10in10ers are all already packed and ready to go, I am treating this much like everything else I do...with last minute nonchalance ;) Although that might just be my way of dealing with the panic that's bubbling away under the surface!
Anyway, I'll buy a few final bits I need on Wednesday, pack on Wednesday night, and then I'm driving up on Thursday to get settled at Brathay before our first marathon on Friday!! Wish me luck ;)