try," I say, but I don't believe I can do it.
announces that Peddie is now half a lap ahead of me. That stings me, so I lurch
into a duckfooted wobble. Straight pain on the thighs. There is no way to
express it, and my mind, often so happy to chew on verbal models of the world,
is empty. It had occurred to me before the race that it would be reasonable to
run 23 hours and just sit out the last hour. I consider it now. What more can I
do? Is it worth pushing on in such a wretched state for the sake of a mile or
But the race is
the distance covered and it is done, however one looks doing it. John is
run a little?" he asks.
Finally I am
"I can't. My
legs are absolutely shot."
he says. "But keep going. You may have Peddie and Record ahead of you but
they're not moving very fast. There's still a chance. This is where it matters,
because later you'll wish you'd packed in a little more. You can still get to
It's now three
o'clock in the afternoon. There's just one hour to go. Now that I have no hope
of running I can't imagine walking for another 60 minutes. I think of just
walking to 45 minutes to go and then I'll quit. I pretend I have something to
look forward to.
from clumps of spectators:
you're doing fabulous."