In what is arguably the city of romance, it was a day of extraordinary achievement for Cairns woman Harriet David, who crossed the line of the Paris Marathon in a time of 4:50:02 on Sunday (AEST).
Our 2015 IMP Graduate lined up with more than 57,000 other competitors from around the world and despite nerves at the start she was on a high at the finish.
“It is the most satisfying feeling, out of this world. I am proud, so proud, I quickly shook the disappointment of not getting the time I hoped for, but how many people can actually run a marathon?
“If you’re not willing to fight then you might as well go home,” she said.
Harriet registered for the Paris event to raise awareness of the importance of living an active lifestyle and setting a good example to her two children.
Deek said he is proud of all IMP Graduates and the way they continue to drive change among their own family and friends, and in the wider community.
“This young mother from Cairns is an inspiration to us all. The challenges she overcame getting to New York and running the marathon in 2015 have given her incredible confidence, self-belief and profile, and now for her to be heading to Paris, by herself, to run her second marathon is just amazing,” Rob said.
“It’s a wonderful example of the change and power that resides in us all when we have a purpose, self-confidence and do the hard work. Go Harriet, we weren’t there this time, but were with you every step!”
It was Harriet’s first overseas trip by herself, which the 27-year-old said was challenging at times, but definitely had its advantages.
“I’m in the fashion city of the world! And I get to eat my favourite food – chocolate croissants!”
While her journey has proven to be the trip of a lifetime, Harriet said she was eager to share her triumph with her family.
“I’m looking forward to training my father for his very first marathon, which he is hoping to do next year in Canada. And also just to be there for my running group and focus on their running goals as well,” Harriet said of the Cairns Deadly Runners, who she coaches twice weekly.
Congratulations, Harriet, we are all so very proud of you! Rest up and enjoy the shopping and croissants!