A TWO-GAME suspension in the middle of the Hampden league season was the first domino to fall that would eventually lead to Adam McCosh completing his first marathon.
The Port Fairy veteran's off-field work helped him decide to attempt the popular bucket list item.
"I went for some long runs on my suspension weeks to keep my fitness up and did them with Steve Watty," the 37-year-old said.
"During those runs Steve told me he was doing the New York Marathon and I should consider it. Although I wasn't convinced I could, during the course of the week I spoke to my brother (Paul), who also advised me he was doing it.
"Then shortly after speaking with my wife (Fiona) we realised all the stars were aligning to make my first attempt at a Marathon.
"By stars aligning I mean I had a training partner, my twin brother is doing it, I felt my fitness with senior footy was a good platform to start and I felt my position on the footy field was stopping junior players who were good enough for seniors from getting the games they deserved.
McCosh said the challenges started to hit thick and fast once he "decided the time was right to try it".
"First one was I didn't know if my body would be able to handle runs over half-marathon distance because of significant football/surfing injuries I'd sustained in the past," he said.
"Secondly, it was finding the time to train with my business and family but in the end my wife and kids were amazing with their support and my body was only subject to the typical strains and soreness, which I overcame by treating my recovery as important as the running itself.
"Then there was the mental challenge when we decided to do the Melbourne Marathon three weeks before New York. That was a tough decision to make when I hadn't done a marathon before."
When it came to running in New York McCosh said he "went through the entire emotional spectrum".
"Happy, blank, determined, angry, sad and elated just to name a few," he said.
"For Melbourne Steve and I decided to run that race for a time goal, which we both achieved. I was wanting to get under three hours and 45 minutes and ended up with three hours and 41 minutes.
"For New York we decided to run slower and take in the experience more, but still try to get under four hours, which we did (3:54).
"I thought those goals were reasonable considering being 6'3 and over 91-kilograms, but there were definitely times during both marathons where I thought it wasn't going to happen.
"The 32 to 35-kilometres to the finish is a war zone and the biggest mental challenge I've ever faced so to run without stopping over the two marathons, I was extremely proud."
McCosh said running with the Team Sylvie Sunshine, which honours Watty's daughter who 15 months when she died of Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC) and raises money for Red Nose, top on was an honour as well.
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