The ingredients were a heady mix, and they kept me going for the entire 26.2 miles.
It was the lady holding up a sign on the side of the road that read "You look like a ride. Yes you".
It was the countless number of children who held their little hands out for us to touch as we ran by them. It was realising that men in fact do not get cellulite.
It was the woman who ran ahead of me for a good chunk of the race in her lucky shorts. I know they were her lucky shorts because they had holes in the buttocks.
It was the man I met pre-race who used to be 15 stone but was minus three of those since he took up running four years ago, the same man had just completed a marathon on Saturday and slept in his camper van on Fitzwilliam Square the night before this run.
It was running by Crumlin Hospital and remembering my little brother. It was my neighbour Christine shouting "well done Deirdre" as I approached Terenure.
It was seeing my Pops soon after and getting a high five from a proud man who, it seems, never tires of cheering me on.
It was passing by the Dropping Well and remembering the beautiful, sunny day we gathered there after burying my little brother. It was the many, many kind people who lined the route and cheered on complete strangers, offering us sweets and chopped fruit as well as a heartfelt belief that their encouragement could help us all make the finish line, it did.
It was seeing my big bro when I least expected it, and then seeing him a little later shouting "go on sis" after hopping on his bike to catch me on the final furlong.
It was meeting my sister-in-law along the way and realising that this would be the year that we both Ran The Marathon. It was realising that the entire world does not clock things in kilometres and that good old-fashioned miles per hour still count.
And most of all it was the weather, the glorious sunny day that further contributed to my runner's tan. Yes, it was the weather that really made the 34th Dublin Marathon a joy to navigate.
All of the above meant that the decision I made during a ten-mile run in northern Spain last Wednesday to take part in the Airtricity Dublin Marathon was a damn good one.
That was the first time I'd run outside the area in which I live, it was mostly up hill and an Emily Dickinson quote was spinning around my head: "If your nerve, deny you, go above your nerve."
Up to that moment the idea of running this beast was just an aspiration, I definitely wanted to do it but I was very afraid that I couldn't do it. Even worse, I was afraid I was setting myself up to fail.
That, and physically getting outside my comfort zone helped me realise that fear really can hold you back, but only if you allow it to.
After last week's run I emailed my brother and got the following response: "Go girl, and don't worry about your time, just cross the finish line." But, of course, having definite goals are important to me and my aim was to complete the run in under four hours. I'd done the training so in my head yesterday became a run in four parts, with the aim being seven miles an hour.
My mantra was: '7, 14, 21 in three hours and then take it home', which I did in 3hrs 42 mins.
It was a little terrifying, exhilarating, exhausting, satisfying and, ultimately, totally enjoyable.
A friend of mine sent me this Gustav Flaubert quote while I was away: "We shall find life tolerable once we have consented to be always ill at ease."
Running a marathon made me feel I was living that quote.