Being active is such an important part of staying well. That being said, I am the first to put it off feigning tiredness, or being too busy etc etc. These just excuses 99% of the time.
I know that after I've gone for a run, done a spin class, or been to the gym that I feel so good. Even if I was feeling tired before, I feel so incredibly energized afterwards. I feel so proud of myself that I vow to continue my fitness journey.
In March 2019, I was going through a really tough time. I was signed off from work and I was struggling with my identity as a Mum. I had thought about running for a long time but like most things, I'd give up when it felt uncomfortable or hard. I'd tell myself that I wasn't a runner or would I ever be, so it was pointless trying. But, during this time off of work, I decided to give it a go. I downloaded the couch to 5k app, and with Sarah Millican in my ears and off I went. The first couple of runs were ok. But after a while, I started to struggle. Struggle more mentally though, than physically. So I gave up running again.
A couple of weeks later, Andy saw a poster advertising a Couch to 5k at a local running group, being sold as being for "Absolute Beginners" I knew that if I wanted to be a runner, then doing it in a group was the only way I was going to get there. I decided to sign up and convinced my friend Hannah to sign up too.
The first week, our coach said "If you run, then you're a runner"
Every week I went. I ran and I did my homework. But, I didn't actually believe that I would be able to run 5k without stopping. The big day came and I was terrified. But, I pushed through and did it! At the time, I thought I was hooked on running but looking back now, I was so delighted with what I had achieved, I wanted to achieve more and more.
A week later, I signed up for a 5 to 10k programme with the same group. Again, 10k seemed a bit much but every week I showed up to the group, did my homework, running further and further. It was at this point, I decided to do something crazy. I entered the ballot for the London Landmarks Half Marathon. I could run 13.1 miles by March 2020. That would be fine!
It is now March 2020. I am scared and excited that the race is only 20 days away! My training hasn't been exactly to plan but it hasn't been too bad. I have made it to the gym for spinning a few times.
I still need to step it up though as it is not too late!
I decided on Sunday morning to wake up and get out there to run 10 miles. I didn't care what the weather was like, I knew I had to do it. It took a while to get up and get organised but off I went. I had my awesome hydration backpack, Rachel Hollis audiobook and my new LLHM leggings. The sun even came out for me! I did it. I ran 10 miles. It was not fast. It was not pretty and I walked a lot. My hips hurt so much. But I ran 10 miles as I planned to! It is mentally such hard work to battle against the voice inside your head who constantly tells you that you can't do things, and that you look ridiculous. I just made sure that the voice of my persistence was louder.
London Landmarks Half Marathon. I'm coming for you!
Bring. It. On.