Parkrun: where we all run our own race…

I do so love Parkrun. I’ve completed 43 on 3 different courses and all of which have had the same thing in common – they’re all about people trying to achieve their own personal goals and feel good. They are always full of happy positive encouraging people, from the runners to the marshals and supporters who cheer everyone on.

No one comes last at a Parkrun as there’s always a Tailwalker and no one is ever told they can’t join in. Run, walk, crawl – sprint it like Usain Bolt or plod along with your dog in tow, everyone is welcome.

  • Are you trying to get a PB? Good luck to you, let’s hope you smash that target!
  • Is your focus on trying to get physically fit? Good on you, keep on going!
  • Are you participating to help your mental health and feel better about yourself? We think you’re great, welcome welcome!
  • Are you meeting up with friends and enjoying the experience together? Perfect, have fun!
  • Is this something you’re doing with your family to give you quality time? What a great idea, enjoy!

Last week I went to my local Parkrun and it was such a jolly affair. It’s going to be a few weeks before I can go again so in the meantime I wrote a little ditty…

Parkrun

Happy chatter fills the air, colourful t-shirts everywhere;

Let’s limber up, jog on the spot, muscles loose, we’re ready to trot;

The hooter sounds and off we go, watches set, faces a glow;

Some legs are fast, they really Race, others take a more leisurely pace;

Are you quick or are you slow? No one cares just GO GO GO!

Marshals cheer as we run by, “You can do it!” They all cry;

We reach the finish, cross the line, grins all round and feeling fine 😃

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Learn to rest not quit…

I was SO tired, SO fed up and just, well… bleurgh!!☹️ The mojo had disappeared along with my energy, my body was aching and I’d forgotten how to enjoy running – too busy worrying about times and distances!

I’m not a quitter, but I definitely needed a little rest – to recharge and refocus; so a week off, some quality time with family and friends, abit of pampering, refuelling with some tasty healthy food and taking time to just breathe…

Today I felt ready to start again…gently! So a run home from work was spent just pootling along, smelling the bonfires, watching the fireworks going off in the gardens and seeing the stars starting to peek out in the night sky…🎇✨

I have no idea what the distance was, it wasn’t far, but it doesn’t matter; I have no idea what the time was, it wasn’t quick, but it doesn’t matter; what matters is that I went for a run and remembered to smile 😊

A morning run…

The thought it popped

into my mind and then it pounded

until I agreed

With trainers laced

I stepped out of my comfort zone

and started the run

Mornings are not

my cuppa tea I prefer my bed

and my warm duvet

But off I went

down the road whilst the birds tweeted

happy in their trees

The sun it peeped

from behind the horizon shining

it’s cheery hello

A milkman whistled

as he swung his bottles and waved

As I plodded by

A dog walked

it’s person along sniffing scents of

the wonderous world

My senses calmed

My heart began to sing and dance

and I felt alive

Listening to my angel sing…

Long story short:

I went, I ran, I conquered!

London Landmarks Half Marathon done…Aimed for 3:00, hoped for 2:30 and achieved 2:28:34 with a cheeky sprint at the end too!

My first half marathon completed – a goal for 2018 achieved.

medal

Long story long:

I shall tell you about the high fives from all the #yellowsweatband runners, the smiles and encouraging words from other runners, the fantastic supporters banging their drums, dancing, singing, cheering us on! I shall tell you how this kept me going especially during mile 7-8 which seemed to stretch to infinity and beyond.

toy story run

I shall tell you how, when I stumbled and nearly took out all the runners around me (mile 1 really started SO well!) they held me up so I didn’t fall and off we went again!

I shall tell you about miles 10-12 when I was in my own private hell only to look up and see the hubster cheering me on, spurring me on to a quicker finish than I’d thought possible (still makes me quite emotional thinking back to how much support he showed me, how much faith he had in me that I could do this race – this race that I, even at the start, was worried I might not be able to complete without walking).

sprint finish

(please note the face of sheer determination as I sprinted for the finish line – I promise I was smiling on the inside!)

All the way through my training – I kept in mind the following quote from Ayn Rand “The question isn’t who is going to let me; the question is who is going to stop me”. So often the person who stops us is ourselves; we fret, we frown, we don’t believe in ourselves and we listen to that negative demon on our shoulder who whispers in our ear and says we are not good enough. We ignore the angel on the other shoulder who says “yes you can”, the angel that tells us to flap our wings and trust that we will fly…

We need to give our angel the opportunity to sing louder to us than the demon; for it is their voice, their words, their songs which can inspire us to achieve our dreams. We all have an angel singing to us, we just need to learn to start listening…because when we do, there is no limit to what we can achieve.

I am reminded me of a beautiful poem by Erin Hanson, called “What if I fall?”…

what if i fall

Check out Erin Hanson’s website here: http://thepoeticunderground.com/

 

I’ve done it…don’t know whether to laugh or cry!

So this morning at 6:15am (oh my Lordy just getting out of bed that early was a challenge in itself!😳😄) I set off to complete Day31 of this RED January malarkey!

2miles later I finished with a sprint home, spring in my step and the biggest grin on my face ever!! 😁 I also wanted to cry 😭 … it was such an emotional moment – I have achieved something I didn’t know I could do and, when you can say that and know you’ve really worked hard to do it, well…it seems that tears as well as laughter must follow!

70miles/112km run, 40miles/64km walked, 2xRugby & 1xZumba and £100+ for the Charity MIND and that was it – the challenge is complete!!

My fabulous friends and family have put up with my daily posts and with my endless natterings about running and have been unfailingly supportive and encouraging – they’ve helped me more than they’ll ever know 💕💕

My fellow REDders have made me laugh, made me cry and have inspired me to really push myself and I am proud to be part of this positive and friendly community.

I have loved every moment and can’t wait to do it all again next year ❤️😊❤️😊❤️

In the meantime…what’snext??😉

Hecklers…don’t ya just love ‘em?!!

Dear Diary

Day 26 REDJanuary…

So today I was heckled for the first time (tbf I’m surprised it’s taken this long!)…young lad called out to me across the road, patted his stomach and asked if I was running to get rid of all my fat?… “haha you’ll be there all night if you are!”

How joyful…

He got a bit confused when I thanked him for his comments and said they were much appreciated… he walked off on a right old strop!!

What an arsehat!

Well I don’t care what I look like or whether I wobble as I plod along – I ran another 2miles tonight and I feel great!

Yes yes, I am a larger lady…thanks for noticing. What you failed to mention young man is that I’m also fabulous and a phenomenal woman…but don’t worry, you can tell me that next time 😉

***

I love the poem Phenomenal Woman by Maya Angelou…speaks to me on many levels and when I’m in need of a bit of lifting up it’s what I read…here it is put to some music in a campaign by This Girl Can 😊

https://youtu.be/BZoXyIxqFRc

Never argue with a Dame…

Hi Peeps!!

Gosh it’s been a while hasn’t it?!

You’ve not been far from my thoughts, sorry to be away so long…

So what’s been going on then? Have you been having fun and enjoying 2018? I hope so.

I’ve found this year to already be a remarkable improvement on the last !

Well, when you get told you’re brave by Dame Kelly Holmes – peer of the realm, Olympic Champion and all round awesome woman – it’s hard not to be just the tiniest bit jolly!

(Pics courtesy of streets-united.com, olympicpark10k.com & the sun.co.uk)

I remember watching Dame KH race at the Athens Olympics and being blown away by how amazing she was; she had an unabiding sense of purpose, was composed and strong as she ran and was filled with raw overwhelming happiness when she crossed the finish line…Dame KH was just SO inspiring. I’ll never be able to run like her but I try to push myself beyond what I think I can do, just as she does… who knew I’d be chatting (albeit via Twitter) with her years later…bizarre really!

Anyways, why am I brave? If I’m honest I’m not! Dame KH is doing REDJanuary and all us REDders were all sharing our daily stories on Twitter…I’d just walked to work and run home again (2miles each way) in the pouring freezing cold rain and wind…and that’s when I was complimented! I’d have said I was more daft coz it really was rather horrid out (and she was probably just being kind rather than accurate!) but hey, I’ll take ‘brave’ and say thank you 😊

Yep that’s made my January 2018 so far!!

Here’s wishing you a great rest of January 2018. See you again soon, I’ll try not to stay away so long next time xx