Global Running Day Inspiration From Laura
#Globalrunningday it feels strange celebrating a day which not long ago was not even on my radar. In August 2017 I decided to do something for myself once my youngest started school. My husband @liam_tries_to_run was a keen runner and had just completed his first marathon and I was in absolute awe of anyone who ran. Could I run? Someone who always made excuses to get out of PE, to join the gym, to go to a fitness class. I had never stuck to any sort of exercise and have had an unused gym membership 3 times.
Before I got married I was never happy with my weight, I wasn’t overweight just a bit squidgy and hid it well. I didn’t ever find the motivation to lose it/tone up and I was happy with how I looked on my wedding day but I think that was more down to the stresses of planning a wedding and trying to starve myself the few weeks leading up to it. Once married I fell pregnant within a few months and that is when I started to put on weight. Too many cakes and biscuits and faddy diets that didn’t work, I then had my second baby 4 years later. A long time was spent being unhappy with my body and feeling very frumpy! One day I ran out of excuses and I said out loud ‘I’m going to change!’ I joined an online fitness group which meant I didn’t need to go near a gym and started with 2 workouts per week I could do at home and was advised what to eat and how to track it. After a few months sticking to it and measuring myself (not just weighing) I felt so much better. We then go back to this day in August 2017.....the start of my journey. ‘Do you think I can run?’ I asked my husband ‘of course you can’ was his reply so as we had a rare child free day I asked him to take me around the block. I jogged, not very fast but I didn’t stop and I ran for a whole mile, I didn’t get laughed at, I didn’t pass out and I felt ok(ish) well ok enough to give it another go the next day. I did this same mile loop a few times getting slightly quicker and more confident with Liam for support. I then ventured out alone I went a bit faster I ran a bit further but I always kept my house in the centre of my run just in case anything happened like I needed the toilet, I needed a drink, teenagers threw a bottle at me (genuine fear) or people laughed at me. Once my youngest started school in the September I decided on my day off I would go out to a local park and work up to 5k. Some weeks a friend would join me for support and sometimes I was alone but enjoyed being outdoors and more importantly the way I was feeling inside and out! Clothes were starting to become too big, I was still eating very well and I felt great! I was supported by Liam and my family and encouraged to go for a run. By Christmas I had worked up to 5k and joined parkrun, I was so nervous to go to this 5k timed event each week and my biggest fear was would I be last? I think my first parkrun time was a respectable 34 mins and I loved going each week trying to better my time. By February 2018 I was running 5k 3 times a week and was enjoying this new routine. With Liam marathon training again I decided to push myself and enter a 10k race Hook 10k was in May so I had plenty of time to work up to this distance. I also decided to join the same running club (Hatch Warren Runners) as my husband and see if that helped my journey! This was the best thing I ever did, I have made some amazing running friends and have learnt so much in the last year - I feel honoured to wear club colours at every race although in the early days I was worried people would think I was a professional and knew what I was doing, I still don’t!
So as you can guess 10k lead to signing up to a 10mile race and then a half marathon (although ironically the half came before the 10 mile race) I still don’t really class my self as a proper runner but I have a good laugh trying! I have now completed 4 half marathons, 2 10 milers, many 10ks and 5ks! There will be more on the horizon but I’m not sure I’ll ever take on a marathon.
THE BEST THINGS ABOUT RUNNING ARE;
The views of the countryside and seeing places I would not normally see by driving.
How proud and encouraging my children are of me - they both love running too and it’s great to lead by example.
I haven’t given a hoot about weighing myself for months - something that was so major in my life for years is now a memory!
How in awe I am of anyone who runs further than a half marathon - being a cheerleader at 3 Marathons has made me realise how amazing this achievement is!
It’s free (well kind of) and I can do it anywhere, anytime and its amazing how great I feel after every run!
I get to spend quality time with Liam doing something we both love. I am a lot slower than him but I really appreciate every run we have together, without his initial support and encouragement through 2 half marathons I wouldn’t have continued.
I always assumed I wouldn’t have time to fit in exercise around family life, work, various other activities I’m involved in but I make it work. (I also thought that I wouldn’t stick to running) I manage to fit in at least 4 runs per week with careful planning and willing babysitters. No one has ever laughed at me or thrown a bottle at me and I always feel amazing after every run.