I started running in 2015 when over a glass of wine, me and some family members decided we were going to run a half marathon in memory of my cousin. Before I’d even ran a mile, I took the plunge and decided that if I was going to do a half I may as well do a full marathon and without a second thought, I contacted a charity and was offered a place in the 2016 London Marathon.
My first parkrun in May 2015, I turned up in a cotton t-shirt, leggings and ill-fitting trainers. Seeing everyone in Lycra I wondered what I’d let myself in for, but I persevered. There were tears, tantrums, happiness, doubt and everything in between before I reached the finish line of my first ever marathon. After 5 hours and 39 minutes all I wanted to do was sign up for my next!
The 12 months from when I initially signed up were life-changing and running had changed me for the better. Since that glass of wine, I’ve clocked up many miles that has included two marathons, nine half marathons, 12 10k events, 57 parkruns, 40-day run steaks and many more ranging from 5 miles to 20-mile races. I’ve ran in different countries including Ireland, France, Italy and Lanzarote and find it’s one of the best ways to explore and enjoy different areas. I’m not stopping there with races planned well into 2019.
Running has taken me on a journey. It has helped me manage various situations and I continue to use it to my advantage. When I’m feeling down the fresh air, how confident running makes me feel instantly makes me feel human again and gets rid of the grey mist hanging around.
Come rain or shine, I can usually be found spending my weekends on a long run or at a parkrun – local or as a tourist – and I have now taken part in 14 different locations across the UK and including one in Italy! I love running, the way it makes me feel, the community and seeing how far I can push myself.
I am by no means a fast runner, but I am a runner and my love of running continues to grow with every stride.