In 1997, at the age of 28, a back problem inspired me to take action and get fit as I didn’t want to go through my life affected by back pain the same way my mum and grandfather did. I took action by entering the London Marathon and got in first time!
I was never a committed runner growing up, my dad ran with me in my first Fun Run in the 80’s and would still run from time to time but not for any great purpose. I had always loved watching the London Marathon on tv and dreamed of running it one day. I got a massive shock when the acceptance magazine dropped through the letterbox but it never once occurred to me that I couldn’t do it. I trained enough to get round but crossing the finish line that day completely changed my life. I thought that if I could do it then anyone could and wanted to be able to inspire others to go after the things they previously thought impossible for them so I quit my job and trained to become a Personal Trainer.
I have continued to run a marathon every year since then and challenged myself by running the 5k, 10k, Half Marathon and Marathon at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival in 2014. This involved running the Half as fast as I could before jumping on a motorbike to get back to the start and then running a marathon. Like with London, it never occurred to me that I couldn’t do it, more a case of how I would do it.
I continue to run to try to become better, like everyone else, but instead of trying to run all the miles, I now focus on running to how I want to feel and training my body to run more efficiently so I can run faster without relying on speedwork.
I continue to challenge myself both in development as a Personal Trainer and physically by doing events that require me to step outside of my comfort zone. In 2017, I will be taking part in my first Ironman 70.3. On my journey so far, I have taught myself how to do the crawl and cycle way beyond anything I’ve ever done before.
I believe challenging ourselves help us grow mentally as well as physically and it’s the learning from making mistakes along the way that develop us into greater human beings. Enjoy your journey 🙂