The Fear

I am just back from an amazing three days of running with The Centurion Team. I covered 59 miles, climbed a lot, ran down hills a lot, laughed too much, ate even more and spent some real quality time with the amazing Debbie Martin -Consani who I am just in awe of (she carries lipgloss in her running pack whilst smashing apart 100mile races) and Danny Kendall the coolest and fastest GB man in the desert having recently finishing 4th at the MdS. Esteemed company.

Wings for Life Run Race Report

Funny enough as I go on enough about not drinking water…spot me drinking water!!

“The scale was global, the ambition truly great and the party one to remember, as more than 35,000 people in 32 countries took part in the inaugural Wings for Life World Run in pursuit of a cure for spinal cord injury. ” 

Final Global Results: Women’s race

1. Elise Molvik (NOR)/ ran in Norway 54.79km
2. Nathalie Vasseur (FRA) France 51.26
3. Svetlana Shepuleva (MD)/Turkey 48.29
4. Mfunzi Ntombesintu (RSA)/ South Africa 47.57
5. Lea Bäuscher (GER)/Germany 46.23
6. Haley Chura (USA)/USA 45.61
7. Joanna Zakrzewski (GBR)/UK 45.39
8. Edwina Sutton (GBR)/UK 45.38
9. Maria Lundgren (SWE)/Sweden 45.24
10. Daniela Ryf (SUI)/Switzerland 44.44

What a day! I had no idea of the global scale or the magnitude of this run, really until I had finished and friends were texting and calling saying we have been watching you running over the live feed it was so exciting!

I had been invited to this race by Simon Freeman of Freestak ( I was a little unsure about ‘racing’ as only a month after SDW50 and I like to have at least 10 days rest and then get back into training slowly after a race and let my family have some mum energy! But as my good buddies Robbie and Paul were going to be running and there was the offer of a hotel room the night before (like a pro, into room at 9pm, asleep by 9.01pm, up at 7.30am. BEST night of sleep for almost 4 years!) I couldn’t resist. I replied to Simon that I would run and just see how far I got.

Believing in my Body

I am just about to embark on ‘serious’ training for the Lakeland 50 at the end of July. This is the British Ultra Championships. Its a serious race with an elite field and over 9,000ft of climbing over 50 miles. I have spent the last few days creating horrendous training ideas to improve my strength both in ascending and descending. I am excited to get back in hard core, cant get legs to go upstairs, will just sleep on the sofa, kind of training.

10 Things I Learnt by Running 50 miles (or my SDW 50 mile race report)

1. Tapers can mean no running and that is OK. I didn’t run for 2 weeks before the race. I was injured and sad, I was freaking out inside my head. But I tried to trust my training. I sent panic messages to my Centurion buddies. I cant walk let alone run!

The 50 mile Question

‘Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it’

My husband sent me this quote last week. Its apt for this week. As I face my biggest ultra challenge so far over the South Downs.

The Balance

An awkward question… when asked by a long lost friend over tea and cake last Saturday when she asked what our plans were for the next day. ‘I’m going off running all morning,’ is the answer. All eyes turned expectantly to Husband McDreamy – ‘you let her do this?’ ‘What do you get in return?’ ‘Oh I’m supposed to get something in return?’ he laughed as we brushed over the moment, but the comment stayed with me for quite a while.

The Slog

I am slogging it out in training and life at the moment. Everything is tiring, everything is taking such an effort to get done, standards are slipping, the hoover is being pushed around with less and less frequency and shares are being taken out in Pampers wet wipes as I use these for every household chore from snot wiping to basin cleaning. This is the hardest part of training.

Why do you do it?

‘Miss?’  Said a girl at school yesterday. ‘Is it true you can run 30 miles?’ ‘Yes I said, I can.’ ‘Why?’ She said. ‘Ummmmmm’, I answered in that inspirational and awe inspiring way. ‘Well because really its the only thing I am good at;  running a long way in a straight line, its takes a certain sort of person…’ I then launched into my full athletic history, which by then she had lost interest and wondered off to talk to boys.

Country to Capital 45

There is nothing like a plan coming together. There is nothing like the weather gods having peed all over you for every single training session, turning their spouts off and letting the sun shine on the beauty of a hard earnt effort. There is nothing like joining a team who look after you, encourage you and will sacrifice their own races to help you achieve their goals and there is nothing like working so hard and bloody achieving what you set out to do.

Chasing Time

The biggest shock in my life came after I had my first child. Bam! There you go Mum-yes that’s you now, here’s the child, oh yes that’s Daddy, but he is about to go back to work, to his job, his friends, his routine, here you are, this is you now. Sorry-did you want to go out, no the baby needs feeding, sorry did you want to go to the loo? No you must take me with you. A shower? You are joking? And now you want to go running? Are you having a laugh?

But I really want to. And anything I really want to do  I do (ask my sisters!)!

Hang on you are you just getting the gist of me? I know lets have another one! Woooooohooo, now you really don’t have time to change your pants lets alone get out the door without 2 small helpers.  But slowly, like everything in life you learn to cope, you learn to adapt, you see life as changed not ruined. Your inner self isn’t changed, it just is seen by others in a different form. Most of my Mum friends don’t even know I run-why should they? Its what I do as my hobby, the fact it dictates my everyday living is my choice, its an addiction which feeds the Mum side of me, enabling me to cope with the demands of kids with strength, power and courage.

So now my children are still wee, but we are coming out of the baby stage. Huge milestones like not needing a pram all the time, a highchair or endless food options makes life so much easier (and palming them off on grandparents way easier!). And in return I really feel like am finally back to my pre baby self both physically and mentally. Its been really hard. Ive fought, mainly against myself, to get out the door and get fit again. Feeling guilty and sad leaving them, but knowing if I don’t I will be dragged down with the endless chores and  the monotony of staying at home.

Running wise I think I am in the best shape I have perhaps ever been in. I am putting together some great training, but just don’t get the important rest I need to really make the training count. But, that’s my choice, I know in two years time the kids will be at school and I will get some more time to rest, to develop my personal training business and tidy the house! I am not a patient person, I want everything now, I want to be the best I can be now, but this form of me is the best I can be at the moment. As I tell the athletes I coach you can only be the best you can be at the moment in time and that is me now. Ive done every session I have set myself through a pretty rough few months with endless sick kids and no sleep. Ive eaten the best I could and been to bed ridiculously early.

So the start of 2014 season is upon me. This Saturday I race Country to Capital which I did last year as my first ultra; then I was still feeding the baby, had just done about 3 months running and was keen to just get round. My goals now couldn’t be more different. What a change a year makes. So, though I am impatient to get my life back. to achieve all my dreams, I know and am learning to wait a little longer, time flies and we will never get back these precious baby moments. This Saturday, whatever the result, I am a different person to the one who lined up last year. I am proud of what I have achieved and as always immensely grateful to those who support me.

Chase your dreams in 2014,
don’t accept anything but your best. Saviour every moment, even those which are hard, for its these that make us strong. Enjoy the good times, call friends, sit and listen to silence. I’m learning life is too short to wish away.