I began training for the Great North Run earlier this year. It took me a long time to build up to actually running, and it wasn't until my grandad's birthday that I finally braved it - but I haven't looked back since! I'm surprised by how addictive running can be, and run days have slowly become my favourite. I absolutely love doing Little Miss Delicious full time and wouldn't change that for the world, but self employment means I'm always busy. I work at least 18 hours a day, my phone and laptop are constantly full of new notifications, and I don't think I've had an empty to do list since 2009! So it's nice to switch off for an hour or so every other day and just have some time to myself. And after a run, I always come back with a clear head and more motivated than before, ready to take on anything!
Running isn't something I ever, ever thought I'd enjoy. A year ago it'd be a task just getting me to run to the fridge, but after losing my grandad I found it very difficult to cope with the grief, and running became my outlet for that. When I signed up for the Great North Run I don't think I really considered how long 13.1 miles actually is, but I just wanted to do something in his memory and I'm so glad I did. It's become my way of remembering him, as well as coping with life without him there, and it's an amazing feeling knowing the money I'm raising for The Brain Tumour Charity might help other families that go through what we did.
Last Saturday marked a year since he passed away, so it was a very difficult day. I spent the first 4 hours refusing to get out of bed, but I know he'd hate to see me like that so I decided to turn it into something positive, and ran my first 10 miles \ 16 k. The furthest I'd done before that was 8.45 miles, and considering back in April 2 miles was a feat, I've definitely come a long way!
I felt so lethargic so made my plan to do the run public - posting on the Little Miss Delicious Facebook page about it, and making it into a 'guess my time' competition to try and increase my fundraising efforts, while making sure I couldn't back out of it! And I'm so glad I didn't.
It was unbelievably cathartic, and helped my clear my head of all negativity. It's definitely a big milestone in my training, and for the first time I actually feel confident about doing the Great North Run. I'd even go so far as to say I'm looking forward to it - although I'm probably going to regret saying that in a few weeks time when I actually do it!
I never thought running would help me deal with a loss, but now I couldn't imagine my life without it.
If you'd like to sponsor me or read more about what The Brain Tumour Charity do, you can do so on my Just Giving page, and I'm also doing a raffle with 100% of the proceeds going to charity - tickets are only £2 and are available to purchase from littlemissdelicious.com/charityraffle.html.