For years I have been aware of the Redway Runners. Firstly my brother Neil Goodwin joined and then my husband Paul and then my sister in law Charlotte. I never got it and thought I could never run. I mean this most sincerely. I hadn’t run since PE at school and I didn’t enjoy it then! Paul mentioned about starting running and I made an attempt early this year to do the couch to 5k. It was nothing short of disastrous and I ended up injured and gave up, reaffirming running was not for me.
Mother’s Day this year, we parked at the Pagoda car park and walked up the zig-zags. I was out of breath by the top. Paul said ‘I run up this on parkrun’ and I thought ‘how?!’.
In April I decided to give running a try and joined Martin P’s beginners group. It was his first time as a group lead so I think we were both a little apprehensive! I wanted to get fit and to do something for me. I was far from keen but knew I would give it my best shot. My one aim was to be able to run 5k without stopping and to be able to do Junior park run with my 4 year old son without struggling.
And so my journey began. I still didn’t enjoy it but what made it was the support from the buddy’s but the lovely people I met on my course. We were all in the same boat and there was no feeling or panic about failure. It was pure encouragement. I began to very slowly believe in myself and my confidence grew not only in my ability to run but my self confidence. I was always glad when a run had finished but the buzz I got when I looked at my Garmin was (and is) amazing. I did it! I’m doing it! Martin P was a real inspiration and support (and continues to be).
So moving on, I began to improve slowly and started on occasions to enjoy running. I signed up to my first 5k race – Emily’s star and loved seeing the green army turnout. Such a sense of belonging (although mental note to self, NEVER have 3 coffees prior to a run. Needless to say I had quite a good time!) I did some virtual races and started step up with the lovely Sophie which I still enjoy. First 10k was NSPCC and then on to Rockingham 10 miles. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, firstly it’s cold and secondly it’s 3 and a half laps round the track but I decided not to check my Garmin and just enjoy which I did.
After this, I had runners lethargy. I didn’t run for a couple of months for one reason or another and I got to the stage I felt I had left it too long to get back to. There was only one way to find out. I ran last Monday and managed 4 miles without stopping. I felt great. Since then I have run almost every other day and managed the first parkrun in ages. And so I’m happy to say my journey has resumed. I am looking forward to upping my personal game in 2018 and am looking forward to starting the course along with my best friend Tracey in January with Katie Tucker to increase my speed. In addition I have signed up to her 30 day challenge which I will embrace.
I have so much to thank the Redway Runners for and I’m proud to be running in my green t-shirt. Thank you to Martin L for managing the club so well and to the leaders and buddy’s who give up their time to help people like me.
Looking forward to seeing everyone in the new year.