This time next week I will likely be feeling rather nervous and scoffing down some porridge, in preparation for running the Bupa Great Manchester Run. Yes, it's really only one week away now!
I signed up for it last October so for it to be finally be this close to really happening seems a bit surreal.
I started training in January as some of you will remember and despite being deeply enthusiastic and having a training plan and everything I ran into trouble early on with blinding knee pain that turned out to be patellofemoral disorder.
I didn't run for 6 weeks while my body healed, which solved the knee pain but clearly did nothing for improving my fitness or increasing the distance I can run. Then in March I started over, this time not following a training plan as such, just aiming to run 3 times a week, starting out slow and increasing my distance as and when I felt able.
It's worked out quite well as my average runs have increased from 3.5 to 4.5 then 5.5. then 6 and then 7.5k. At which point I have hit my limit.
At my physio assessment last month I was told I would reach a ceiling, and maybe it would be at around 10k, and unlike other people who can persevere, step it up a notch and push through their ceilings, my ceiling will stay firmly in place, and I may attempt to smash it and succeed but for me and my knees it will come at a price, and that will be pain and injury (neither of which I'm a fan of, it turns out!)
So with one week to go it looks very likely I will be walking at least part of the way round. Which is fine. I was never so ambitious as to set myself a goal or a time I'd like to beat, I only ever said I wanted to complete it, and that ideally I would have liked to have been able to run all the way around.
For me though, the goal was always just the run itself. I've never done anything like it before in my life, and as I'm using it as an opportunity to raise funds for a very good cause it's one of those instances where it really is the taking part that counts.
So with a week to go I am still hoping to inspire people, either to take part themselves (if I can do it, honestly, pretty much anyone can!) or to do something else, equally out of character that they've always secretly fancied having a go at.
OR if neither of those appeals or seems achievable then sponsor me in my efforts and help me raise money for Findlay and Iona.
Anyone who would like to sponsor me can visit my Just Giving page, or just text REBX99 to 70070 along with the amount they'd like to give e.g. £1, £2, £5 etc or if you're seriously technologically challenged (which seems unlikely given you're reading my blog!) then get in touch and I can put your details down on my Ye Olde Fashioned Sponsorship Form and we'll figure out how you can pay once I've actually completed my end of the bargain! ;)
If you're unable to donate then GOOD LUCK messages are also massively appreciated (and much-needed!) along with any other words of encouragement or inspirational stories.
Thank you :D