We knew we were going to do this climb to raise money for eczema research because this was a subject very close to our hearts. Many of you know, our eldest has suffered dreadfully for the last three years in particular, leading to stays in hospital as the skin is a barrier to infection, so when your skin is broken all over, you are susceptible to strep or staph or any other infection. He's also been on skin and oral steroids repeatedly and has been on the receiving end of mickey taking at school and numerous curious stares or questions. All of which, we have tried to give him the tools to cope with and help educate others so that they will be more understanding. However, we feel that more can be done nationally and this is why we're climbing five peaks in the Lakes on Easter weekend. But not over the course of a weekend, no, in 12 hours! Yup, a little bit barking.
So, this all sounded good on paper last autumn when his eczema was at its worst and my mama bear instinct had gone into 'save the world from eczema' overdrive.
However, it wasn't anything we were particularly doing much about. Five peaks? How hard can that be eh?
So fast forward a couple of months. We've just had Christmas, well, that is me, my chins and I....the photos were less than flattering. I was at least a stone heavier, if not two if I'm truly honest, but that's more because I do have ridiculous ideals in my head and appreciate that I am 5ft 8 and have the build of someone who is always going to remain in the 10 - 12 category rather than 6 - 8. In fact, size 8 and you will probably be able to snap someone of my height and stature, so, as I said, ridiculous theory.
BUT, something was needing to be done. I wasn't going to get far up mountain peak 1 if I did armchair exercise with the remote control.
We joined the gym. Yup, he and me...
We started, intially, on a six week programme. Then I was lead astray!
I began to get high on the endorphins after doing a work out. 2 times a week became three! I watched my crazy pal, Soph, do three half marathons last year starting from the same couch I had been sitting on.
She fed me runner bumf and showed me elicit hang outs for 'mummy' runners.
I had been running on the treadmill, but not since 2010 had I set foot on the pavements.
So, one morning, I decided to see how a treadmill compared to the hills and fields around me.
Mwahahahahaha, how we laughed!
So, jumping through pot holes, dodging tractor pitting, rabbit holes, cars and wearing fluorescent orange in order to be seen, I began a slow but committed journey to
I saw sunrises that beat any extra half hour under the duvet. I bought kit that I never thought I would be seen dead in. I wore out a pair of shoes...yup, can you believe it!! Yay, Run Forrest Ruuuuun!!!
1 mile to begin with, then 2.5, then 3.5 and my first 5K in 6 years! Then an increase to 5 miles, then 6.5 (that's 10K) and another race on Sunday (10K), a half marathon in the wings for October and the VLM not seeming such a' mad thing that other people do' in my sights for 2016, a full stone lost, muscle gained and the ability to run/walk up a hill without dying. I'm not fast, but I'm reliant...like a robin ;-)
I think I'm nearly there for those peaks.
So, that's my training, the other half is in the gym twice a week and comes home very sweaty. He has also needed to tighten his belt, but he doesn't have the nutty runners bug like I do, which is probably good because at least one of us needs to remain sane and, if he ran too, who would cheer me on from the side lines on race days???
So BRING 'EM ON !! Is where I'm at now, feeling better than ever, stronger and more mentally prepared. 22km seems no where near as daunting as it did six months ago (although I am aware that 22km undulating is far superior to 22km on the flat!) my biggest fear now is the weather. If it rains and we get wet feet, the rest of the walk will be hell, despite having changes of socks. So, please pray or plead or whatever you do for some decent weather that isn't wet at least.
See you over the hill (s) !!