Over the past few months I have shared an occasional photo either before or after I've been running (yes, I've become one of those people). Recently I feel as though I'm mentioning my "Couch To 5K" (C25K) running group a lot but it's changed the way I think about my own health and fitness. I joined a community Group Run programme in Blackburn not long after I started my journey with Slimming World as part of my conscious effort to shed some pounds and ultimately become more active.
To be perfectly honest with you, I've never been a "runner". I was always a sprinter. Even the warm-up laps at the track used to knacker me out at training sessions. And after I had my accident, I didn't really run any more...
I find it hard to explain in words what the Blackburn Group Run C25K programme is like. I tried to complete the process on my own on a couple of occasions but always gave up by week two. The community spirit and the encouragement from others is the main reason it's such a success. I completed my own 9-week C25K programme in August last year. I felt a huge sense of achievement because in week one I couldn't run for sixty seconds without thinking my heart was going to jump out of my chest and collapsing in a puddle of my own sweat after each session. Afterwards, I decided to 'pay back' by volunteering to lead one of the small groups in the next (and subsequent) programmes.
One of my 'Things To Achieve In 2015' is to complete a 5K run in 30 minutes. At the moment I'm not sure that's possible BUT on Saturday, I managed to run a personal best. It's a small achievement; the bigger achievement is seeing many of the people I've been mentoring through the C25K programme over the past 8 weeks run better and faster than me. I worry that I'm holding them back - that they should be in a group that will motivate them to run faster and stronger. They have that option but they keep coming back.
(click 'em to big 'em)
The main thing is that I am seeing the world through new eyes; I snap a quick pic of my favourite tree on the park coated in fog, a glorious sunset as I join my running group in the park in the evening, frost on the ground on an early Saturday morning, an amazing moon-and-cloudscape (never captured on camera - but I will one day). And, of course, the obligatory picture of my trainers before I set off - the trainers that I adore seeing filthy and lived in rather than in pristine condition because they are being used for their purpose.
PS... I toyed with sharing this last picture but I'm very proud of it. You may have noticed that I hardly ever share photos of myself but six months or so down the line, I'm starting to see the changes that I wanted in my body shape. There's still a way to go but there's shape and there's tone and it's a new me.
For more Health & Fitness pictures and stories hop, skip and jump
your way over to The Gallery on Tara's blog - Sticky Fingers