For those who don’t know me… and I guess for those who do, I never liked running! Yet I signed up to an Edurancelife marathon, which is an event that takes you through extreme conditions whilst running a long distance. If anyone had told me a few months ago that I would have run on this kind of event, I wouldn’t have believed it. So why did I do it?
Well, I did it for a variety of reasons:
1. To enlighten a point which is my truth: we are capable of so much more than we believe.
2. For a charity that is very dear to my heart: Pendleside Hospice.
3. In memory of my mum who has been an inspiration to me for her strength and resilience in life and in illness.
I trained hard for the marathon and I was incredibly very fortunate with my support network believing in me and pushing me to the fullest. In particular, my husband and my personal trainer were the ones that lived and breathed this journey, training with me to make this happen. Somehow, they knew I could do it before I realised it myself, which made me reflect very deeply: do we really know ourselves as well as think?
Having completed the event now, I sit here and somehow I am still in disbelief! It was so hard, actually a lot harder than I anticipated: it felt epic – I ran through hills, I ran up steps as much as I could and then I powered walked when my legs failed me. The weather conditions were horrendous: it was foggy, it was cold, it was wet and it was windy! Yet I had made a commitment to myself that I would complete this marathon, no matter how hard it was going to be or how long it was going to take me. My personal trainer kept telling me that we were in it to complete it, no matter how long it would take us. I ended up running for 7 and a half hours, the last hour by myself. It was that foggy that we took a wrong turn and extended the marathon by four miles. When one of the officials, at the last checkpoint, told me that it was 5 miles to go as opposed to 1, I cried. I was in so much pain – how could I possibly run for another hour? Yet I did it and I am here now, reflecting on my achievement and on why I put myself through it in the first place!
I got through it thanks to my physical training, sure – but, most importantly, thanks to the power of coaching and the insight I had into how much more we are all capable of as human beings. When we are in the moment, we just deal with what life throws at us, and then we suffer when we think back or when we project into the future what could possibly go wrong. When I was running those last 5 miles, I had so many thoughts running through my head – a bit like my life flashing in front of me, my brain frantically scanning life events to make connections and offering me memories of tough events that I had already overcome. I remember one specific thought, it was a compassionate one where I told myself: it’s only me and you now, let’s get through this last bit together. And so, through the thick fog, the deep mud and the heavy rain, I ran the last five miles, visualising that big hug from my husband awaiting at the finish line and all the virtual cheering from everyone else (COVID restrictions = no spectators)!
So many of my friends and family told me that they felt inspired by what I did and knowing this makes it all so worthwhile – I did feel inspired when I signed up and I feel inspired now. We only know what we have been capable of in the past, NOT what we will be capable of in the future. We cannot know ourselves 100% because we simply do not know 100% of what the future holds. Yet we make so many decisions about our life based on that map of ourselves that we have created, based on past experience.
I have run an endurance marathon, as an ordinary person who has never run a long distance before in her life. I am a life coach and I want to help people discover what they can achieve in life if they let themselves discover who they really are. My wish is to inspire children, adolescents, parents and adults to (re)discover themselves through a journey of self acceptance, love and appreciation. I feel so much stronger now for having connected with my truth and myself and I really want to share this with others through coaching.
Thank you for all the love and support from all my dear ones – Team No Limits has raised more than £1200 for Pendleside Hospice.
Thank you to the coaching world for having opened up my mind about the beauty of the unknown and self belief.
Thank you to you, reading my story today. I hope we will connect soon and share some of this journey together.