In January, my almost 80 year old Nan was diagnosed with bowel and stomach cancer.
I was facebook stalking the RMA group – and I was always inspired with the mummies and how they were achieving these amazing results, looking healthy, happy and fit all from running.
This was the same time I decided I needed to start making the most of my health. I have no excuse not to be living a healthy life, not only for me, but for also my family. This is when I made the decision to go from a couch potato to start training for the Gold Coast Half Marathon. I was inspired by my Nan’s strength to fundraise and raise awareness for the Cancer Council QLD.
I have been inspired, motivated, encouraged and always get a swift kick up the backside whenever I need it from the local RMA ladies who are also training with me for the Gold Coast Half Marathon. On the 7th of Feb things started to get serious when I met my running buddy for the first time,Kylie. I struggled to even run for even 3 minutes straight. We ran for 3km in total, I wanted to die. I felt like I was suffocating and couldn’t believe how hard my body had to work to even run for 3 minutes.
Weeks later I started to get the running bug, meeting small milestones along the way. Our running group started to get bigger and I achieved my first 1km straight, then my first 5km straight. Seeing my time getting better and better. Every run I was getting more and more pumped.
Overwhelmed with emotions, I needed to pop my first run cherry, and about 6 weeks ago my running girls encouraged me to sign up for The Twilight Running Festival, a 10km run. Since then I haven’t looked back.
Last Tuesday morning (5 days out from Twilight), my Nan had passed away with terminal cancer. I was heartbroken. Using my grieving, instead of grabbing chocolate, alcohol and ice cream like I would previously of done, I used my afternoon run sessions with the local RMA’s and they helped to remind me that the Twilight was my time to shine for my Nan.
Arriving, overwhelmed with emotions, I made my way to the RMA tent where my local RMA’s who I have developed an amazing bond with were there welcoming me with their arms open, I officially felt like a RMA!
My beautiful RMA friend Kylie was my rock for the run. She ran by my side the whole event. As I have only been running since 7th of February, mentally I wasn’t there for the Twilight, however she kept me focused, reminded me how much I want to achieve this, and not to stop otherwise my legs will hurt even more. The atmosphere is something different. I loved seeing the locals out on the streets having BBQ’s, drinking beer and cheering everyone on. Everytime I saw the local scout groups all I could think was about my kids, and how proud they would be of me, and then I got a spring in my step.
I ran the whole 10km straight in 1hr 19min, with a few small stops at the water stations. By the 8km mark my legs wanted to start failing, but then I took a moment, looked into the sky and knew my Nan was by my side, and my whole body got a buzz and I just wanted to sprint.
Passing the RMAs and cheering each other on is the most amazing feeling ever. Words cant explain how being in a group can introduce yourself to the most beautiful people, who don’t stop encouraging yourself to push harder and be a better runner.
I could not be more proud of my first event, I am also very grateful for the RMA community. Without it I still would be sitting on that couch.
I am looking forward to continuing my running journey towards the Gold Coast Half Marathon. I am sharing my running journey on my instagram @run4cancer_gcam.