Marathon Diaries: Training for The London Marathon 2019

As a child, I remember watching The London Marathon on TV and thinking one day, I’m going to do that. 

I don’t know about you, but I say that a lot. Everyone has a bucket list, and despite ever-growing, mine still has plenty of unticked boxes!

So three years ago, without any real thought other than the fact that I have always wanted to do it, I decided to apply for The London Marathon ballot. I truly underestimated how popular the event is, and how difficult it is to be offered a spot, and was disappointed when I was unsuccessful.

I tried again the following year, but was also unsuccessful.

Automatically, I applied again this year, not really thinking much of it. I figured I’d just keep applying until I eventually got a place, estimating that it might take another few years before I got lucky. I didn’t make a note of when the ballot results were being released, and (to be honest) completely forgot about it.

So when I got an email earlier this week, congratulating me on my successful entry, it caught me off guard. I went from dubious, to elated, to fearful in the space of 30 seconds; I’m actually going to run The London Marathon. 26.2 miles. Shit! 

I’m putting it out there right now – I am NOT a runner. I’m not even particularly fit. Despite going over a year without smoking, I’ve recently (foolishly) picked up the habit again. Despite having a gym membership and booking 3-5 classes each week with good intentions, I tend to cancel the majority of them and am lucky if I go once or twice. And despite spending hours trawling the internet for healthy recipes, I still cover my turkey dinosaurs and pasta with an endless amount of grated cheese.

But if I am going to run a marathon, I need to change that. This is a bucket-list opportunity, and I don’t want to half-ass it

I NEED to train. Those who know me know I don’t like to do things by halves, so if I’m doing this I’m doing it properly. This challenge will be both physically and mentally demanding, and I need to take it seriously.

That’s why I’m going to keep a regular diary, so I can hold myself accountable and monitor my progress. My training will begin in November. I will follow the Run/Walk Training Programme for 6 weeks, followed by the 2019 Training Plan for 16 weeks.

You can follow my updates here: dickensdoesbooks.com/tag/marathon-diaries

It’s not all about me…

I want to use this opportunity to support those less fortunate than myself. There are many worthy causes that I believe in, but after much deliberation I have decided to support a small homeless charity in London, called Shelter from the Storm.

Homelessness is something that I encounter more often now that I work in London, and it’s something that really distresses me. I buy coffee and food where I can but, although appreciated, I know it doesn’t really do much to help their situation in the grand scheme of things.

Shelter from the Storm is a small charity compared to the likes of Shelter and Crisis. But they make a real difference on the ‘front-line’ by providing free emergency shelter including a bed, dinner and breakfast for those facing a night on the streets.

Shelter from the Storm is in the process of building a new purpose-built shelter, all funded by donations, after the lease expired in their last location. This will be purpose built, meaning that it has been designed with the needs of homeless people at its core, with multiple facilities including dorms, a kitchen, showers and loos, a counselling room, IT facilities, a lounge area and dining area.

Please show your support visiting my fundraising page. Any donation big or small would be truly appreciated (and make me run harder!)

 

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