I have been thinking about how this year had been panning out so far. If I was being negative, I would say this year has been crap and that my life has taken a turn for the worse. However, I’m going to start thinking positive about not only what I have achieved but also how I have improved.
January saw me starting to have seizures after commencing medication for depression. This had a big impact on me as I lost my driving license and ultimately lost my job. We also started the year with a new challenge to run 12 half marathons in 12 months. I was unable to complete the first two races because I was basically too poorly. I managed 9.5km in the first race, and 14km in the second race, before having to drop out with seizures. This made me feel worse about my health.
Things started to turn around in March when we completed The Big Half in London. We came up with a race plan to run for 1 mile and then take a 90-second walking break. This appeared to work well, as I crossed the line hand-in-hand with my wife, beaming from ear to ear and getting that all important bling placed around my neck.
The next race in April was the Chester Half, we planned on running for 4KM this time, then taking a walking break. This didn’t really pan out as Gayle had a problem with her hip after a huge up-hill section at the start of the race. So we went back to the previous race plan of one mile run then take a break. We still managed to cross the finish line and I clocked up medal number two.
May took us to Liverpool for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon. Our plan was again to try for 4KM runs then a walking break. We did well, to begin with, even though there were lots of hills. The walking breaks got longer towards the end of the race, but we still managed to cross the finish line with a finish time slightly better than Chester, so that was an improvement.
In June, we visited the Greek island of Tinos. Once again we planned for the same 4KM run and walk break regime. We went into this race with our eyes open to the fact that there was a 5KM section that was steep uphill. I admit we had to walk this section, but on;y after we had managed to run for the first 6km without a break. Our time was a bit slower than Liverpool, but hey, there was the steep uphill section and it was incredibly warm. I will still take that as a win.
So, where do we go from here? We have the Southport Half Marathon this Sunday (1st July 2018), which is a pretty flat course, but it is predicted it to be quite warm. Our plan is to run 6KM blocks with a walking break in between. Hopefully, we should see an improvement in finishing times, but you never can tell what will happen on the day.
I have reduced my antidepressants and my seizures have got much better as a result of this, also I have another antidepressant to try that I have previous positive experience with, so I am feeling hopeful about the future.
Looking back at the first six months of this year, I can say that things seem better. Okay, I may not have a job at the moment, but worse things could happen and I just need to concentrate on getting myself well and not having seizures anymore.
Looking forward to the next six months, we have some exciting races coming up, including the Great North Run, our favourite race of the year, and also the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon. I am feeling engaged and ready to grab life by the balls and live each day to it’s best.
Let’s do this!!!