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Here's my story back to Jogging after almost 2 decades!

I moved from London to Australia in Sept 2018 and my health was poor. I did not have anything specific that I knew of, I was just exhausted, in pain and constantly getting sick. I had a 10-month-old and a 4-year-old and I had not slept in almost 5-years. I had not been to the Dr for some time as my health was not a priority for me. Keeping my babies alive was my priority and I didn’t exactly have a supportive team of people around me, concerned about my overall well-being. My well-being was largely ignored by my family as well as myself. 

After many visits to many Drs and many scans and blood tests I still did not have a formal diagnosis however my Thyroid and Liver were not functioning well and I had large painful Breast Cysts. The Cysts were drained, all kinds of Cancers were tested for and I was left feeling even more miserable. My requests for prescription strength pain killers and sleeping tablets was met with disdain from my GP. I refused a prescription for anti-depressants after googling their side-affects.

One day I took my daughter to a Salt Room to try and help her snoring. In this room I read some Well-being Magazines. I had not read any well-being or glossy magazines in years. A few articles in these magazines sparked some ideas and I decided to start implementing a few stress reduction techniques at home to help me sleep. I also decided to tell my employers that I was “NOT Well” and would not be able to return to work full-time when my maternity leave ended. I made the decision that I would work part-time and spend 12-months trying to “Get Well”. I had no idea where that would take me but I gave myself “permission” to try and be healthy instead of exhausted, sick and tired.

At this time, I also decided to start doing some exercise and educate myself more about nutrition. I discovered near my home a Parkrun group on a Saturday morning and I turned up one morning at 7:00am after 3-hours sleep with a cup of coffee in my hand declaring to anyone near me that I was just walking… If I had to carry a cup of coffee than there was no pressure for me to perform…

Fast forward 2.5-years later. I now have 47 #parkruns in my middle-aged legs and I’m now consistently running sub-26minutes. 

When I started more than 2-years ago my goal was just to drag my weary, aching, overweight, sleep-deprived butt out of bed and turn up! Great goal!!

After a few weeks of walking 5kms, I decided to try Jog a bit!! It hurt... but I kept going!

After a few months I decided if I could run the whole 5kms without stopping that would be a good achievement... and I did!

Suddenly I found myself wanting to run sub-30mins and feeling frustrated I could not crack it! Then something miraculous happened - I did a couple of extra runs in the week and presto I started running sub-28mins. Freaking awesome!

By the end of Year 1 @Aplins Weir Parkrun I decided to try get a sub-27minute PB! I smashed it - wholly crap who is this lady?!? Parkrun year 2 was somewhat interrupted by Covid but I kept running and increased my distances and enjoyed setting new goals based on distance not time!

I’m now a few months into Parkrun Year 3! My goal is to consistently run as close to 25minutes as I can!! I set a new PB in January 2021 of 25:05 and even though I’ve jumped up an age group 45-49 I’m still in the top 25 runners most weeks! I’m only racing myself... my goal is to keep consistently showing up! Having fun and keep dragging my tired, middle-aged butt (which is much smaller by the way) out of bed!

My girls are proud of Mummy’s running club on Saturday morning when I disappear for 30-minutes to connect with other adults and enjoy an activity just for myself.

This is just one of many things I did to improve my health and wellbeing and I know that when I eat well (mostly plants), stretch daily, and have an Epsom salt bath if I feel achy, I run so much easier and quicker!

The other things I do for my health and well-being are:

• Stress Management; Mindfulness and Meditation Practice and Breathing exercises.

• Sleep; I prioritise sleep over TV or socialising and I have my own bed-time routine.

• Food; I ensure that I eat The Rainbow and focus on nutrient dense food over processed food.

• Stretching; I stretch daily. 20minutes before bed as well as before and after exercise.

• Listening to my body; my body is an intuitive machine that is constantly sending me messages. I listen to it. I thank it, I care for it and I move it so that all the toxins that build up have the best chance of being removed.

When I started Jogging my goal was NOT to lose weight, run a marathon or impress anyone. My goal was to become healthy. I am 20kgs lighter and I am extremely healthy, and if I want to run a marathon at 45-years of age I know I can.

Here is my advice to anyone; we can all do little things, and big things to improve our health. The first goal should always be - Just turn Up! The rest will follow.


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