Keep On Running
It has been a while since my last blog with the diary being so busy but I was so inspired by a recent event that I had find a window to put fingers to keyboard to share it with you all.
The London Marathon 2017.
Each year I make a point of watching at least the start of this inspiring race. I love to see the comradeship between entrants and hear the thousands of reasons why people dedicate months of hard work in training to aim to finish the 26 mile course, usually for fundraising for numerous charities. There is also a silent wish that maybe, just maybe I could take up the challenge too one of these years.
Those five hours in front of the television with an endless supply of tea are usually an emotional rollercoaster for me and this year was no exception as I, moved to tears, watched one runner almost reach the finish line only to come to a virtual stop. His legs had seized and his energy was gone.
Sensing his challenges, a fellow competitor began to run beside him and cheer him on to no avail until a second runner joined them. Between them they helped him over the finish line. These two huge – hearted entrants were competing for their personal best which was most likely not achieved by supporting the runner in trouble. They compromised their race goals rather than leave someone with the disappointment of coming so close to completion and not finishing at all. An ultimate act of human kindness.
The two runners achieved their personal best that day not by timing, but by caring enough to recognise and support someone else’s need to achieve their own goal.
There were many personal stories to touch the soul and warm the heart.
The runners for ‘Heads Together’ Charity highlighted mental illness to name but a few and reflected so much selfless giving for those in life that need help and support .The amazing Elite Wheelchair competitors and so many others, too many to mention, unfolded before us as the miles passed by.
But my other reason for watching this year was one closer to home.
In 2016 my Daughter – In – Law Nikki applied and was accepted for the 2017 London Marathon.
With her only real experience of distance running being ‘Couch to 5K’ the year previously, for Nikki like many others, this was a huge task to undertake.
With a full work schedule and then an injury which temporarily halted her training Nikki was focused to succeed fuelled by her amazing capacity to achieve her own personal goals and determination to raise £2000 for Sue Ryder in memory of her Father – In – Law who had passed to Spirit with cancer. Her campaign was brilliantly titled ‘For Pete’s Sake’
The Marathon for Nikki was amongst other things an experience in facing personal fears. Having never been to London away from the secluded rural village where she lives with her family and with no experience of transporting around this beautiful but immense city, it was quite an adventure and at the start line she had only been able to train to run just under half of the race.
As the hours went by I tracked Nikki’s progress on the phone App while cheering her on from the sofa and was overcome with complete pride, respect and admiration as the notification arrived that she had completed the course in just over 7 hours having part walked and part run the route.
The photographs of Nikki’s beaming face were a fabulous record of months of sheer effort, hard work and personal achievement, as they were for so many others.
Six days after the London Marathon officially finished it was reported that a police officer had completed the course on his hands and knees dressed as a gorilla raising £26,000 for charity!
Each year, The London Marathon reminds me of how wonderful people are.
It reminds me that there are amazing individuals who walk amongst us every day, unsung heroes who quietly get on with life with incredible strength and determination, compassion and love.
It reminds me that no matter where we are in life or whatever we may need there is someone who cares, who will sacrifice themselves to help in whichever way they can even over the finishing line wherever that line may be.
It reminds me that in this world of many changes people will still move mountains to love and care, unafraid of the consequences of doing so.
Who knows if one year I may make it to the start line but if I don’t I will continue to run my own London Marathon in the way I live my life with the hope of making a difference as every single one of the 40,000 runners did in April 2017, have done in previous years, and will no doubt do so again in the years to come.
Love Donna x