Sunday, 22 September 2013

You can do anything with friends by your side

Hello!  So you know that half marathon I made a huge deal about?  And the 2nd one?  Well, I
did another one!  My third in 7 weeks!  Last night :)  It went well :)  It was the Twilight Bay Run Half Marathon - starting at 5pm along the bay, it was a nice temperature and there was no blaring sun to deal with.  I was pretty nervous leading up to it but I found a trick to fix that.  If you're ever driving towards a running event and are stressing, start to wonder if you turned the stove off at home - I guarantee you will stop stressing about the run and start stressing about the stove!  It was awful.  On a positive note, I didn't leave it on and I still had an apartment to come home to.  However it distracted and stressed me out to no end, something I didn't need!

Apart from feeling anxious that my house was burning down, the whole run was great.  I just did it at my own pace - my own race.  As always my music was my best friend - I even made a "Kate's 3rd Half Marathon playlist"! :)  I was feeling fine throughout - there was only slight pain and I just powered through.  I ran past the new bride and groom doing a photoshoot in the middle of the road :)  I ran past the girl getting treated by medics.  I ran past her again and an ambulance had arrived. :(  I ran through the point where my face starts
Picking up my bib the day before
getting salty (weirdest thing).  I ran through m
y sock starting to rub on my ankle but I didn't want to stop running so I just put up with it.  The blood that soaked my sock and shoe as a result was worth it.  I just kept running and was ok.  I was especially proud that I didn't even need to send any SOS SMS's or check Facebook for support.  I was doing ok :)


There's always a Then.

At about the 18km mark, I started stressing out.  I was one of the last people left on the course.  There was one girl, a group of 3 friends, and me.  I think we were it.  The girl and the group of friends kept walk/run/walk/run.  Which is fine, I don't care what others do.  But what bothered me was they kept looking back to, I can only assume, see where I was at.  As soon as I'd overtake them, they'd start running again to
Lining up to start
overtake me.  I HATE THIS.  It stresses me out so much!  I race myself in events, no-one else!  I stay at the same pace throughout, just run and try and focus.  If I wanted to be a pace runner then I would become one officially.  It takes enough out of me to run half marathons, I don't need or want people playing cat and mouse with me on course!  I get really stressed out and it makes me anxious.

Aside from that, was my biggest upset.  I was almost coming last.  Now I know that many of you reading this, especially my big brother Greg will be jumping up and down around about now but hear me out.  I've been thinking heaps about this and I think I've been describing it wrong.  I know that running a half marathon is incredible.  I don't downgrade the biggest dream I have had at all.  It is huge.  And I ran 3 of them in 7 weeks.  That's even more huge.  For someone who never exercised a year ago,
One thing I wrote on my arm
that's even more huge.  I know it doesn't matter where you come.  You only ever race against yourself, I know that.  I'm giving it a go, etc. etc.  I know that.  Someone has to come last, it doesn't matter, blah blah blah.  I agree.  I get all that.  You won't believe me but I actually don't have an issue with coming last.  Not in the slightest.  I'd quite happily come last at every event.

The other thing I wrote
What my issue is, is coming last again.  I'm not going to bore you with re-telling my stories from yonder year.  I came absolutely last a few times, in huge, huge events.  My upset lies with it happening again.  It's pyschological, I guess.  It's just one of those 'things' I have.  I have no qualms about coming even second last.  None at all.  And I would be the first person to sincerely congratulate someone else coming last.  Even myself!  I don't have an issue with being the last person, I just get upset with the embarrassment because it's like a repeat of awful events.

Does this even make sense?  Probably not.  I guess what I mean is, it's the memory of old awful events that upset me, rather than the act itself.  Think of it like how a middle aged man may shudder when he's on a baseball field, because it reminds him of when he used to get
picked last for teams as a kid.  It's ok now, he doesn't have to worry, he's now the baseball coach!  But he still remembers how awful it felt when he was a kid.  That's how I feel.  I don't want people to think I have an issue with being last - it's just the memory of some awful events that I have an issue with.  If i'm still not explaining it well, then just trust me, I get really upset about coming last.  Second last is fine.  I can't help it.

So I'm at the 18km mark and I realised this had happened.  I knew it would - but up to this
point I was trying to do the grown up thing of not caring.  But it's easy to think that until it actually happens.  I was fine - but as the course grew more and more empty, I started getting upset.  I checked my phone at about 19km and noticed that Greg and another friend Tracey had texted me.  Both sent beautiful messages that pepped me up.  I could see fireworks in the distance, I was finishing off a half marathon (!), there was a beautiful breeze coming from the water, I had friends supporting me....but the last thing was almost happening again. :(  Flashback City.

I SMS'd back some sad messages about coming 'almost last'.  I tried my hardest to focus but it's the embarrassment.  You try running against crowds of people leaving an event, watching the lone runner run towards the Finish banner.  There was a medic cyclist circling me and if he got any closer I was going to ask him to go away because it was drawing more attention to me and upsetting me even more.  I hate that.  But I just kept going.  There were no tears, just grit in my legs and focus on my face.
That moment

"Don't worry...don't worry...don't worry..." was going through my head.  I was trying to focus.  I was almost there.  I was willing the girl and the friends group to just let me stay in front.  They had support - just let me be second last, not very last.  Please.

Then, about 300m before the Finish banner, this amazing thing happened that I will never forget.  Tracey, who had finished her own 5km event hours earlier (while jet lagged mind you!) appeared and started running alongside me.  Instantly I was ok.  I suddenly couldn't care less if the girl or friends overtook me again.  Because now I wasn't alone.  Tracey was beside me. 
These girls <3
It was one of the most special moments I have ever experienced.

100m on, other friends, Kylie and Rina, who were screaming cheers for me, also joined us, and they ran alongside me as well.  All of my fears dissipated.  All I could feel was love and all I could see was the Finish banner.  I ran through with a fist pump jump for the cameras.  

Done :)

I managed to walk a few metres to get my
Fist pump and a half!!
medal (the most important part), but that was it.  I allowed my legs to seize and I fell to the ground before I made it to the recovery tent.  I just had my recovery a little earlier than they had set up :)  The girls, including Mel and Courtney, other friends who had waited around for hours and who had driven large distances to cheer me on, went and got the recovery stuff for
Me with the gorgeous Mel
me and brought it over to me - they fed me and handed me water :)  I thanked Tracey and she simply said she knew about my previous events and imagined how I was feeling.  Kylie put my medal around my neck for me.  Just incredible support.  3 of them even pulled me off the ground and held me up while another stretched me.  As in, physically moved my legs for me, to stretch me out.  Can you see why I'm overwhelmed? :)

I made it under the cut off time and I wasn't last.  Not that I cared any more anyway :)  That's what it's all about.  They say pain is temporary but stories last forever.  This is always true for me.  And now also, embarrassment is temporary but friendships last forever. :)

Other similar stories from the last few weeks are two friends who helped make some of my goals a reality!  Ange and Alana - let's just call them my A Team :)

My goal for Week 5 was called Kate Jordan - it was to play basketball again.  Not necessarily ongoing in an official team, but just like I used to 'play' it.  Across the road from my hotel after
Reactivating my basketball love
work with my work mates - such special memories for me.  I had this down as a goal and of course, come Week 5 had done nothing about organising it.  Take a step forward awesome Miss Ange, one of my friends who works around the corner from me.  She knew about this goal - she went out and bought a basketball, sourced a court, sent me an invite on an afternoon I was free, and we went and did it!  I had this amazing feeling come over me as I walked towards her - the court was across the road from work - it was like the old days - the sun going down and everything.  Just amazing and we shot hoops and mucked around for over an hour.  Can't wait to do this again :)

Thanks Angie
Another goal for this round was titled "1, 2, 3, 4, Do It Just A Little More."  It was to do the Kokoda track loop at Brisbane's Mt Coot-tha, 4x in a row.  It's a 5km loop with 1km of that being an insane, steep gradient.  At some points you sometimes have to use your hands and crawl up bits - I did a few Tarzan Jane movements of grabbing onto trees as well.  It's so bloody steep.  Everyone we've ever met on the track are training for the real Kokoda.  They always ask why we're there - we always look at each other and say "umm, just for fun/fitness/because we can." LOL nutters!

Anyway my gorgeous friend Alana remembered I had this goal and while my mind had been elsewhere in the past few weeks, she encouraged me, we made a date, and set out to do it: 5:30am, just Alana, me, and the mountain.  It took us about 7 hours, we trekked 20km and we burnt just under 3000 calories in the process.  SSS eat your heart out.  Each time we reached the top, we'd stop to eat and skull some water
The beautiful Alana - 4 x Kokoda baby!! (Yes, I broke my glasses in the process!)
before going on the next loop.  It was hard.  By the end we were both carrying sticks to help us walk.  But we did it, and felt amazing after - I am so proud of both of us.

Onto the next adventure soon, but I just wanted to share these little stories with you.  I am so thankful to be surrounded by friends like these. #luckiestgirlintheworld

On my way to the Twilight half

Coolest wedding photos ever!

(Trying to) sprint towards the end - thank you for this photo Court

'Finished' - that's all I wanted
My medal!

My own little recovery station :)

Greg and Ruth sent me this before the run - loved it

I heart basketball

1 Kokoda lap

2 Kokoda laps!

3 Kokoda laps!  (And 4 is above!)

Just call me Jane (as in Tarzan)

How I went from a Double G non runner to a half marathoner!

I mentioned that some friends and I had made a crazy dream to run a marathon?  Well, Greg, Ruth and I have a Facebook page so that people can follow our journey.  We're writing short ;) bios about ourselves and today was my turn, so I thought I'd share what I wrote on my blog.  If you read my blog you probably know my story anyway, but here it is.  This is my running bio, in brief. :)
Kate's running bio
How did I come about making this crazy dream? The girl who in June last year could only run for 200 metres? Who now talks about completed half marathons in plural?

In June last year I found myself at 141kg. To explain how I got to that weight would need a whole other long post - but we all have a history and mine saw me getting to that weight. Morbidly obese and essentially hiding from life. I decided to lose weight (for the 461st time) and joined Michelle Bridges 12WBT. That’s all I planned on doing – just losing weight. I didn’t realise how much of my life would change in the process.

I did my first fitness test where we had to do a 1km time trial. I waited till about 10pm when the streets were dark
How I went from a Double G non runner to a half marathoner!
and quiet so that no-one would see me, and I headed out. I managed to run 200m before feeling like my throat was going to seize up and I’d collapse.

A few days later, I sat in my car, in the rain, staring at the boot camp across the park – the boot camp I was trying to get the courage to join. I was petrified. I was not one who exercised. At all. I was in the ‘Under 13’s and Under 14’s Butterflies’ netball teams when I was a kid. Umm, and that was it. I had never really exercised before. I was the girl who would eat M&M’s while walking defiantly at the back of my schools cross country only because I was forced to participate. I didn’t do anything. wouldn’t (and couldn’t!) even run for a train.

I somehow made it out of the car that day and did my first boot camp. I cried a bit but I did it. And the next week, I went back, and I did it again. And again. I slowly started to introduce more exercise. I kept up my 1km time trials and within a couple of months, after losing some weight and increasing my fitness a little bit, I discovered I could run the whole 1km without stopping!

I signed up for my first official fun run, the 5km Bridge to Brisbane. My goal was to finish it, and if I felt ok, to try and run a little bit. If I could do this, it would be the first time I would be running in public. The day before, a friend, Wendy, said to me “if you can run 1km, you can run 2km”. I thought it was a sweet sentiment and that was it. But I remembered it.

At the Start line, I thought I’d just give it a go and try and run. I started, and I discovered I was ok. No-one was staring at me...I blended in as much as the other thousands of runners. As I approached the 1km mark, I remembered what Wendy had said. I started to think about testing her theory, and about how cool it would be, if I could tell her later that I did in fact run 2km without stopping? I was feeling I kept going. Already I had ‘beat’ my best distance, so I was on Cloud 9. But then the funniest thing happened. I was already approaching the 2km mark, and I was still feeling ok. I started dreaming bigger. What on, what if...if I can run 2km, maybe I could run 3km? I kept going.... You get the picture. That continued and I ended up running the entire 5km that day. I realised what incredible things your body can do, if you just start to imagine.

Soon after that, continuing to lose weight and increase my fitness, I imagined really big. I imagined running a half marathon. How amazing would that be? I settled on a goal of the Gold Coast Half Marathon 2013 and set out to make it a reality.

Then literally about 2 weeks later, I had an accident on the infamous princess bushwalk, and badly sprained my ankle. For the following two months, I was on crutches and in a moon boot. Not the best timing but I refused to let it stop my running goals. I couldn’t run, but I could do other stuff. I’d turn up to boot camp with crutches and just do upper body exercises. In those 2 months I increased my fitness so much, that a week after recovering, I went and ran 11km non stop, just like that. After not running in 2 months.

That was January – since then I just kept going. I increased my boot camps, I did a few triathlons, I tried pole dancing, climbed mountains, did Spartan, all different stuff – I did as much as I could. The other stuff helped my fitness but nothing gave me ‘that feeling’ like running did. Running made me feel alive. I entered every running event that I could – always with the half marathon goal in mind. In June I completed the 14km City 2 South. Around this point I delayed my half goal – I changed it to the Brisbane Marathon Festival in August. I felt I needed a bit more time, and the Gold Coast had a strict 3 hour cut off time that I was worrying about meeting. One thing I have learnt, is to be flexible with your goals. So I had 4 more weeks up my sleeve. I did the 10km Jetty 2 Jetty in July, got to the finish line and kept running through it for another 6km. Just because I wanted to let myself do a 16km run before tackling the half. I made it, and it gave me the confidence to know I would really be ok with the 21.1km.

Along came the 4th August, and, 14 months after I started running, and 40kg down, I went and I did it. I ran 21.1km without stopping. It is the biggest thing I have ever done in my life. I realised why I was doing it. Yeah, I loved running, the feeling it gave me and the fitness it allowed me to have. But the reason I did the half? It’s because I never imagined I could. When you’re 141kg you don’t imagine things like this. Not seriously, anyway. But this is a dream – a huge, scary, seemingly out of reach crazy goal I made myself. And I did it. I worked so hard for over a year and broke down my goal into achievable chunks. I allowed myself to keep going after stuffing up along the way. It wasn’t all smooth sailing. The sprained ankle was the very least of my worries at some points. Paralleled with this journey were many personal hurdles – some very dark. But you’ve just gotta keep going.

Since my first half marathon, I have completed 2 more. 3 halfs in 7 weeks – it’s craziness at its most rewarding. The marathon dream is something I dabbled with in my mind but wouldn’t allow myself to seriously consider until after my first half. Of course, as soon as I did it, running a full marathon became the new dream. I am so lucky I met Ruth and Greg along the way and that they have crazy dreams just like me. Both of them have been by my side through so much – I call them my sister and brother and I can’t imagine sharing the marathon dream with anyone else. And to top it off, to have so many of our friends pledging to run at the Gold Coast next year in all different distances too? This makes me even more excited about it. The Gold Coast is not going to know what hit it come July!

This is a video I made a couple of weeks ago that shows you my running story. It’s basically this bio, in pictures
I encourage each of you to aim – whether it be the Gold Coast, or your own personal running, walking, climbing etc. goal – whatever it is, aim big. You never know what you might be capable of, if you only let yourself imagine it. You can currently be at any point and still get to any point. That 141kg, out of breath girl from June last year, she never thought she’d be able to run a half...until she imagined it.

Love Kate xo

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

That moment when you share your story with the world

That moment when you sit at your laptop for an hour not sure what to write.  Because of that moment when you have the strangest 24 hours.  I have no idea where to start!  

So my Week 2 goal that I set myself was called "Two worlds combine".  Essentially my goal was, to an extent, to bridge the gap between Coco Girl and Kate.  I keep them very separate.  Only a very small handful of friends outside of 12WBT land have the link, or even know about this blog.  My 64000 odd views of this blog up to yesterday have all been from strangers or people I have met through 12WBT.  And likewise, my personal Facebook page has anything but weight loss stuff.  I only very recently started accepting tags or posting photos myself of me running / climbing mountains etc.: and that's it.  I don't mention a word about Coco Girl's life on there.  Facebook gets the pleasure of seeing the occasional running pic and that's it.

I've gone to great lengths to keep them separate.  I guess because, well, weight loss is a very personal thing.  I have about 1400 friends on Facebook - of which about 1380 I know personally.  Apart from the 20 odd people who I have only met online, I keep my Facebook private and only for people I actually know - some a lot, some a little bit.  I have people from my whole life on there - I love it - for me it's a platform to stay in touch with friends and colleagues even if we don't hang out in the same circles anymore.  I value each person I connect with so I feel so lucky that I have this social media tool to have them all in one place!  I'll forever be grateful to Mark.Z.!  Anyway, I assume that these 1400 people don't want to, or at least need to, know my weight and fitness stuff!

And in Coco Girl land - I very rarely talk about the rest of my life, unless it fairly directly is related to my fitness journey.  Some of it is for privacy, the rest is just that I don't think you particularly would want to know the day to day stuff - seeing photos of me with my baby nieces in matching onesies.  Or the bonfire party I went to on Saturday night.  Or hearing about how I dropped my car keys into a locked storm water drain underneath my locked car on the way to work one morning (that was fun!)  Random, every day stuff.

I assume people who read my blog or follow me on Instagram or Twitter are looking for nutrition/fitness/weight loss stories, photos, fellow inspiration.  So I have kept them very separate to the rest of my life.  But I decided a few months ago that I felt ready to share a little and, as the goal I set says, 'combine my two worlds'.  I had been planning on making the "Kate Does Life" video for the last year, and so recently I decided that maybe that could be what I could post on my personal Facebook to do the sharing thing.

So yesterday I finished making the video.  I shared it with one friend.  Then I posted it in a couple of small Facebook groups I'm in, then as my confidence grew through the day, I shared it in a few more Facebook groups.  That video took me frigging ages to put together (do you know how many photos I take and how much I hate culling??) :) so I wanted to get value for my $ (time) ;)  and share it! :)  I got the most beautiful comments from my little groups - amazing feedback - so I felt ok to then share it with the next group!

Then it was time - I had made the goal of posting it on my personal Facebook page but when it came down to it, I started to have my doubts.  This video has me at my rawest!  It's one thing to go searching for the fattest photo with the most fat rolls that I can find for a 'before and after' photo to share with your weight loss buddies who are on the same's another to share it with the hot footy guy from high school.  This video has my most unattractive, fattest has me lying in a hospital bed at the most emotional time in my has me crying.

As I was sitting there, wondering if I was doing the right thing for myself, my friend sent me this picture, with the following words.  I had shared my video with her in a tiny private group an hour before:
Hi Kate. I found this picture after you had shared your video with us. Of courseit's up to you, but I think you should share your story. You have already inspired all of us in this group, I believe your story could inspire people just like that story you saw inspired you.
I knew then that I was ok to share it :)  I realised then that it wasn't so much about me bridging any gap in my two worlds, but it was about being more open – to help myself and in the off chance that maybe one person might think that they can do something, too.  That's how I initially found 12WBT!  I was ready to make a change personally, but it was only thanks to my amazing friend Cathy that she was open about her journey, that I found the program that helped me.  If she hadn't, I can say with pretty strong certainity that I would be in a much different circumstance tonight.

So, I shared it.  I then shook for about 2 hours straight.  It's such a personal thing to share.  It's like calling up friends from school and saying "by the way, just letting you know, I was fat.  Kthxbi."  Do you know what I mean?  Anyway, as much as I was shakingly overwhelmed, to be 100% honest, I didn't think my friends would watch it.  A video is something you have to click on - it's not a quick thing that you can scroll past on your newsfeed while cooking dinner.  But, I was in a big way, wrong.

For the last 24 hours, it's been going nuts.  I've had this crazy amount of friends 'liking' it, commenting, sharing it on their pages, private messaging and texting me all day.  I woke up to a zillion notifications and it hasn't stopped.  And if that wasn't enough, I was in a
lunchtime meeting when my phone started flashing even more - people were letting me know that 12WBT had posted it on their official Facebook page.  Far out!  I have no idea how I got through that meeting, trying to keep my brain in work mode!

And so it's continued.  It's crazy - in a really lovely way.  I've had messages from kids I used to babysit - old bosses - friends from primary school - my first boyfriend from summer camp when I was 12 (I am not even joking!) saying "well done".  My family even got a few messages!  I sat down tonight to start replying and reading everything properly, but I got overwhelmed, so I started to write this post instead!  

I can well and TRULY say that I have not only achieved my Worlds Combine goal, I have smashed it to smithereens, and then some.  I have never in my life been so honest or open or had my story shared as much as I have today.  My video is literally a miniscule snippet of my running journey – there is obviously so much more that I haven’t shared, even on this pretty open blog.  It’s hard to contain so much into 5 min. and 48 sec.

As much as I'm overwhelmed, I'm ok.  But still, it is so huge for me.  I kept that bluey green bridesmaid dress photo hidden at the time.  This is a dress where I had to order extra material so a dressmaker could add an extra panel.  I looked hideous and felt disgusting.  So it’s a little weird to be sharing it with 4.5k strangers – and that’s just on the 12WBT page.

Any doubts that I had were comforted by a certain text message I got yesterday.  Every comment and message has been amazing and some have been overwhelming, but this one SMS stands out for me: it made me know that I did the right thing.  You never know what battle someone is fighting and you may not realise that by sharing your story you may touch someone at the right moment.  It makes anything you may be feeling by sharing, absolutely, 100% worth it.  Yesterday was World Suicide Prevention Day and tomorrow is R U OK Day – two vital initiatives to help people reach out to one another.  I encourage you to share and reach out.  There is comfort in sharing. 

I still haven’t responded to any of the lovely messages of support but I’ll try and get there.  I’ve just been taking it all in.  I’m not about to start littering my Facebook with weight loss stats, or my blog with my family album, don’t you worry.  But it’s kind of a weight off my shoulders to not have this total separation anymore.  I just decided to share a tiny part of my journey and I am glad that I did.  Thank you everyone.  Hopefully some people will read this to know where I’m at and that I am very thankful.  And now that the world knows where to find this blog, they probably will ;)

Two worlds combine?

Yeah – I think I’ve combined. :)

Monday, 9 September 2013

Kate Does Life

Just a short (for the first time ever!) post today to share with you a video I made.

A year ago I watched the "Ben Does Life" video and got inspired. I wanted to do a "Kate Does Life" and run a half marathon.  As you know, I did!  And I made this video. This is how I found my feet and ran....this is “Kate Does Life” :)

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Happy 1 year of running to me!

So running, huh?


Bridge to Brisbane 1 year apart
I love everything about it!  This week has been a little funny…I got called a “Runholic” and running has been the top conversational point in all of my circles it seems!

One special thing was, this week was my ‘official’ 1 year running anniversary.  I started running in June 2012 with my first 12WBT fitness test time trial.  But this week, 1 year ago, I completed my first fun run.  Apart from a couple of silly things a few years ago, Bridge to Brisbane 2012 was my first official event, first fun run and the first time I ran 5km without stopping.  But more importantly, it was the first time I believed in myself as a runner.  Prior to this day I could only run for 1km – which at the time was a huge enough deal for me!  But a friend said to me “if you can run for 1km, you can run for 2km.”  I blew that out of the water that day and did run my first 2km ---- plus another 3km! ….The whole 5km.  This day is what kicked off my running.  It made me
On the top of Mt Ngun Ngun
believe that I could do it.

So, Bridge to Brisbane (B2B) rolled around again – 1 year on.  It wasn’t the 1 year thing that was too important, what was really special about this day was a promise I made myself. Last year I was petrified about the event, about running in public, about EVERYTHING. I wore about 6 bras, crop tops and jackets to keep the jiggling down, despite it being a warm day.  You can tell in the photo above that I could hardly move, I was wearing that many layers! ;)  I was anxious and afraid and didn't know what to expect. As I sat on the bus on the way to the start line of the 5km event, I looked outside and saw the 10km runners running past the bus. At that very moment, I promised myself that the next year, I would be one of the 10km runners.

At the start of Bridge to Brisbane
I've been running 10km's since January and have done a couple of half marathons and a stack of events in that time, but still, to do 10km at this years B2B was still so special to me. Because I promised that anxious girl last year that I would. 

And I did :)  I got to the start line of the 10km event "with the 10km runners", was not anxious, was NOT wearing 6 layers (in fact the middle of my back was a bit exposed - talk about change), I knew what to expect, I smiled instead of crying and I ran it. I didn't almost have to grab the paramedics because I felt I couldn't breathe like last year. I just ran. I had the hugest smile to myself when I ran past where I had been on the bus last year, looking out at
where I wanted to be. Best feeling ever. :)  And it was the perfect running anniversary!
Number 5...of 9!

I did another fun run the day before, just a 3km with my beautiful friend Courtney.  It was a little different to B2B – this one had just 9 runners!  We were numbers 5 and 6!  Very different compared to the 40,000 participants in B2B the next day!  So funny.  Also on the weekend I climbed a Glasshouse Mountain!  Just like the goal I set myself!  This was my Week 3 challenge for myself.  It was amazing.  I had a dozen awesome friends also doing it, so the company was great and the view was spectacular.  I am so glad I got to do this.

Anyway – since then things have gone a little bit nuts……two very special friends of mine, Greg and Ruth, and I made a promise that we would run next years Gold Coast full marathon!  I thought I may as well start in my home state before tackling Boston or New York :P  But yes – we have made this promise.  Running a full marathon is something I knew was there but I wouldn’t allow myself to properly consider until I’d run my first half.  Did that!  So a marathon is next!  I am SO excited!

But what I’m also excited about is this.  Ruth set up a Facebook page for us, that people can
The beautiful Court and me
‘Like’ and follow our journey.  We’ve had some great support on it but the coolest thing is that we have all of these people wanting to join us!  The Gold Coast Marathon has a full marathon, a half marathon, a 10km and a 5.7km event (as well as a Junior Dash).  Heaps of our friends have put their hands up, saying that they too want to do one of the events.  Many of these people are from the awesome 30+ Crew or doing 12WBT and they’ve started pledging that they will do either the full, half, 10 or 5.7.  It’s amazing and has blown us away.  All these runners are appearing – it’s like a movement of sorts…a running movement…the best kind!

Jumping on a mountain!
What inspires me about this is that each of these people are making these pledges as a calculated goal.  They’ve thought it out and, bravely determined, have said “yes, I will do that.”  Each one has a different story, a different reason for making it their goal, a different distance.  The distance isn’t important – what is, is that they’re putting their hands up, backing themselves and saying “I will do this.”  It’s kickstarting a few of my friends, getting them excited again, by making goals and planning.  This is really exciting!  Please feel free to join us – the Facebook page is here and you’ll find some of the pledges on one of the recent posts.  It’s going to be an amazing weekend and an equally as amazing 10 months to get ready.

Because...I never thought I could
A couple of people asked me this week why I run.  I only had to think for a moment.  I got this shirt from Suncorp Run Positive for the B2B.  It’s so cool, they printed personalised singlets for anyone who joined their team!  This was my reason for running: because I never thought I could.  It’s not that I never believed I could – if I want to do something I’m pretty bloody determined.  But I just never imagined, or dreamed that I would be able to.  It never crossed my mind.  School girl Kate decided I wasn’t an athlete or runner, so it never happened.  But if you dare to dream, and plan, and most importantly, TRY, you can do practically anything.  The other
main reason is simply, because, I love it.  I get a rush from it.  I love that I don’t need anything fancy for it.  I just need my shoes and open space.  There’s so many other things I’ve tried but they don’t give me what running does.  Body Pump makes me shield my face in class because I find myself physically rolling my eyes and I don't want to be rude.  Cycling makes me have dramatic crying breakdowns.  Obstacle courses make me feel like throwing a 2 year old planted feet tantrum.  These things don’t give me a rush or excite me.  Big goals should take your breath away.  And if they don’t, keep searching until you find something that does.  And then work your backside off until you achieve it.

Respect, value, nourish, believe in and work towards your goals. They CAN come true. You may be sitting on the bus looking out today, but next year you can be anywhere you dream of. It doesn't have to be running..........It simply has to be something you believe in. Honour your goals. You've all they've got.

Bring on the Gold Coast 2014. :)

My friends who climbed Mt Ngun Ngun with me!

The start of Ngun!

This is where we heard this strange noise - it sounded like a volcano erupting!  Now these mountains are old volcanos so it was a bit disturbing when you're halfway up one and hear this noise! :)

It's like Picnic at Hanging Rock but with women wearing pink...

The view blew me away

Helppppppppppp! lol

Court and I arriving at Saturday's fun run with 7 minutes to spare, the 7 minutes included a much needed toilet break and to register!  We were laughing while running from the car as we were so late - but there's always time for a selfie!

And yes, always time for a selfie mid run ;)