As you know, I am running in the London Marathon in April, to raise money for Breast Cancer Now.
I am now 4 weeks into my 16-week training programme, with 12 weeks to go before the big day!
I am up to 18km (11 miles) on my long runs, getting up to 21km by next week, which is half-marathon distance. I have run one half-marathon before – Stratford, last April – so it will be good to see if my time has improved over the year.
I have been listening to motivational audio books and talks as I train. A great TED talk to watch while doing challenging hill sprints on a treadmill is by Diana Nyad, who was the first person to swim the 100 miles from Cuba to Florida, in shark-infested waters. Diana finally did it, in 2013, on her 5th attempt – at the age of 64. Her mantra, to somehow ‘find a way’, kept her going; and I have decided to adopt this as my mantra for 2016.
The marathon is clearly going to be very tough, but it is the thought that I am raising money for such a good cause that motivates me as I train. Breast Cancer Now is determined to stop deaths from breast cancer by 2050. Although many more survive than ever before, 1000 women every month still die from it in the UK.
This inspirational charity organised a superb marathon training day last weekend, with talks on nutrition, injury prevention and training, where I also met many of the other runners aiming to raise vital funds for the charity.
We heard a fascinating talk by Shane Foo, one of Breast Cancer Now’s researchers, about ground-breaking research he and his team are undertaking on the way breast cancer tumours behave, and why they so often spread to other organs. Shane’s team are aiming to find ways of slowing down or stopping their spread.
I would like to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who has sponsored me so far. I know it’s tough to find extra cash at this time of year, so soon after Christmas, so I am very appreciative of everyone who has already sponsored me in my quest to raise £3000 for Breast Cancer Now. I still have some way to go, but I am making good progress!
I’d love it if you would support me with some sponsorship, if you can. I have a fund-raising page set up at www.justgiving.com/jostroud.
I’ll continue to keep you updated with my progress over the next few weeks, as the date gets closer! Thanks very much for reading this, and for your support.