Last week we got a whole load of inspiration from Viv who kickstarted our Monday Motivation Blogs! This week we’ve caught up with another amazing member of Tri Energy – our nutter Jennie. Jennie’s main race this year – Race to the Stones – was cancelled but that didn’t stop her completing her own epic endurance challenge. Read Jennie’s story here to get a whole load of Monday motivation to set you up for the week ahead…..
“I started running properly after my second baby. I had been a gym addict before children and used to go there all the time. After I had my first baby I really struggled to fit in exercise alongside working full time and trying to be a mum. I did a bit here and there but nothing too much. After my second I wanted to start running properly, Dan brought me a running watch and before completing couch to 5k I signed up my first half. I plodded round and was so proud of myself when I finished. Shortly after I was pregnant again and running again took a back seat. After the birth of my third I was desperately looking for a running club, I wanted the community of people who also enjoyed running. I tried a few and, in the end, stumbled across Tri Energy. I went to one track session and was completely hooked. I love it – the coaches are amazing and the people are supportive and who knew you could have so much fun running around in circles on an athletics track.
I spent a few years ticking over completing the odd half marathon here and half marathon there. Last year at work I got a bit of a wake up call as to how short life can be. One of my colleagues husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He has an 11 year old and a wife and I could just see her world falling apart. At the same time another colleague was going through a cancer scare and having many tests. I just couldn’t understand it all and I decided I wanted to raise money for cancer research. I decided I needed to do something, that something was going to be Race to the Stones 2020, a 100km endurance challenge. 2020 rolls round and I start the training plan. I really didn’t see COVID 19 coming along and cancelling pretty much all of the events. At the same time as COVID 19 coming along, one of my best friends from school (who I’m still good friends with) got in touch telling me her sister had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, her sister is younger than me and has twin boys the same age as my middle boy; my head was telling me she couldn’t have cancer it just wasn’t fair. That is when I decided I had to carry on with my aim to raise money for cancer research and embrace some sort of endurance challenge. Threshold events then published their 100km in a week challenge- perfect I thought, but can I do it? That’s a really long way with no training. I talked to my right hand man, Dan, and he told me a could do and he would support me. It’s always important to me to have Dan’s support in any challenges I take on, he is brilliant with his support and taking the kids so I can run for hours on end!
I spent the few weeks before not really over doing it, I tried to get as much support from people as I called on my Tri Energy support network and found people to run with every day. They all offered different distances they could help with; but running with people made all the difference. I wanted to get as much distance done at the beginning of the week as I could, thinking while motivation was high I should try and get loads done. I started on the Monday with a lovely run along the river it was beautiful and the sun was shining. The sun was not to last the rain came and I kept running, I was running morning and night most days in the rain, luckily I had two pairs of trainers I could swap around and dry. To be honest I don’t really know how I got up and went first thing for a 3k-5k and then did 10-15km at night but somehow I did, I’m almost certain it was down to the fab people I had running with me (in the rain!). One day I couldn’t bring myself to run my 15km in one go so went out for three 5km at different stages, shorter runs just mentally felt more manageable. Day 6 came and Lauren and Carly were there as my running buddies for the day “Lets do the 20km you have left now and get it over and done with” said Lauren… so off we plodded and somehow cracked out a near half marathon to complete the challenge in 6 days rather than 7. Being cheered over the line by the four men in my life.
I thought a lot about my friends sister while I was running and all of the people I have known who have fought this horrible disease. I also thought about how COVID has taken over our health headlines and cancer is going under the radar, screenings cancelled or delayed and treatment stopped. Cancer research has lost so much funding this year with events cancelled. I raised £850 for Cancer Research (over £1000 with gift aid) during this event and I am truly grateful to everyone who sponsored me.
Running is pretty much my life, without it I don’t know what I would do and the family of Tri Energy make it all so much more fun. I’m going to complete Race to the Stones next year with the 100km in one go and since doing this challenge I feel like I can definitely do it. I know there is more in my body than I realise and I can push myself more than I thought I could. And one day I will complete a triathlon (promise!).”