We’ve received so many amazing comments about how motivating you’ve been finding our Monday Motivation blogs. The ‘extraordinary’ really does lie in people who may appear rather ‘ordinary’. Taking the time to find out about our club members and being curious about their journey has been incredible, and that’s the word I’d use to describe the lady featuring on our week 5 blog. Fondly nicknamed ‘Granny Jac’ – she is the caring, nurturing member that makes sure everyone is ok. The one who spreads words of wisdom, looks after our mental health and is compassionate yet not afraid to give you a gentle nudge if that’s what you need. Yet underneath her caring exterior there is quite simply a ‘warrior’!!! A fighter, a determined go-getter and I hope you enjoy her contribution this week as much as I have.
Granny Jac’s Journey:
“I have always been fat, often I have been quite lazy. I have struggled to commit to training and always attempted to “go it alone”. I hit 40 (a long time ago!!) worried that my health was suffering. I had lost weight before (often) and put it back on. I decided to run a marathon (as you do) so I did …but without any advice, all alone, with no guidance. The weight fell off as I pounded the streets but I was injured regularly and less than 5 months later I was back to the weight i was before. I “faffed” about for more years than I can remember but I realised when I was 53 that I needed to do something.
I came across Tri Energy by accident – it was a much smaller club then. I signed up to a Monday night run group and really worked hard. I only ran…but I mentioned to Sam that I like swimming. She took me outdoor swimming for the first time…..and oh what joy!! I had tried cycling but was not good at it; to get good I would have to focus on it and I felt that would impact on my running and swimming. So I committed to aquathlon and the aquathlon events went well. I then discovered cold water swimming including breaking the ice to swim and swimming at temperatures below 5 degrees!!! I discovered that I was really good at it ….then…..well…..life happened. One very ill parent that I nursed followed by the other one took up all of my time and so I didn’t come to the club at all for 18 months; and well there it is….6 stone heavier, unable to walk upstairs and feeling so lost and, to be honest – embarrassed. What I used to be able to do……well it was now a memory. I didn’t know what to do. So I talked to Sam and she told me “never be too proud to start again” and “always be humble enough to admit you need to re focus.”
So fast forward to January 2020, then with my 57th birthday approaching I started the Triathlon squad. The first session was so awful – how to be smacked in the face with how you have changed – but I was committed. I knew that I had to do more than run so I did walking, running, strength and conditioning and yoga. The virtual world of Trisolation created in lockdown was really good for me and I completed all the challenges (especially the dressing up ones!). I know I will never be an Olympian so I believe enjoying and celebrating whatever we do is the way forward. At the moment, with my 58th birthday the next landmark, we are in Trisolation Revisited (lockdown 2.0!) and I am working hard, again with a rounded plan of walking, running, yoga, swim cords, turbo, HIIT, step and S&C. My family understand and support me and I am so lucky but Tri Energy is the key….like minded people who just want you to do your best, who applaud you, support you and just think you are bonkers!!
So what have I learned on my sporting journey so far?
- Life gets in the way (often) – and it absolutely should – family first always -“ages and stages” as my late boss used to say
- You can do it again if you are not too proud
- Doing it with a club who become your family is key
- Doing it with guidance helps
- Be kind always – you get it back in heaps
- Be kind to yourself
- Just keep coming back and keep going
- A journal helps
- Resilience helps
- It is more of a “head game” than a physical one
My hard work is paying off and the goals I set for myself, I have achieved:
sub 1 hour 10k – I ran 56.44 last week
sub 28 min 5k – I have just run 27.04 (it was 39.38 in January)
And as for my next goals?
GB age grades in my 60th year (aquathlon)
Sub 56 10k
Sub 26:30 5k
Complete an ice mile
and most importantly,
be queen of dressing up!!!