10 November 2019
14 November. 2019 • Category: Running | Addiction | Mental Health | Mindfulness | Anxiety | Authenticity | Sobriety
A beautiful evening at the beach.
Addiction is a slow moving disease. It sneaks up on you. It tricks you. It makes you question every thing you thought you knew, everything about yourself. It isolates you. It makes you think you are alone. No one really understands you any more, but how can they when you don’t explain, when you’d rather have a drink than talk? It’s easier that way, you see. Addiction is destructive. Damaging. But to start with you don’t see it and when you do, you don’t believe it, because alcohol is your friend, isn’t it? Of course it is, it makes you relax and it makes you fun. Talking is uncomfortable. It makes you face things you’d really rather not. It makes you question your choices, it makes you open up and let out the ugly truth. Drinking, (or any form of substance abuse), is easier. It makes the problem go away. Until one day it doesn’t any more.
On the other side of it, everything is new. Everything is harder. Simple things are difficult, now everything is emotional, but everything is you. There are no longer two of you, the one sober and the one tipsy (smashed). Every choice you make is yours, every decision, that’s yours too. And when you forget something, that’s okay. It happens to everyone at times, you don’t have to blame drinking for making you forget a conversation.
It’s a beautiful world out there when you choose to see it again.
Thanks for reading!
13 November. 2019 • Category: Running | Addiction | Mental Health | Family | Mindfulness | Anxiety | Authenticity | Sobriety
A runway full of runners. I'm on the right near the silver van!
Am I the only one who panics before and sometimes during a run? I think it’s getting worse. Or maybe it’s just because I’m going further and am usually a bit faster? I don’t know. All I know is that it used to be hard to get out or to get to the start line. Now, even when I do that I struggle. It honestly seems like my mind is out to get me. I feel like I won’t be able to do it, that I’ll have to stop and I won’t be able to finish whatever distance it is I’m trying to do. Even if it’s something I know I can comfortably do.
A couple of weekends ago I ran The Cornwall Air Ambulance Runway Run with my son. Last year it was the first official race I booked for us to do, although due to bad weather it was postponed and we ran another race first. Anyway, it was our ‘first’ 5K and we raised a lot of money for the Air Ambulance New Helicopter Appeal. I struggled on that race, because it was so flat, there weren’t any hills where I could comfortably slow down for a minute to catch my breath. It was cold too and I felt so slow. It wasn’t until I finished that I realised that I had clocked one of my fastest ever 5k times.
This year they didn’t offer the 5k option and knowing we could both happily run 10k I signed us both up. I didn’t realise it was an 8am start and of course we had to be there before that, so it was still quite dark! But it makes sense that they got the runners clear of the runway before the airport opened for the day. The sun came up and it was a dry day as we waited for the race to start, which was lovely as we had been experiencing pretty much non-stop rain before that. We met some other members of our running club and waited with them, I knew I wouldn’t be as fast as they are, but it was nice to be part of the group.
The race itself was interesting, it went up and down the runway, and in and out alongside some of the hangars. The difficulty with it being so open is that you could see many of the people in front and behind you, so it almost felt like we weren’t moving. There were more inclines than I expected from a runway, but in hindsight it makes sense that they were there for drainage. At one point I saw my son and a friend coming back the other way and we waved, he was just flying along effortlessly as he does. I have no idea how he does it! Meanwhile, I started to think too much and began to really struggle for breath. The more I thought, the more I realised I couldn’t get a breath, which made me panic more. I properly scared myself before managing to get it under control and pull myself back. I managed to keep running, and luckily as it was so busy, I fell into step with some other runners. Concentrating on the sound of our feet really helped.
At one point as we ran beneath the wings of several airplanes, all belonging to Thomas Cook, they seemed to be parked there for storage. It’s sad to think of a company that was around for so long disappearing like it did and it was eerie to be beneath them. Last summer we went to Spain with Thomas Cook, we weren’t one of the many families affected by the company’s closure, but it was sad to think that it may have been one of the last holidays provided by the company.
So, like many people, I struggle with anxiety amongst other things. Running helps but it isn’t a cure, yet. I guess I’ll just keep on keeping on. There isn’t much else I can do! Oh, and would you believe, for that race, I only went and got a 10k PB!
Thanks for reading.
11 November. 2019 • Category: Running | Addiction | Mental Health | Mindfulness | Anxiety | Authenticity | Sobriety
Remembrance Run on the Beach.
I haven’t written in a while. I’m never sure whether what I write is any good, if any one really wants to read it and in fact, I’m not sure really if I should be writing some of the things I have. It’s strange letting you all in to my thoughts and feelings. I don’t have a tendency to let too many people in, but in some ways it feels nice too, like I’m able to let go of things a bit. So after a lot of thinking, I’ve decided to keep writing, I mean, no one has to read it, right?
Yesterday I ran The St Michaels Mount Remembrance Run. For anyone that knows Cornwall, you’ll know that The Mount sits on an island out from Marazion, and the run was four and a half miles along the beach from there and back.
We started at 11:02am, just after the two minute silence and everyone was asked to wear something red. It was a beautiful way to commemorate the day, all of the chatter at the start of the race stopped immediately at the blow of a whistle. The only sound was that of the waves, until the sound of a horn ended the silence and started the race. Dressed in red, it looked like poppies had been scattered across the beach.
It was a beautiful run, harder going than I had imagined, as the sand was difficult to run on, and the tide was coming in. My daughter Katie ran with me and it was so lovely to be able to chat with her, for once not worrying about a time, but just enjoying the lovely sunshine and scenery. I’d warned her we would get wet feet, but at one point there was a river crossing that came up over our knees. The current was so strong it almost whipped my feet away, probably due to the heavy rains we’ve had lately. Luckily we both kept our footing, which was great as I had my phone and car key in my pocket! It was a beautiful morning though, we were so lucky to have a break in the almost continuous wind and rain we’ve had and enjoy the sunshine even if it was still a little cold.
What a lovely way to spend a Sunday morning and a beautiful way to remember.
Thanks for reading!