Monday, 25 April 2016

A weekend of contrasts

I have had probably one of the most memorable weekends of my life. Let me explain.
Tim got asked to help out with a friends long distance running challenge, and I thought I'd go along and be on hand if any help was needed with logistics. The run goes up and over 42 Lake District peaks with about 67 miles of running, and around 8000m of ascent. This, in the running world, is known as the 'Bob Graham Round' - or BG for short. There's a special BG club you become a member of if you get round this challenge in less than 24hrs. It's a tough challenge. We know a few friends who've completed it and have total respect for each and every person who sets off wanting to complete it, let alone get a sub-24. I have a vague plan to walk the route over 3 days. It's that much of a challenge!
So, our friend (Jasmin Paris), was going to attempt a 'fast round'. She's a fast runner, often winning long and tough races so we know we were in for a special event this weekend. There'll be a full write up of this soon, but, cutting a long story short...the women's record had been set at 18hrs06. That's fast. Jasmin, who ran the round this weekend absolutely obliterated this time, finishing strongly in 15hrs24 (5th fastest ever time recorded by anyone, and only 90mins off the overall record time). Tim had the honour of being one of her support runners on the final section and I witnessed the start, road crossing at Honister and the finish back in Keswick.
Jasmin descending the 42nd and final hill (Robinson) on her way back towards Keswick
To say I'm in awe and completely inspired would just about touch on how I feel to have been there. Congratulations Jasmin, an inspiration and a fell running legend.
In absolute contrast, someone who may never know this, is also my inspiration. My nan. She's now 94 years old and has been bedridden for quite a few years. She's totally reliant on others for all of her self care. I do my best to be healthy, stay active and fit so that I am able to care for myself and experience life to the full. To be unable to walk and only seeing the same four walls each day would not be a good place to be. So whilst my nan has never been very active, she inspires me to be her opposite. Last night my mother called, nan was rushed into hospital. She's essentially at the end of her life, just clinging on. There's no way to know how long she has left, and when I visit it's unlikely she'll know who I am. I wish there was something to do for her, other than live my life to the full.
My nan, Vera.
I write this as it's a stark reminder of the contrast between living life to the full and life passing you by, just existing. We all make choices which lead us to where we are now, and influence our future. People take up activities in their 60's and well beyond - there really is no excuse. You are never too old to change. We do not need to slow down and become less active just because years are passing. Our bodies adapt to what we do - be inactive and you'll stiffen up and experience discomfort. Stay active and you'll live a healthier, fuller and happier life.
What's your inspiration?
What could you change now, that will benefit you in the future?
View from Latrigg, above Keswick