Meet Hannah Gregory. Hannah is the winner of the Run Mummy Run marathon training package competition. She has won a personalised training plan and on-line support from Matt Buck of Running Adventures . Over the next few months we will be following Hannah’s progress towards hopefully her best 26.2. This is her story so far….
In Jan 2012 I had brain surgery to remove a benign but growing tumour. As part of my preparation for the op, I ran and as part of my recovery from the op, I ran. I had never really been a runner and it wasn’t something I particularly enjoyed but, I needed to be in excellent physical health.
Post op, I decided I needed a goal and signed up for the Liverpool half marathon and Manchester marathon. I was eating healthily, I wasn’t drinking, I was picking up more exercise each day. I was confident I could do it. I over – estimated myself.
The Liverpool half I completed in the March, and I have completed several halves since. The Manchester marathon in April was a different kettle of fish.
The weather was horrendous on race day – I was wet through before I had even started. I pushed any doubts I had to the back of my mind – I had trained. Looking back, my marathon training had not been well planned, nor was it vigorous enough, nor had I take any advice. Although I was fit, I was just not race ready. What happened next was really no surprise.
Half way round, I knew there was no way I could go further. I had battled through 13 difficult miles, but that was my limit. I was cold, wet through, shivering, forcing my legs to keep going. A church was open with St Johns Ambulance. Something inside me told me I had to stop.
The medic I saw told me I was hyperthermic and got me a blanket and a sugary tea. I was to wait to be collected by a bus to take me back to the start.
I felt foolish. Naive. Stupid. It was too much and I should have known that.
Suddenly, as I sat in a pew feeling sorry for myself, the vicar appeared and asked if I wanted some dry clothes. I didn’t care what they were – I wanted them.
He took me to his house, where I gate crashed his Sunday afternoon tea with friends. His wife leant me some warm, comfy clothes and got me cake and a brew. I dried off and was asked who I was running for. I explained why I run for brain tumour research and the people in that room sponsored me – even though it was clear I wasn’t going to finish. I stayed with them almost two hours until transportation came for me.
I have not attempted a marathon since although I have run lots. Since having my daughter in May I needed a new challenge! I got a running buggy and I signed up to Blackpool. Aaaaagh!
Having won the competition I now have a marathon training plan in place which fits around my life and my family. Matt from Running Adventures has been brilliant and is really supportive – always at the end of an email to answer my questions no matter how daft they are (I think asking about waterproof trainers was my finest hour). Training so far is going well, as well as getting out for long runs at the weekend I have a variety of exercises and runs to do during the week – and even two rest days. I have had some very wet runs but so far no ice or snow – fingers crossed for the coming weeks!