I was never particularly sporty at school... it was pretty much a case of if you weren't in the netball team then you were considered no good. Once a year we were all walked over to the local park (our North London school didn't have the luxury of fields) and expected to run 400m for Sport's Day. Not the most inspiring start. Wind forward fifteen years and two children later I decided I needed to get fit and so at the age of 29, inspired by watching the London Marathon I took up running. I literally walked 100 yards and ran 100 yards... and it hurt!
But just one year later on 17th April 1988 I ran that marathon. It took me over 5 hours but I did it!
I think this photo of me at the finish with Ben is one of my favourites ever.
And later that evening we celebrated with family and friends... including my brother who also ran the London Marathon that year. ( I make no apologies for wearing what looks like over sized children's pyjamas... it was the 1980s!) Those medals felt like Olympic Golds to us!
From then on, running became a part of my life. I loved that all it took was to put on a pair of trainers and go out the front door... it always gave me a buzz. Ten years and another two children later I ran the London marathon again, this time taking over an hour off my time... despite pouring rain and my arm in plaster.
So you can imagine that when osteo-arthritis in my knees put an end to my running days I found it really difficult. I've tried swimming (too wet) and cycling (too much traffic) but nothing else really came close. However, I have kept on walking as regularly as I can so when I spotted an ad in the local paper for a 10 mile charity walk it seemed like just the challenge I needed... these wonderful Olympics have a lot to answer for! On September 8th I will be walking in the Starlight Walk... 10 miles at 11.30 pm at night.
And as a bonus it is a chance to raise money for the Garden House Hospice in Letchworth. It just so happens the hospice movement is a charity close to my heart at the moment as my Dad is very poorly with cancer. If you want to support me you can find my JustGiving page here:
I started training this week and already I've got two huge blisters so I think I'm going to need all the support I can get!