Why a Quarter Marathon?

So, I know I’ve already written a blog about doing a 7 mile walk for Comic Relief , but I thought I’d write a little bit more about it here, and why I’ve chosen this distance to walk.

rnd honkus
Me wearing Honkus Ponkus, one of this year’s red noses. Shortly after this, HP was sadly chewed by Ozzy.

Last year, I really started trying to walk more. I’ve found that it has really helped both my physical and mental well being. I don’t do well sat in the house all day and making sure that I get outside more often is not only helping with the weight loss attempt but also gives me an opportunity to clear my head, and leaves me feeling much fresher afterwards.

In 2018, I did two walking challenges but these were over extended periods of time. I did pace challenges for Sport Relief in March and then in the last quarter of the year I did the Countryfile Ramble for Children in Need. For both of these I had to walk a certain amount over a few days or weeks, and I found it really good for my motivation. Adding to the Race at Your Pace it’s why I finished the year losing weight and feeling better about myself.

I started 2019 with the idea that I would like to beat my 2018 fundraising total (£381.86), and decided that I wanted to push myself with longer distance walks this year. I think doing something on a set day would give me a better focus, and would also mean that as soon as the event is done I can stop hassling people for sponsorship.

In the newspapers I saw a few adverts for charity events where you signed up for long distance walks, and decided these looked like a good idea. There was a time when I probably would have signed up there and then, but I’m older and wiser now, and did a quick bit of research. It turned out that I’d underestimated how long it would take to train for a walk over 20 miles, and decided that I should probably build up to this over time.

The quarter marathon for Comic Relief is the start of my attempts to increase my fitness to the level where I can take on more difficult, longer challenges. I figure it’s better to approach it this way, instead of pushing myself too hard, too fast. If I had gone for one of those massive walks first of all, I suspect I would have failed, and this would have had a massive impact on me.

First of all, the knock to my confidence would have thrown me off my progress, and discouraged me from continuing with other challenges. Having to share my failure would probably be a difficult thing to do, none of us enjoy reliving and laying bare our shortcomings.

I would have felt that I had let down my sponsors, the charity I was representing and myself. And this could open the door to a dark place that could leave me feeling really bad about myself. I don’t want to feel like that, I’m trying to feel better about myself and improve my self esteem.

Doing a long distance walk without sufficient preparation would have jeopardised all the work I’ve tried to do on myself. So, that’s why I’m starting small.

Of course, this leads to extra problems, because whenever I’m hustling for donations, like with this blog, I feel kinda lame. My seven mile walk seems small compared to people climbing Kilimanjaro or running marathons. And it seems positively insignificant when I see updates from Jamie McDonald’s Super US Run, where he’s running across America.

Asking for money to cover 7 miles suddenly seems a bit lame.

But I need to stop comparing myself to others. They didn’t do those marathons or mountains on day one.

The person I need to measure myself against is me.

For me, seven miles is a new thing to do. I haven’t done it all in one go before. So for me, it is a challenge. I’m pushing myself, and it doesn’t matter if it’s something someone else could do with ease. We’re all in different places, and I can’t be down on myself because someone else is ahead of me. It’s like going to the gym and on the first day being annoyed you can’t break the world for lifting weights.

So, I hope having read all this slightly rambling post you can appreciate that I am testing myself slightly and that the quarter marathon walk is more than just one walk. It’s the first walk in what I hope to be a series of increasingly difficult challenges.

Anyway, here’s the link for sponsorship and it starts as low as £3, so if you can spare that it’d be gratefully received, not just by me, but by everyone that Comic Relief helps around the world.

Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.

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