Run Nurse Rest
In her fourth and final blog post, Maria reflects on the challenge of a lifetime.
London Marathon 2016 ......We rocked it, wearing an orange tutu and our Saint Francis Hospice running vests with pride.
We have had an amazing time fundraising and training for this fabulous event which seemed so far away back in November. We didn't just run the 26.2 mile London Marathon we clocked up around 300 miles in training and along the way discovered the best and worst about each other when the going got tough. This journey didn't just take us out of our comfort zone, it moved it so far out of our reach at times but never did we feel like giving up. We may have run each of those miles on our own two feet but it took a whole lot of people to get us to that start line.
We are both amazed and overwhelmed by the support shown by our colleagues. Like most people we expect our families to support us when we take on new adventures but our colleagues were absolutely amazing. They supported us, not only in donating to our boot sale appeals, but either helping out on the quiz night or attending with their own family and friends. So many of them made the journey up to London and supported us throughout the run, all five hours and 3 minutes of it and then waited around to make sure we all celebrated at the end before supporting us on the journey home.
The people at home watching out for us on the TV were then so richly rewarded when they spotted us and we're able to record, which helped to make our day more special. This adventure of ours became an adventure for a lot of the team. You have to admire them not to yawn and roll their eyes whenever the word marathon was mentioned! But I do think it is now a banned word and will cost us £1 each time we mention it.
So what did we learn........ We can run 26.2 miles, we hate orange Lucozade, jelly babies and bananas. We love that when out fundraising the sight of us dressed in our hospice uniforms brought out the best in people and at times they queued up to drop money in our buckets.
When we wrote to a number of people asking for items to raffle they didn't hesitate. In no particular order we would like to thank the following people and organisations who have helped us along the way by providing items for us to raffle or auction or provided a service free of charge to help us:
Brentwood Golf Club, Gym Rox Tots Brentwood Centre, Lashes N locks Brentwood Centre, West Ham United FC, Andrew Rosendale MP, Sir Eric Pickles MP, Martin Branch, Collier Row Catholic Club, North Collier Row Community Centre, In Prints - personalised t-shirt printing, Romford Thrift Green Trotters Running Club, English Cricket Board, Chelsea FC, Leyton Orient FC, Clare Horgan, Tina Cottee, Time FM, Tesco's Collier Row, B & Q Gallows Corner, Sainburys Brentwood, Wendy - complimentary Therapy Queens Theatre.
There have been a great deal of other people, too many to name, who have helped and to those people we would like to express our heartfelt thanks.
So if you were in any way inspired by our journey then please have the faith in yourself that you can achieve anything you put your mind to. It doesn't have to be the full 26.2 miles marathon it can be the Star Walk, Santathon, Mud 'n' Madness, Brentwood Half Marathon or any number of the events held by the hospice. Just go for it. You won't be alone in any adventure as you will have the full support and backing of the fundraising team and all the other hospice supporters taking part. Pop to the GP, get yourself checked out and then the world of fundraising is your oyster.
As for next year's London Marathon ........... Watch this space!