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Run Nurse Run: Maria's London Marathon Diary, Part 2.

Maria and fellow inpatient unit nurse, Tracey, will be tackling 26.2 miles in London for Saint Francis Hospice in April. Here is part two of Maria's training diary, as the pair face their longest run yet... 
Maria Bishop and Tracey McGarry preparing for a run (cropped)

So what have we learnt more than 3 months into our training ?     

We have learned non blister socks give you blisters if you run 15 miles in them when they're new. Experiment with new training kit, trainers and especially socks on your shorter runs or even in your gym sessions. Not everything does what it says on the box.      

We have also learnt sports drinks can taste absolutely disgusting. Tracey is the most placid well mannered person you will ever have the pleasure to meet. If you want to see another side of her, give her an orange flavoured sports drink. It's hilarious. Hers eyes widened her face contorted to a shape I have never seen before and after a not so lady like ejection of the drink from her mouth she growled "that stuff needs a health warning". Hasten to add we don't drink orange flavoured sports drink in training anymore. In my experience on the day of the marathon that is the only flavour available so we will need our supporters to carry other flavours to make sure Tracey stays hydrated.      

We have both decided that running is hard but fundraising is even harder. Hats off to our Saint Francis Hospice Fundraising team who do this all the time. We have had some amazing experiences though so far. The local community of Collier Row donated an amazing £332 when we had a collection day at Tesco's, the shoppers of B&Q at Gallows Corner were equally generous and we are really hoping the customers of Sainburys in Brentwood will do us proud on the 2nd April.      

We had a brilliant welcome when we went to Leyton Orient Football Supporters Club.  The club donated 4 home game tickets and with an added bottle of whiskey, we raised £195 and found out what a great bunch of supporters they are.       

Steps Ahead Dance Academy run by Martin Branch held a Barn Dance at the North Collier Row Community Centre and thanks to them and their generous spirit we had a great night dancing and raised an amazing £520.  

In between working and fundraising we have been running. Doing really well, even in this horrible cold, windy, cold, rain, windy, cold....did I mention cold weather? Amazingly,  if you run with the wind in front of you and turn the corner you would think it would then be behind you. Amazingly, no. We ran 16 miles one day with the wind in our faces the whole time.  We were pushing so hard against the wind we felt we weren't moving at some points but then for the 30 seconds the wind dropped and we nearly fell flat on our faces. 

We are both feeling the pain at the end of the long runs and although we respected how long a marathon is, it's amazing how far a 20 mile training run sounds when said out loud, let alone run it. See what you think....     

Elm Park to Rainham then along to Hornchurch High Road following the road on to Roneo Corner, straight through Romford and up to Gallows Corner, turn left and run along the Eastern Avenue all the way to the Moby Dick pub, before turning left again and down through Chadwell Heath .....not finished yet, stay with me ...... Carrying on to Dagenham Civic Centre, past the fire station and through to Dagenham East before finishing back at Elm Park.      

Fancy a lay down yet?     

So although we must, in the far reaches of the backs of our minds, enjoy running and will certainly be extremely proud of our achievement, we are primarily taking part in this grueling training at the worst time of the year to raise money and awareness for Saint Francis Hospice.      

Please help us in any way you can. A wave and toot of the car horn if you see us out running in our orange hospice tops, or a donation no matter how big or small.       

See you next month for an update. Our sold out quiz night is on the 20th February and we are waitressing at a coffee morning on 4th March. It's all go but hey it's going to be worth every ache, pain and blister for our community of patients who need our hospice services.