- Graduation – I earned my degree in Procurement after 7 long years! Most people take 3 years, but I drank all the way through mine and I’m convinced this made me take longer as I failed so many exams. The last exam which I had already failed 3 times, I passed within a few weeks of going sober.
- Ultra marathon – In June I completed an ultra-marathon event raising £1,250 for Sarcoma UK. This was by far the furthest my legs had carried me, at 36 miles (58KM) it took almost 17 hours to complete, of which 13 hours was moving. This was as much a mental challenge as it was physical, I signed up to that challenge to celebrate my sobriety.
- Climbed Mountains – during my ultra-training I climbed Scafell Pike (England’s highest Peak) – not for the first time, but I certainly found it so much easier without the overwhelming amount of toxins in my body! The sense of achievement and the feeling of ‘being alive’ at the top is something I won’t forget! I also climber Snowdon too a few months later, again memorable!
- Achieved sobriety for 1 year – In October I celebrated my first complete year of sobriety, I got bought a beautiful watch, a day at Lytham St Ann’s in a beach hut and lots of cards from my friends! It was a wonderful celebration.
- Started a New Running Group – In July we started a new running group in Whitefield, we didn’t even research if people needed this or would turn up, but we though if no-one does, we’ll just go and run ourselves. Well 107 people the first week and we have had consistently high numbers since, it’s safe to say the need for the club was there!
- Awarded Learner of the Year award at work – I must have got this for taking 7 years to pass my exams ha ha! It was such a shock though and awarded me for passing my exam and having my letters after my name, but also encouraging my team to study and develop themselves too.
- Nominated for an ‘Inspiring Women’ award, Fitness & Wellbeing category – This was a recent shock, but very welcome. Very honoured to have been nominated and I’ve since learned it was by multiple people – I assume for the work with Run Together Whitefield, which is of course a team effort.
- Friendships – I’ve mentioned before (just once or twice! Ha) about friends being such a big part of my life this past year and I really do have the best most supportive ones without a doubt! They are my rocks and friends for life- cheesy I know, but it’s true.
- My Relationship with Pete – I don’t think we actually knew each other properly before, I know that seems extreme, but we were either hammered or hung over, all of the time – this year we have spent time together and got to know each other – it’s just as well we like each other, that could have easily backfired ha ha!
- My Training Mojo – It well and truly ‘disappeared’ after my ultra-challenge in June – anything following June I really had to force myself to put my trainers on, I hated it. In fact if we hadn’t of started Run Together Whitefield, I’d have sat on my arse for 6 months! I’ve been active running the group, I’m always at the back, but at least I’m there and moving. But in 2020 I must try harder AND not let my mojo do a runner after my ultra-challenges.
You’ll notice there isn’t a lot of bad stuff, but this doesn’t mean I wasn’t sad sometimes or a little flat. I know I’m extremely lucky to lead the life I do and I appreciate it every single day. I also try and put myself in people’s shoes that are not living such a positive life.
The ugly (uncomfortable)
The low point for me this year was leaving behind a running group I had been with for a number of years and it had played a pivotal part in my life. I made numerous friendships and engaged in and utilised the support network in and around this group. I was a massive part of my life! Gosh this was tough, it was tough to make the decision, but clarity in my sober head meant I absolutely made the right decision to walk away from something I felt so passionate about. I had various concerns and so I was determined to do the right thing. What followed was such a lonely time and space, with lots of sleepless nights, I was absolutely sure I’d done the right thing morally, but I’d left and lost friends by walking away.
Looking forward to 2020 – Is the subject of tomorrow’s blog post and so for now, I wish you all a Happy New Year and thank you for the friendships and support this year.
Be safe and well, and have a great Tuesday night!
All Shiny & New Xx