I remember vividly when I set out on my journey how the training, eating well and living a 'healthier' life became a drug that some days I couldn't do without!
So how is everyone else doing?
Annmarie may not be doing as much training as she'd like but she still has a PT once a week and gets some other form of training on at least two other occasions during the week. She sometimes forgets that her journey started less than 8 months ago when she never did ANY exercise. We even go out regularly now and do interval training in preparation for Hull 10K and GNR (more about them later!)
She has suffered the most horrendous blisters whilst walking yet she carries on regardless, smiling and laughing until the finish and to me she is the epitome of a survivor and finisher. Credit where credit is due - she is a lady who is an inspiration to everyone who crosses her path! She completed our walk on Saturday as one of the strongest and certainly helped to get me over the finish line.
Katy . . . .
I know we all work hard but all you have to do is ring the office and you can almost guarantee that Katy is still there working hard. She never says no to anyone (a word that sometimes she really needs to learn!) and is always reliable and the best team player you could wish for. Mine & Katy's training regimes are very similar and it's a pleasure to go in the gym or out for a run with her. We seem to push each other along and work hard, far surpassing what we think is our best. Katy's knee was troubling her on Saturday but still she plodded on as one of the pace setters yet dropped back when she saw fit to encourage and help us all through.
Jane Sturdy (or Sturdster as she is now affectionately known) was up in her usual pace setting mode with Katy on Saturday. We often talk about the very first (fateful?) day when Jane and I went out for our walk. I mistakenly thought that because she had a dog (Willow), she was used to walking . . . . (WHOOPS) how wrong was I! 6.5 miles later both her and Willow where absolutely shattered but she very quickly got the bug and certainly proved on Saturday that she can now literally walk for hours with relatively little effort. Jane has probably surprised me more than any of the Follies because of the way she pushes her boundaries and sets herself new challenges that I don't think even she expects to meet! She has a very busy job as a community midwife yet always manages to fit in our walks between her work, her clients having babies at silly o'clock and her home life with Rachel. How she does this is beyond me but she never misses a walk or a meeting - she is so committed to changing her life and seems to thrive on it.
Jayne (Becks) is just a machine! Whatever you throw at her she will do. Again we go out regularly doing what we now call GNR training and whether she is on full form, half full or even if she is running on empty she will drag herself out and do what has to be done. Weighing less than she has done in years, Jayne can now count the inches she has lost as well - and I'm not talking about her height!! Hahaha!
Saturday was a tough tough day for her and she was ready to pull out after 2 miles but again true to form she soldiered on and completed the longest walk she has done. Jayne astounds me how she fits everything in, with work, home, home accounts, school governor, school, PTA and the Follies. I wonder where she finds the time to sleep never mind train!
I have always said that Ray and I are 2 halves of one-being and fit together like a glove but I think it goes further than that when we are out training or walking. Ray seems to be the pin that holds the Follies together. We joke that he is everyone's surrogate husband and I think he really is when we are out. We all seem to circle around changing 'company' on these walks but Ray seems to do the most circling and the talking. I sometimes wonder if he tells us all the same thing or if the conversation changes per person?! He puts everything he has into the Follies and that little bit more, God I love that man.
Me, well I have to admit I struggled on Saturday. I've had a muscle strain in my thigh that has been giving me jip and although I knew I wouldn't damage it on the walk it had a dull ache that didn't seem to want to go away and leave me alone. Along with that and the extremely dry skin on my feet that has been cracking and bleeding for the past week (no matter how much moisturiser I used) I was in pretty bad form. Everyone carried me through on Saturday and I can't thank them enough.
I think that with the laughing, talking and singing that we all did, we carried each other along through our bad times and it also aided to helping us float through the good times.
Saturday was obviously our biggest tester yet with the Moonwalk only 40 days away. What I was pleased with more than anything was that at the finish, we all said we still had another 6 miles left in us and that was with Jane and me not on top form. After speaking to everyone the next day, we all felt fantastic with very few aches and pains (if any). It's proved that all the training we have done to date has paid off and the short fast walks we still have planned from now to the Moonwalk will simply add to our fitness and speed on the night and of course, help our recovery even more. . . . . . Just think we may even end up going out "in heels" to celebrate - but not Ray of course!? heehee