Hit the Ground Running

1 March 2017

Hazel Darwin-Edwards writes about her thoughts during the half marathon the Starcatchers team ran to raise funds for the start of the Expecting Something project. 

On Saturday I ran a half marathon to raise money for Expecting Something along with a whole team from Starcatchers: raising heart rates, funds and expectations for the start of the project! In fact Katy and I did most of our pre-project-planning whilst training for it, pushing Katy’s baby in the buggy. With fresh air, fresh energy and relaxed focus for short bursts over time we’ve built up some really exciting ideas about where this project could lead and had some brilliant discussions about why it is so important and how we will work.

Here are some things I was thinking about while I was running on Saturday:

Mile 1: Getting started. It’s good to get going after all the build up, the worry and what ifs? A bit like I felt this week at the taster session, finally- here we go!

Mile 2: Finding the right pace. Breathing. Don’t rush off, take your time, it has to last. A bit like starting the project- feeling for the right rhythm in the workshops, pushing enough to do well, but not burn out.

Mile 3: The support. Just having someone standing, clapping and smiling gives you such a good feeling! A little encouragement really does go a long way. Isn’t that what our project is about?

Mile 4: Maybe I should write a blog about what I think about on the run. Will have to start remembering- it doesn’t have to be completely accurate, I could use poetic license. I don’t have to include all my thoughts, (can leave out the one about the giraffe party) just the relevant ones.

Mile 5: Katy- I’ve just seen her about to finish her half of the duo challenge and she’s done amazingly! She has found the time and energy to take this on, amid the running around she does looking after a wee baby and toddler. I feel so lucky to be working with her on Expecting Something– the first chance we’ve had to get properly stuck into a project together even though I love all her ideas.

Katy, Hazel and becky before the race

Mile 6: My mum. She has texted this morning saying she’s coming along. I am 32 years old, we no longer live together, sometimes we go a couple of weeks without even checking in with each other- but the connection we have is still so strong. She knows how important this is to me today. Isn’t that what our project is about?

Mile 7: Still thinking about my mum. I am so lucky.

Mile 8: Comparing yourself to others. Being in the middle of the pack- someone is always going to be ahead and someone else always behind. Running stronger when surrounded by others. Maybe there’s a bit of that in our project?

Mile 9: Love. Someone is running with a picture of a loved one they have lost on their t-shirt. People being the best they can be because they are doing it for someone they love. A mum making something for their baby, doing something they find hard for love… I’m getting tired and emotional now!

Mile 10: Babies. Jelly babies.

Mile 11: Wow. This is hard. You know that feeling when you’ve really stretched yourself… but we need to do that right? That’s how you build confidence… right? And I’m doing it, I am pushing myself, and I am nearly there. Maybe there is a bit of that in our project?

Mile 12: Big ambition: building up to something. I only took up running about a year ago and I remember I could only go as far as the corner. Then I went as far as the park, then the rock, then the top of the hill, now a blooming half marathon! I feel like I am actually going to make it to the finish. And we have time with Expecting Something to build it up, bit by bit, into something amazing. We’ll see how far we get… and if we just do a bunch of short runs/ small things that’s fine, but the ambition is lurking at the start of this project for something amazing to happen…

Mile 13: There she is! My mum waving! I love you mum!

The .1 of a mile extra bit: Woah- crowd, cameras, overwhelmed, tears, medal, Starcatchers team, cake…

team starcatchers post race