Slightly later than anticipated, I'm taking a look back at 2017 and looking forward into 2018. I know that Blogland is full of this kind of post at this time of the year, so apologies if you've already read lots and have had your fill!
Last year was an incredible year for me. Amongst all the sadness and grieving, I achieved some things that I never thought possible. With a dislike of sport and very bad memories of cross country running from my school days, I decided that I wanted to run a race in Mr JK's memory and raise some money for the British Heart Foundation. I didn't even own a pair of trainers at the time. So I joined the gym and started training. Taking part in the Great North Run, the world's largest half marathon, in September was an unbelievable experience...
... something that I couldn't have done without the support of new friends from the gym. Whoever would have thought that I'd be having to reorganise my clothes to fit in a drawer full of sports kit, or worrying about whether or not I've pressed the button on my Garmin watch to record a run?! I'm sure my antics have made Mr JK smile!
One month later, I was able to run in Mr JK's footsteps in York, completing the Yorkshire 10 mile race a year after Mr JK's final run, the Yorkshire marathon. I didn't ever think that I would be able to do anything like that and I know that Mr JK would be so proud of me and probably pretty surprised too! My JustGiving page has gone from strength to strength and the total currently stands at an amazing £4117. Do take a look at it because it tells more of my running story. And if you'd like to make a donation to help fight against heart disease, that would be really lovely of you. Thank you.
I was able to meet up with Twitter running friends who supported me over the year. So good to be able to put faces to names!
And of course I had my own support team from the gym who have been just unbelievable. I couldn't have done it without them. Their friendship has helped me enormously over the last 12 months.
Spotting myself on the TV coverage of the Yorkshire marathon and 10 mile event was a little surreal as was seeing myself in Women's Running magazine. I was honoured that the runner Susie Chan wanted to interview me and tell my story. I would never have imagined that I'd see myself in a running magazine!
Another proud moment was presenting a trophy to the winner of the Kings Forest 50km event in November. I was so honoured that the organisers wanted to remember Mr JK in this way.
|Photo thanks to Positive Steps|
Running gave me something positive to focus on during very sad and difficult times. It made me feel closer to Mr JK and I'm certain he was there running alongside me during my races, pushing me on towards the finish line. I certainly needed that focus as I have found it very hard to concentrate on things over the last year. My knitting output has been pitiful; I'm very thankful to be one of Stylecraft's Blogstars and designed two pairs of socks for their Head over Heels range of sock yarn. One was released early in 2017 and the other will be released any time now. I also designed a pair of slipper socks for the annual Blogtour and my first crochet pattern which appeared in Crochet Now magazine.
|Picture copyright - Stylecraft|