So as this post is written, there are 18 days remaining until I run the Great Bristol Run. “I” being Rob, one of the Trustees of this amazing charity that serves to help those in the community who are struggling. The charity that through everything, even a global pandemic – has continued to see over 135 people a week and flourishes to this day.

As one of the board members, you might think it’s all been great for me – but I too have had my own personal struggles – serious addiction, mental health and some days, that feeling of desperation. How are things ever going to get better? It is a miracle I am even alive, has been said a few times. But I am. I fought and now I choose to give back to others. I really do have a great life these days.

But when the Covid-19 pandemic hit, my day job at Somewhere House – an addiction rehab centre, required me to try to the best of my ability, to keep myself and also the clients I work with, out of the pandemic’s way. We did it but it was at a cost. I struggled – like all of us – the isolation, the lockdowns, the uncertainty. My go to? Food. I put on a lot of weight and eventually decided in Feb 2021 that I had to do something about this. How could I care for others if I am not caring for myself?

This is where the running comes in. At first, I’ll be honest – I hated it. But like my battles with addiction, I fought with it and stuck with it and over time, saw that not only was the weight shifting but that my thoughts and ability to process and think about stuff, was clearer. The fitter I got, the more I pushed myself.

I know I thought, let’s run a half marathon. So, just over 18 months later – that is what is happening.

Have I trained hard? Yes, like you cannot imagine. At times, I have over trained and been rightly challenged for this. That person knows who they are, and thank you. I shouldn’t even be able to run, let alone a half marathon. A serious knee injury in 2008 and 5 operations, should say it all but today, I am able to run free, and love every previous minute of it.

I literally have given the training everything and now, barring injuries and illness – it will become a daunting exhilarating reality. I am excited and also scared about it – but intend to enjoy every minute of it, no matter what.

Yes I have a personal goal time in mind – but I will respectfully keep that a secret! Until afterwards.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me, listened to me droaning on about running this and running that – gadgets, shoes, trainer socks and even hi vis gear!

This is my fundraising link – please support it if you can – needless to say, all money raised is going directly to the charity and will support children and young people with counselling.

Thank you all

Rob x