I have always hated running with a passion, mostly because I was a swimmer and despite being very fit in the water, I was pretty useless out of it, and I was quite content with the fact that running would never be for me.
As I went through university, swimming decreased, dancing decreased, then I got a car and stopped cycling, and before I knew it, I was firmly in the "sedentary" category...
Enter my good friend Jessie - she had never done any sport unless it was under duress, but now she told me that she'd been running for nearly two months with the C25k plan and was about to graduate!
Despite my anti-running policy, I was impressed and if she could do it, why couldn't I?
So I began. I bought myself a proper pair of trainers and started running in secret after work - I didn't want anyone to see me!
The first run was terrible: I hadn't charged my mp3, so I was running with my phone, using the stopwatch function to try to time the running/walking. Not ideal.
I'd like to say that it got easier over those first few weeks, but it didn't - every time I thought it was feeling easier, Laura upped the time and I would be left feeling completely dead, again.
I was 100% determined to finish the plan (if Jessie could do it, then so could I!) but I doubted whether it would ever feel easy or enjoyable.
Around week 6, however, something weird happened - I found myself sitting at my desk, looking forward to my run... I'm not sure if it was the beautiful autumn colours, or my body being grateful that I was actually using it properly, but I wanted to get my trainers on and listen to Laura.
It was still hard work, and I still felt knackered after each run, but I started enjoying the feeling of running and the progress I was making.
Fast forward to last Saturday: I'd been running on my own, in secret, since September, I'd finished the C25k podcasts, but I knew that I still hadn't made it to 5k, and now I was in the middle of the starting crowd at my local ParkRun...
...and it was the best thing EVER!!! I couldn't believe the lovely, friendly, supportive, community-spirited people all over the place - I felt so welcome and I finally felt like a runner!
I managed to get round the entire 5k without stopping or walking, and I finished in a time of 33:45 Not bad for someone who hated running as much as I did!!!
This is the first fitness-related goal that I've actually succeeded with, and I'm so excited to see how much more I can accomplish!