It was after a couple of glasses of red wine that the words "I would love to run the Everest Marathon next year” spilled out of my mouth. The next morning I woke up with a feeling of slight disbelief. What I had signed up for?! As someone who had never really run in a race before apart from the odd charity 5k’s here and there, it is without a doubt the most ambitious challenge I have ever signed up to. Nevertheless I knew this challenge is going to be great for me, even life changing.
The Scene of the Crime
The truth is that since my husband Rhys and I returned from our last expedition in 2014 where we climbed the highest mountain in the Arctic Circle, I have been desperate to find something else to challenge me in the same way. Something which will give me the drive and determination to get out there and train even when the nights draw in, and it's cold and dark outside. Something with an end goal that would keep me motivated and determined. The marathon sounded perfect.
So I started training, at first by myself but I was finding it extremely hard. I found it difficult to find places to run and then when I started running I found myself only 500 metres from where I'd started, keeling over unable to catch my breath. It was then that I wondered if I had been too ambitious and bitten off a little more than I could chew. After speaking to my mum about my struggles, she recommended that I join a running club.
So my big challenge starts with the super iconic London Marathon on 23rd April, in the company of elite athletes, dedicated fundraisers, and probably more than a few crazy costumes. Then 1 month and 1 week later, I'll be tying my laces at Mount Everest Base camp, over 5,300m above sea level, ready for the world's highest marathon. Two weeks after that, I'll be in Canada, running the Banff Marathon and with any luck not being eaten by any of the long list of "dangerous wildlife which may be encountered" (and yes it includes bears and wolverines!). Then I have a summer at home, before a busy Autumn, running Patagonia in September, Australia in October, Antarctica in February, and Kilimanjaro later the same month.
I've been overwhelmed by some of the early support I've received, most of all to the very generous person who would like to remain anonymous, but who has donated a third of the project costs to get it started.
I'm also thrilled that an award winning PR company, Pic PR are supporting the whole project, and that Suunto have sent me their top of the range sports watch. I'm also really excited to be an Ambassador for Ellis Brigham, who run a vast network of top quality outdoor shops selling everything I'll need for my challenges, and much, much more.
So, that's it for now. Back from 5 weeks skiing and time to raise my game on the treadmill, on the pavements and in the hills!