Before I was a runner I would always sit and watch the London marathon on TV like many people will this weekend. I would always look at those people running around London and wish I could do that. It was always just a dream for me to complete the distance until I met super-husband and decided to sign up for my first marathon.

Unlike the jelly babies I’m not going to sugar coat it, running a marathon is difficult, it’s mentally challenging, emotionally overwhelming and it hurts.

But it is an absolutely amazing feeling and since I finished the Brighton marathon last April I have been itching to try another. It must be like having a baby, they say you forget the pain of having a baby once you have the little one in your arms, perhaps it is the same once you have got your marathon medal and are “refueling” in the pub.

Why am I running another marathon? 

Everyone’s reasons & inspiration for running a marathon whether it be number one or number one hundred and one will be different and sometimes it is really difficult to explain exactly why we put ourselves through such a challenge. By sharing my personal reasons I hope that it gives you some insight and the inspiration to sign yourselves up for a race. I have never heard from anyone who has regretted the experience.

Geoff – If you’re reading this and thinking of signing up for a marathon, have a read of how to structure your long runs so that they really benefit your marathon performance Boost your marathon success

So here are my personal reasons for heading out for the 26.2 number two. And I am doing it twice, so it cannot be that bad can it.

To help & inspire others
My first marathon was for charity, I raised money for a local hospice which is close to my families heart. This time I am doing it for me but by blogging the experiences and training I hope it will encourage others to participate and realise that it’s not impossible and I love that I can maybe do that. Imagine if everyone stopped running marathons? Maybe no one would ever attempt the distance because it would just seem too scary? I guess by being crazy enough to keep that train going we are proving to people that everyone is capable of more than they think. The human body is pretty amazing and I love showing people that.

To challenge & push myself
Through school, college and university I was challenged, more intellectually as I was never very good at sports but by the very nature of education you are quizzed and tested on what you can achieve all the time. After I finished university I loved that I did not have to read big books or write any assignments or essays but that feeling soon wore off and I was looking for something else. Running fulfills that challenge in me. Since I crossed the first finish line I have been yearning to get back to the 26.2 distance. It was not that I was not proud of my first attempt, I was on cloud nine for months! But I know I can do better, so challenging myself to beat that personal best really excites me.

I love carbs, but my jeans do not. Pizza, garlic bread & a huge Chinese take away do not feel as bad after you have run 26 miles. It takes away all the guilt of my insatiable appetite. Running is an excellent way to keep fit and –  carb loading aside – lose weight too. I do not like the gym so running suits me perfectly, I love to be outside & I love to explore my surroundings and I can do that with marathon training & still have a sneaky treat.

I’m a magpie, I love shiny things. Not only do I love a new medal and a new technical tee for the collection but on top of that you are actually allowed to wear your medal with any outfit for at least 48 hours after your race. It’s race law I think and that feels pretty special.

The craziness!
Have you ever run around with a giant telephone or a rhino? (The rhino is a personal favorite.)  The crazy costumes always put the biggest smile on my face, it is one of few places that weird is accepted so beautifully. It is totally normal to be overtaken by a man dressed as a giant trainer and it always makes me giggle.

You’ve got to have faith!
Sometimes my faith in people is tested but marathons always always restore that faith for me. People you have never met will scream support at you and hi five you as you run past. Tip: Get your name on your top so they know what to shout out. A marathon is the perfect place to restore faith your in human beings.

And the clue was in the title, I really love jelly babies. I always have since I was little. If you haven’t run a marathon you might not know that these, for runners, are classed as fuel. Not only is it acceptable to scoff them for the entire 26.2 miles but you’ll probably be handed a fair few for free too. Yummy!

This post was inspired by @ukmarathonchat who are campaigning this marathon season to get people into running marathons. They are using the hashtag #YesICan over on Twitter, check it out! That is why I wanted to post about my personal reasons. My main reason for running number 2 is because I believe I can do better than I did last year, the question is can I? #YesICan! …at least that is what I will be telling myself, and that is half the battle.

I really believe anyone can run a marathon and so many people prove that every year.

A marathon accepts everyone, all different shapes, sizes & abilities whether your a rhino, a giant shoe or a superhero. You are all welcome. You do not get judged or ridiculed, only encouraged and supported. And it does not matter if you run, walk or crawl those miles in my book, you turned up. You are already bloody brilliant. ❤️‍

Come & be a marathon runner with us!

I’ll be running the Richmond marathon this September, you can follow my training & tantrums all on the blog & questions are always welcome. 😊