Today we have a guest blog from one of my team. Veronica Georgescu is a Health Improvement Officer workign with the team in Barnet. Her story about how she started running is really inspiring.
I came to running from a very dark place. I was very unfit and unhealthy, doing no exercise at all for many years except when commuting to and from work. My blood pressure was high as well as my cholesterol level (the total was a shocking 7mmol/l). Both my parents and my younger sister died of heart disease. For many reasons/excuses, I could not commit myself to go to the gym. I remember, walking up the hills in Harrow or even a small flight of stairs would leave me panting. Then in the summer of 2012, I joined a running club – Metros – because I wanted to change my life.
Six months later, I run 3 X 10K and 2 X 10 miles races and got a very good performance. It got me hooked. On average I now run 3-4 times per week, about 7 - 8 miles a day, took part in many races and even got a bronze medal in a 10 miles race.
I cannot say that I am a fast runner. In the beginning it was a bit daunting by how much mental energy it took me to finish a race, but I was prepared to be more focused in the future.
Another reason for starting up running was seeing my 2 children taking part in the ‘Iron man’ triathlon in Wales – Pembrokeshire coast (140.9 miles – swimming, cycling and running). While supporting my children on the day, I saw many contestants my own age and even older taking part, so the competitive side of me told me that it would be great if I could do at least a smaller triathlon. So I started polishing my swimming techniques and joined the running club.
Before I joined the club, I imagined a team of young, athletic people running and I felt a bit embarrassed, however, my embarrassment disappeared once I started; all the other runners were so supportive with the beginners. I loved the fact that whatever your background, age and your level of training, you were part of a very supportive team. There is great camaraderie, and many have become good friends.
As I settled into my running routine, I am enjoying more and what is more important, my health is great, and hopefully next year will be able to do a triathlon with my boys. At the moment I just love running in beautiful places and meeting up with friends and fellow runners. Also I am looking forward for my first marathon!
I wish I had known how exhilarating it is to race – I would have done it sooner. Doing also a marathon will tick all the boxes and I will try to do that for as long as I’m able to run.