Name: Simon Cook Age: 22 Height: 6’0 Weight: 14st 6lbs
Running Ability: Amateur. Run on a fairly regular basis but with no real structure.
I’ve always considered myself to be active. For years I participated in sports – taking part in football, golf and cricket – to prevent boredom. But as the years have gone by, a change of emphasis in my social life has led to decreasing fitness levels. Sunday morning football was replaced with the occasional, and somewhat less competitive, 5 a side game. The Saturday morning round of golf gave way to the Saturday morning hangover, and my only game of cricket in the past 3 years involved a tennis ball and pan in a friend’s flat!
“Ironically, despite studying Sports and Exercise Science, the workload of the degree depleted my exercise levels further. Despite all this I still had my running. Until now.”
Over the past few months, a lot has changed. From starting full time work, with plenty of overtime, to moving in and out of flats, all while trying to plan in some travelling. The list goes on, but the key point is my focus was diverted. Exercise became decreasingly important. Couple that with the bout of shin splints that kept me from doing anything for a couple of months and things started getting bad. Whereas previously I would run 5 times a week, I now run twice. On a good week. At times the last thing I want to do when I get in from work is run. Instead I sit on the sofa and eat. By my own admission I have become lazy and unmotivated.
I chose to ignore the fact that my jeans felt a little tighter, or my shape was becoming a little more bloated. Even staring down at the scales as they hit a weight I’ve never reached before didn’t give me the kick start I needed.
Apparently 80% of adults in the UK do not meet Government exercise guidelines. And I am now one of them.
When I saw a GNR post from The Children’s Foundation on the work notice board, it was the kick up the arse I needed. I realised what I required to regain structure to my training was a target. I often find myself watching the GNR, being moved by motivation behind the people and have always thought running for a good cause is the priority of the event. Therefore I am honoured to be running for The Children’s Foundation. Working at the RVI, I see a lot of the good work the Foundation do, but there is still a long way to go.
The GNR has always been a goal of mine and this appeared to be my way in. I immediately began mapping out routes using walkjogrun.net. Suddenly my enthusiasm returned and I couldn’t wait to hit the streets and run along the Quayside at night. With views that good it’s amazing how much the pain subsides. For now I am only taking small steps – starting off with 4 mile runs and slowly progressing as I get more comfortable. The aim is to run a 15 mile distance every month, to check my progress and give me preparation beyond what I require, so my focus on the day can be beating my target. At this point my goal is simple. On Sunday 7th September 2014 I aim to run the GNR in under 90 minutes. More long term, I want to get back into a routine and enjoy my running again. Oh well, best get going….
Simon is running in aid of The Children’s Foundation and is hoping to reach his target of £225. Click here to visit his sponsorship page.