Esther’s Virtual Great North Run: 1 week to go

4th September 2020

Our Fundraiser in Wales, Esther, is taking part in the #GNRReimagined Virtual Great North Run on 13 September and is sharing her experience as the big day approaches. This week Esther plans her route and gets back into her running groove after the Bank Holiday.

With just over a week to go until I attempt to run the Virtual Great North Run, I am starting to question my sanity a little! But I am excited about the challenge and am embracing my newly discovered enjoyment of running, so I am not questioning too much!

I’ve not managed to find much time to run this week. Between Bank Holiday weekend camping, a visit to Bristol to see a friend, and re-adjusting to school routine with my son, my week has been a bit out of balance.

So I was rather surprised when my run this morning, the first since last week, was not only manageable, but very enjoyable! I took the same route as last week, but did it in reverse. I was quicker as I was able to run for much longer than last week, my breathing was much easier and my body seems to know how to run much more now.

I’ve been keeping the Bristol vibe going with my choice of music and ran listening to the Massive Attack radio playlist. The trip hop sounds are perfect for running to, just the right sort of pace and very uplifting!

When I logged into work after the run, a colleague had shared a post about different ways we can stimulate the production of wellbeing chemicals in the brain, and I worked out that I had achieved most of them during my run, which would explain why I felt so good! Exercise, music, being outdoors and feeling like you have achieved something all trigger the brain’s feel-good chemicals and make you feel better.

I have mapped out a route (pictured) that will allow me to hopefully cover the full length of the run. I live in the South Wales valleys, so it is quite a hilly route, but I am going to attempt to do it using the walk/run pattern of the running app I started using last week. I know I could easily walk the route in one session (my usual walks are easily half marathon length routes) so if all else fails I can walk it. Along the route I have mapped out there are also places I could stop to rest, catch a train home, stop for a cuppa at a friend’s house, or make an emergency ‘please take me home’ call! Hopefully I won’t need those and will be able to share my route completion with pride after the event! 

If you would like to sponsor me to help Music in Hospitals & Care improve the health and wellbeing of children and adults through live music, you can do so here.

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