In Lockdown With Bella is a new series of blogs from members of Bellahouston Harriers aimed at providing an insight into running life during the coronavirus pandemic.
In the latest blog in the series, Linda Wood reflects on the club's April virtual time trial, and Darren Shields explains how he swapped 26 miles for 26 hills for a good cause.
By Linda Wood
So, by this time of the year, I was hoping to be summer race ready. Now it’s more like “once round the block” ready. However, always up for a challenge, me.
The club virtual time trial beckoned – Tuesday was a glorious day, weather wise. Being a big feartie, I avoided the club's usual Pollok Park route, and went for flat, flat, flat. The southern perimeter of Bellahouston on a there and back course sounded much more fun.
Mile 1 – Wow, I feel amazing, this is going great, I’m flying!
Mile 2 – What the £$%* is going on? Why am I running through treacle? Why are the people I pass not wearing hi-viz and cheering me on?
I was rescued by Jasmine and Darren (and baby Jack) on the other side of the road waving to me. Thanks, guys! You got me to the end of mile 2 with a spring in my step. Club mates always pull you through.
I read this week of a Harrier legend, John McGough, and his many great achievements. I think that, if the spirit of John can come through the ages to us during this time, we won’t be doing too badly after all. Nil Desperandum!
By Darren Shields
26? 26 hill reps of Hamilton Ave, what was I thinking?
Usually on a Tuesday or Thursday night night I would be moaning at John, Becky or a stand-in coach about doing 10 reps! So why 26? Well, for charity.
The Virgin Money #TwoPointSixChallenge where you challenge yourself to complete an amount of reps or a distance which includes a two and a six, and then make a donation to a charity of your choice, all in aid of helping charities all across the country who normally get sponsorship money at this time of year, but due to coronavirus the races cannot take place. The London marathon raised over £66 million for good causes in one day last year.
The charity I choose to donate to was Prostate Cancer UK, the same charity for which I was due to run the Berlin marathon this September before its postponement was announced last week. The charity do loads of great work and have helped family and friends over the years so I was more than happy to help raise some sponsorship for them.
I created a Virtual 10k with medal and certificate to help with it, to which lots of Harriers joined. It was great listening to everyone's stories of a 10k along a canal path, a couple of park runs or even my own Mum going out and walking the distance to receive her first ever medal!
Due to the lockdown and the amazing work the NHS have been doing I also took part in a #run5donate5nominate5 along with lots of other Harriers...Separately of course, maintaining social distance, to help raise money for the NHS Charities. It was great to get out and run a 5k for a good cause, plus you get to nominate 5 others to take up the challenge.
I took up running about 3 years ago and I have enjoyed being able to use the challenges and races I do to be able to raise money. In a strange way it makes the races easier, because I know deep down no matter how hard it gets I would never give up knowing I am helping others.
So whether it's 5k, a half marathon or 26 hills, I look forward to my next challenge.
Pain is temporary. Pride is forever.
My last word will be to say thank you to everyone who has entered the Virtual 10k or sponsored me over the last 3 years. Your generosity is amazing and has made a great difference to others.