As a child I was always running around, racing classmates, chasing footballs, falling and scraping my knees. I even competed at county level in athletics at middle school.
But I hadn’t needed plasters on my legs since I was about nine. So I couldn’t believe it when I took two tumbles in one night out.
The resulting wounds and bruising to both legs threw me into a panic as I had just signed up for my first ever big run – the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon on Thursday, October 9.
I had been persuaded to take part by the memory of how much I enjoyed running when I’d taken it up again as an adult three years ago.
Since puberty hit I have never felt built for speed but discovered a joy in plodding through parks until gradually achieving 5k in a respectable 30 minutes. I loved the feeling of flying past mums with buggies and traffic jams and the comfort of knowing I was now fast enough to outrun unfit muggers or zombies.
But I fell prey to the classic cliché when I met my other half two years ago and swapped trainers for takeout and sweating for slobbing.
This half marathon was meant to be my big comeback ahead of two weddings next year. One where I’ll be a bridesmaid, the other a bride (no pressure then).
After falling before reaching the first hurdle, however, my spirits were low.
Thankfully The Wharf’s fitness guru Laura Williams swooped in to buoy me back up, reassuring me I was still in the running.
“Don’t worry, 16 weeks is plenty if you are planning just to get round the 13 miles rather than break any records,” she said. “If you start too early, by two of three weeks before the event, you might be fed up or have shin splints or pulled muscles.”
We agreed I should start improving my diet now, while my hard knocks are still healing.
She also recommended I think about how much time I can realistically commit to a training plan, when and where I’m gong to train, which strengthening exercises to do so I don’t get injured again, what type of trainers and workout gear I need and which supplements will help my body prepare and repair.
So here I am with four months to go, two massive plasters on one leg and daily applications of Arnica to the other. Wish me luck, or get in touch if you have any tips.
The ballot has closed for this year’s Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon, however entries for the corporate race, the Deloitte Corporate 13.1 are still open.
Follow my journey at wharf.co.uk or get in touch via email firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter @lily_laura