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Thursday, 31 May 2012

A little bit of this....

Err, hello there... so I have been a bit of what some call 'a bad blogger' despite having copious amounts of time to sit down and blog away, there has always been something else to take my mind away from the job in hand... *oooh sofa*  If it's not getting home from work knackered mentally, its the physical side of things with running training, then all in all when I finish for the day at 8:30pm, I really cannot be bothered to feed myself, let alone blog.... No excuse I know, but gah, I still haven't found 'the balance' yet..I'm sorry.... forgive me?

So, moving on, how are you all? Go on, tell me a story.... As for me, aside from being the laziest beast ever, I have some new and exciting things to show and tell, are you sitting comfortably? Operation Run This Town is well and truly underway, with both myself and the other members putting training into action big style and not only have we been running our little legs off (and sweating WAY too much) we now have a logo

Oh yes, isn't that just a whole load of kick-ass, I think so. Mahoosive thanks to Cat (@catreenie) for doing all the hard work and the lush Sam (@samcentric)  for getting all of it into action. Training for me is going alot better than it has been doing previously - I'm back to running with no walking breaks and also stretching like a god damn banshee before+after every run.... I'm getting there that's for sure. It's not easy but there is progress, and the help and support of my fellow #RunThisTown crew is def helping (we all need a kick up the ass sometimes right) There is still time people to get involved - whether you are situated in Newcastle or not and if you are a runner but don't class yourself as one, you can still be part of our crew! Get yourself over to Sam's site for more info HERE Now I'm up and running and averaging 4+ miles every other day, I need to get me on another half mara training plan - anyone got any ideas?

Next up, I'm talking swag.... Nike swag to be exact. And yes, this has something to do with the above, but after simply making do with only one pair of Nike running socks and continuously washing them everytime I wore them I decided to stop. It was high time I got me some new socks.... and trainers... and, err, clothes. Yep, you're right I couldn't stop myself, who knew Nike had so much nice stuff! 

Look at those trainers huh!?! I've bored pretty much everyone already about these babies but yeah, seriously look at them!! I shall be doing another blog post in detail about all my Nike swag, but lordy do I feel good when I'm running!

As well as spending (too) much money on my running habit, it made for a nice day out in London with my brother: As well as seeing the sights and shopping the shops, we had the most gorgeous sunny picnic in St James park... perfect... 

After a glorious weekend and the return to work in the heat inevitable, it seemed like everything was going to be just a little bit dull in comparison, so imagine my absolute joy when my very own pair of self designed shoes came winning their way to me from the lovelies at Upper Street Shoes.... more on this soon

So, all in all you could say I've been busy. Busy with work, busy with life and busy with getting my life back to a schedule..... who says being an adult isn't fun...

What have you been up to?

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Wednesday Shoe-Lust...

And so Nicholas Kirkwood graces the Wednesday Shoe-Lust post again. The guy can do no wrong to both my eyes and my feet. These patent leather-trimmed satin lovelies are a bit of a show-stopper, and if I had these babies on my feet there is a rather large chance I'd be tripping myself up due to staring at my feet so much. Granted, at a mere £695 I am not so sure my bank balance will agree with my love for these, but you cant take away the fact they really are a attention grabber.

Nicholas Kirkwood
Patent Leather Trimmed Sandals

Monday, 21 May 2012

Monday's Must - Have's - Jubilee Edition

I used to do a Monday Must-have a while ago, but the slacker in me used to forget, however I'm bringing in back (like Justin Timberlake and his sexy back) and featuring all my must-have items every Monday. Whether it be cups, saucers, shoes or dresses, there is bound to be something here for everyone. This week it's ol' the Queen's Jubilee edition.

Having a street party, or if like me, just a back garden party, below are the needs and must for every hostess with the err most-ess for a grand shindig

What are your plans for the Jubilee? 

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Waiting for a high Summer...

Yes, I am still waiting..... so come on then, which one of you lot stole the Sun, actually which one of you stole the entire Summer season? right now, it's mid-May and err, I'm sat with a blanket wrapped round me - yeah, real sunny.

So, just in case you haven't been bored enough with the 'must-see' Summer wardrobe, I'm just going to rub the 'non sun' bit in that little bit more. This Summer, the shoe really does take on a life of its own - and the wedge is featuring way up high on the must-buy list. Think statement wedges in higher than high heel height, prints, standout colours and different fabric textures. The other great thing about wedges is they are much more easier (read: comfier) to walk in. So not quite as many of those 'incidents' when walking on cobbles, yes you know what I mean.

Wedges this year have well and truly grown up - I always used to see this style of shoe as a bit 'teenager' Not quite old enough to wear 'real' heels but these wedges are fierce. In colour combinations you wouldn't expect to see and the sheer crazy height of the heels makes me feel a little sick. Here are my picks of the best this Summer.

Now all we need is some sun so I can flash my toes.....

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Accepting the issue...

Today was one of those occasions that could be compared to a bolt of lightening, a slap round the face or a kick in the gonads. My very lovely friend Sam posted a blog post that really did touch my heart, about women and the long standing issue of weight and acceptance - HERE 

We all know the old argument about how us fairer sex feel about our figures, bodies, weight and looks - even the males of this world know all about it and that is, us women have not exactly accepted ourselves and the way we look. Sam puts it plain and simple about the way in which us females spend most of our lives trying to be something that quite frankly we are not. Magazine's are heavily featuring 'Bikini diets' just in time for Summer and if thinking about donning a bikini wasn't bad enough, there is nothing like your monthly read pointing out exactly what you need to do with your body and how to look.... Fad diets and the idea of an ideal body are literally seeped into every pore of a female, even from a very early age, and this is what it is like every day, every hour. Why? Why do we believe what others say? Why do we even care so much? These are the questions I asked myself as I read Sam's blog post and for me, I support every single darn thing that Sam writes. However, as much as I support and agree with her, for me and my life and my views on myself, I cant quite get there.

I spend every day worrying/wondering/mentally beating myself up about the way I look. Yeah, I'm a chatty girl, I smile alot, I don't publicly moan about the way I look, but inside I am nowhere near what I want and perhaps even feel I should be. I wake up of a morning and like lots of others I'm sure, I could cry at what I see when I undress, what I see in the mirror and most of all when I have to pick an outfit to wear. I jokingly tell people that if I had the money I would have plastic surgery. Y'see, they all think I'm joking, but I'm not. In a heartbeat I would do it. Everything I eat I know the cal content so y'know as you do, I mentally beat myself up later on in the day about what I've eaten, on my walk to the train station I can never quite get it out of my head that maybe people are driving past commenting on my thighs/bum/belly/bingo wings........ Before you all start thinking I am crazy,, I do know that in my heart of hearts those people aren't thinking about that and I have nothing in this world to complain about. Some may call me selfish for the way I feel and act about myself when in fact, I'm a healthy woman, with on paper, everything going for her. You can call me that, I'll let you have it, but every darn day and night I wonder when my time will come. When I can wake up and be happy - look at myself and accept exactly what it is I have grown into. I'm 28 and I thought that by 25 I'd be there at that point: where I'd love what I was but I don't. It's no-one's fault, I haven't been deprived of love or affection but it is me who feels the way I feel, it is me who curses myself for simply something that is just naturally 'me'.

Sam's blog post made me wake up and realise exactly what I need to become but also made me sad. I bury my head in the sand, I'm good at things like that. I gloss over how I feel and pretend that what I think and feel in my head and heart doesn't exist. I'm not writing this blog post to get sympathy, I don't want you to feel sorry for me or tell me I'm 'this and that' I want you to read both mine and Sam's blog post and take it in. The life I'm leading, where I waste every day on such worthless feelings and emotions. I read Sam's post and was in  awe of who she was and what she stated there on her blog for everyone to see - that isn't easy. She's given me hope and made me know that it is ok to like and learn to love me for who I am, just the way I am. That is a special thing.

I hope that you realise the flip side of Sam's post with how I feel about myself, but I also want you to put down the Vogue, Elle, Glamour features that tell you to slim down, eat less and get a flat stomach. Remember, the day you were born you were just you, carry on living your life in that very same way.

I sure as hell hope I can get there too...

Monday, 14 May 2012

An Ode to....Simon Cowell's chest

Normally when you think of exposing chests, it's all about Page 3, men everywhere have a daily ogle at the latest blonde (exposing) bombshell, but it's not these bosom buddies that have caught my eye, oh no, there is a new breed of chest wonder on the scene....... Simon Cowell, this is my ode to you.

There I was, sat down with a mouthful of cheesecake on a Saturday night, watching a family orientated show... and what on earth springs up to greet me, oodles of chest hair. Dark, hairy, slightly greasy looking chest hair belonging to Lord of the land Simon Cowell. Normally this wouldn't bother me: a little sprig of chesticle hair is normally quite pleasurable viewing (even if its shown during a family show and whilst I'm eating cheesecake) and I sometimes even find it quite erotic, that was until I choked on my cheesecake at just how much hair was there. It was like Lord Simon had visited the latest joke shop and purchased an XL version chest hairpiece, or had stolen the nearest rug from backstage. It then got me thinking, this isn't the first time Mr Cowell has over-exposed his hairy man boobs to me, in fact I think it's a regular occurrence. On holiday in the Caribbean, he's there, hair out, shades on putting people off their pina colada's, on some big yacht (yknow what they say about a man's big yacht...) giving the bevvy of beauties an (hairy) eyeful, and even in January he was there freezing his niplets off in the snow - mind you the sheer amount of fuzz probably kept him warm.

My guess is that, as Simon cannot seem to keep a woman, the showing off of the hair is a sign of 'caveman' look-at-me kinda status. Obviously us women really will throw our panties in the air at the sheer sight of some fluffiness, there is more delightful than running your fingers through a mans chest hair to get your ring caught in it...sexual... Or perhaps Mr Hair himself wants to go back to being 'the Don' and is missing his favourite medallion that he can wear dangling from his hairy bits. But it's not just the hair that gets to me, look at his shirts. Jeez, I don't even own bra's that are cut as low as his shirts, and hey, if judging by Saturday night's actions, if the shirts ain't already low enough, lets just un-do it more on live TV.. Britain HAS got Talent right? I'm pretty sure the Hairy wonder now has shares in the "low-cut shirt company" with him acting as financier and Director, but again, Why? Does it make it easier for you to get dressed and undressed? Is it easier to iron a shirt with no buttons, or is it just because you have so much hair on your chest there is no way on this Earth you could do your shirt up in the first place?

Quite frankly I don't think I will ever understand what makes Simon (and some women) think this is a good look, surely this is just the same as me getting my hairy legs out? no? oh. That, Simon you hairy monster, was for you. 

When a star is born...

Like everyone else I was glued to the TV on Saturday. I love a good talent show and both The Voice and Britain's Got Talent make for really good TV in my eyes, yeah so what? Well, with the final of BGT on Saturday came the big 'who will win' question.

We all know and for me am super happy that cutesy Pudsey and his trainer Ashleigh won the show - that is some seriously talented dog and the hours of training that Ashleigh must've put in was worth winning in her own right. For me though, the real winner of BGT was Ryan O'Shaughnessy. The singer/songwriter who aired early on in the audition stages is my definition of a star. The way he writes a song, sings it from the heart, and doesn't need anything else but his guitar - that is talent. I remember hearing his audition piece and getting goosebumps - the song had such meaning and was sung with such a heart-felt desire I was literally mesmerised. It's not often that I  fall in love with singers on these talent shows - I often find that they aren't really themselves: but Ryan was just there, with his guitar, and performing. It was obvious to anyone watching that this guy is going to be a superstar, and I really hope he does go far, although a part of me is scared they'll take away what he does best: be himself - what was shown on BGT.

For me, the song he performed in the finale made me feel about a million different emotions all at once, and yeah, I had to rewind and play again. For many reasons the words and emotions in that song mean alot to me. I am also a stickler for a bit of romance and soppiness.

If you didn't catch it and want to see what I'm harping on about, see the clip below.

Just pure amazing...

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Going back...

Well, the run was done. Yep, I finally made it back out onto the open road on Bank Holiday Monday after having just over a month off (as I've rambled on about here) and boy oh boy it wasn't easy. There is def something to be said that running starts in the mind. I think from the first day I decided to don the trainers my journey had begun in my head rather than with my tree-trunk legs. I am naturally a little defeatist and adding that into the mix with a new activity pretty much meant my brain said 'no' when it came to running even 'if' my body was saying yes. After realising in truth, my legs weren't going to fall off after I first ran (who knew!?) my brain got a little better at accepting the fact that I could, possibly, maybe, even do this.

Don't get me wrong my ability to self doubt myself really 'is' second to none but I think after the initial run's and getting through the first few months, it became easier: I was less out of breathe, less aches and overall it was getting 'easier, and I even thought about the 'bad' things alot less. Fast forward almost a year, and well, the feeling's don't change. Every time I go out to run, it is almost a war of words up stairs in my head, the same questions go on "How will it feel, how far can I run, will I be fast.. the list is endless, and on Monday's run there was a fear in me that I hadn't quite felt before. Not only was I scared for the normal reason's and normal self doubts but there was a new low etched right in the back of my brain..... coming back after injury the fear was different, a genuine scared feeling that taking that one step outside will bring the pain/injury/problems back - forget it I hear you say? I couldn't. Running to me is like clothes shopping to some, getting that new elusive lipstick, getting the new iphone/ipad to others - running is so much more than just a physical activity, it's a mental, up in my head kinda thing - and it was the mental activity that made Monday, and that first run back, so scary. I know in my mind getting over an injury is going to be slow and more often than not, arduous but what I find hard to cope with is my ability to no longer run with speed or with ease. This is by no means how it's always going to be, but for the time being, me and my legs are back to a run/walk plan and up in my head this is failure. I know in my heart its not, but with every step outside, in view of the whole world (well, Berkshire) I'm the novice that can only walk/run......why brain, why?

I'm on the road to recovery and god dammit will I work my ass off all for the Great North Run, but me and my head are not going to find it easy.........

And the nominees are...

*drum roll* Ok, I kinda hate to do this, but I'm going to anyway, so here goes! It's that time of year again when I get on my hands and knees (think the scene from Clueless "You don't understand, this is an Alaia") and beg for your help. No, I don't need your money (that ones coming next) but I do need those clicks of your mouse. For the last couple of years the Cosmopolitan Blog Awards have been getting bigger and better each year and you know what, I want in! The Cosmo Blog Awards were one of the first blogger award ceremonies and despite what any blogger says/types everyone wants some kind of recognition, and I know I do. Normally I shy away from anything that involved a public vote (I was always picked last for the rounders team at school) but not this time.

Now, I don't claim to be the best blogger: I don't blog 'that' often and sometimes my posts are a little half hearted, but what I do do, is try to write from my heart and what is real to me and my life. I don't find talking about how wonderful I/my blog is an easy thing to do, and as above it think you'll see pointing out my mistakes is way easier but my blog, like me, has grown up alot over the nearly 3 years it's been going and yes it's not always been to easy to fit blogging in along with working full-time, but I love this blog like it was one of my own animals (I don't have kids) so at the risk of sounding full of myself I think it would be ruddy marvellous to be nominated in 'Best Lifestyle Blog' category. I know I don't stand a hope in hell in winning but to be nominated would be like winning in itself.

If any of you readers would be most kind, please feel free to head on over to Cosmopolitan's website (Click on the picture below) and vote for me, I cant promise you any pressies, but you certainly will put a smile on my face (what do you mean that's not enough!?)

Monday, 7 May 2012

Gearing it up for Summer...

Hopefully when you're reading this I should be either out running, or have been for my first run back....... keep those fingers crossed for me! To help not only me, but also you lot, yes even you in your pj's,get the motivation to get out there running, why not at least look good doing it. 

I don't mean not sweating, cos let's face it girls - Look pretty on rest days is the only motto you need, but I mean wearing the right kinda clothes. No-one wants to be that woman who already feels bad and self-conscious when out for a run in their old sweats that are doing nothing for the figure and not supporting you and your run. As a through and through life devotee to the joys of Dri-FIT - yes it is a little unforgiving, but the fact is, you are out there running, no-one else and why not do it looking good! When Summer comes and the heat increases it is time to reduce the layers and even think about getting the legs out! My wardrobe is currently filled to the brim of black, full length trousers and tee's - yes I pretty much look like a nun........ nuns on the run.... ha! anyway, I have been busy checking out my Mecca, Nike, and their new Summer collection and it is gooooood.

Following on from the successful launch of the Nike Free running shoe, the clothing side fits in nicely with the element of 'bright, breezy, free, kinda nature. The range is as always, light, airy and breathable that fits you are your running perfectly. Normally, as above, I am a black running leggings kinda girl, black is safe, slimming and err, invisible, but looking more and more at coloured running gear I get a real sense of motivation and part of me wants people to look at me, I'm proud I'm out there running. So why not make it loud and proud, I completely blame Nike for this, but I'm pretty darn sure I will be ditching the black and getting colourful.

Oh yes, even me and my less than perky bum are tempted to try these. For me, I hate those running shorts that are a bit flappy.... I always think they add far too much bulk to the thigh (like I need anymore) perfect for comfort, style on either road, track or trail. In everyone's fave Dri-FIT fabric with a fold-over elastic waist with interior drawcord and cute mesh sides, a total bargain at £22.00

A perfect matching top to go with the Tempo knit short, I love the simple boxing style of this vest, again with the Dri-FIT fabric, the vest has got re-inforced seams to keep you truly in place and with the scoop neckline, armholes and racerback it makes it really easy to move arms and give you a full range of movement. Sometimes I really do hate it when you feel constricted in a t-shirt that you're wearing! 

I love the colour schemes of both of these and granted, I'm not sure anyone out there is quite ready to see my thighs or bingo wings, I am more likely to want to go out running if I'm dressed with style and I think this is something that Nike do well - as well as making sure the clothes technically do something.

What do you run in? would you be willing to wear these?

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Feeling the fear and Run This Town...

I have currently been avoiding looking at my ever expanding waistline, reading the motivational running tweets and have well and truly shut away my trainers. After beginning to get excitable about getting myself back into running and after a good 2 weeks worth, my motivation and legs were bought back down to Earth with a bump. That pain that stopped me previously, was back. I had been diagnosing myself via Google, yes Google and had come to the conclusion that my issue was my Achilles and rest was the best option, and rest I did, until the pain became too bad to even begin to put weight on my right leg, bending was excruciating and standing on my tip toes was just never gonna happen, I cried alot, not just through the pain but because I couldn't understand why the ruddy hell this was happening to me. Was it me, the way I run, something I'm doing? or was it just my bodies way of telling me that you know what, I'm just never going to be a runner.

With two other Half Marathon's and a 10K planned for this year, I have alot riding on my legs and alot riding on these runs - not just physically, but mentally too. I decided that Google was not really my best option to diagnose myself and that I needed professional and proper help so I took the leap (and my credit card) and booked into a sports injury clinic. After a thorough examination and an hour later, it was determined that it wasn't a direct problem with my achilles and that it was in fact a problem with the nerve that runs from my achilles up to my neck, nothing to do with achilles tendonitis at all - thanks Google! Told not to run for two weeks and sent away with stretches the long road to recovery was just starting. After the break from running and doing the set exercises three times a day, the pain subsided and the strength came back so with a mind full of hope I went back to physio. After giving me a few prods (expertly obv) and was told the leg is alot better, my problem and solution now is my stretches. I don't know about you, but err, I don't stretch... well, correction, I kinda do and kinda don't, but until now did I realise just how important it is to release the muscles. Ordered to take one more week off running and a double sided page full of stretches to do daily with three sets of each. More stretches!?!? Coming from a place where stretches feature as heavy in my life as lettuce, I was not best pleased with this but it has taught me alot about how to take care of my body and that really, I get out what I ruddy well put in - simple huh!?

And so, tomorrow the week of 'rest' is up, yep, finito, over and yes, there is no longer the same pain as before, I'm still tender and I do get twinges but tomorrow I can go out and run. Gone are the standard 4-6 miles I would normally crank out, nope I am back to a run/walk programme for a while and yes, I'll see how it goes but I am just so pleased I went and got help, and if anyone is in the same situation, please do not turn to Google, spesh for a diagnosis that's for sure! So here goes it, tomorrow is like D-Day. I'm beyond scared, that very sick to the stomach kind of scared/nerves. Half of me is just worried I wont be able to run or cant.......I guess time will tell and it's a case of taking it slow!

Sometimes my motivation wanes, and yes throughout this 'injured' period I have most def wandered from my original 'get up and go' but now I'm (touch wood) on the road to recovery I have The Great North Run to look forward to. I've watched this Half Mara on TV for years and always wanted to do it, so this September, I am going to be running it! ARGHHHHH! and helping me along the way is a fellow Team Bangs on the Run 2 grad Sam. After finishing the London Marathon this girly is up and away for her next mission, the GNR, along with this rather formidable half mara, Sam has come up with #RunThisTown. This team is for all those of you that are:

  • Running crew for people who don't identify themselves as runners. 
  • A team running this year's Great North Run and supporting each other online. Oh and there will be tshirts people. How amaze right? Not only that, there will be a carb-filled party before and a after party for the finish!
If you are lucky to be in Newcastle then join the group - they'll be running every Tuesday night starting May 15th, meeting at 7pm from Hoults Yard on Walker Road, Newcastle Upon Tyne and for those of you like me who aren't near, GET ONLINE! Heading up this amazing crew is of course the gorgeous Sam make sure you follow her on Twitter @samcentric, and me @sarahs_scribble and organise a charity place for the Great North Run and tell all of us! Don't forget to tweet using #RunThisTown and GET RUNNING :)

Wanna know the team so far?

Go follow each and every one and go join our team!!!!! 

Friday, 4 May 2012

Putting it to bed...

In an ideal world that didn't judge us all for what we were wearing and it wasn't frowned upon, I can guarantee to you that I would be wearing my PJ's all day, every day, and yes, even to work. There is nothing god damn worse than waking up on a Monday morning, its dark, cold and rainy outside and you want to kick the alarm clock in the balls (had many of those right?) and if that's not bad enough, you must face the trauma that is the wardrobe. Picking something to wear when quite frankly, your brain is still asleep is not an  easy feat and well, to put it bluntly I just wish it was socially acceptable to wear my PJ's to work, alas, for some reason people look at you weird.

I spend pretty much most of my life in PJ's - I obviously wear them at night, in bed, but when I get home from work, what do I change into? PJ's. And on Weekends, what do I choose to lounge around in? PJ's!! Yeah, so basically, if I'm not wearing 'work' clothes, you will find me in PJ's.... I don't normally stick to one brand or type of style with nightwear, lets face it - anything goes, that's another joy. Straight up on my radar is The Pyjama Store - a whole god damn Pyjama heaven of a website that is all about, err, pyjama's.....

With nightwear for both us ladies and our fella's, the website is jam packed full of brands with some stunning style of pj's. To name but a few of the brands, we have Cyberjammies, MaybeBlu, Ruby and Ed and my personal fave, Princess Tam Tam. If like me and well sometimes you want to keep warm and cosy, and then strip off for something a little more, pssst, playful, then this website really is for you, and if I haven't made you want to go on over to the site just yet, they now stock BedHead of LA, yep, for those of you who don't recognise this brand, then you are in for a treat. Supplying some of TV's most well-known and loved shows like Mad Men and SATC these printed PJ's are iconic as they are stylish and fun  - Finally my chance to look like Carrie is here!! I have been staring at this website for a whole week now and made a wishlist as long as my arm, gone are my tendencies to throw on the fella's mouldy old t-shirts (Sorry Mark!) I want to look good in bed, and no, not just for a bit of ;) but for me, I will be a sleeping beauty...

Here's a snippet and how much have I completely fallen in love with the Dote range..... *sigh*

Princesse Tam Tam




So, with nightwear like this and thanks to The Pyjama Store, it should now be made legal for us to wear PJ's everywhere - whenever we like and especially to work!

Get yourself to The Pyjama Store HERE follow them via Twitter @thepyjamastore now!

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to bed!

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

When running is so much more...

When I used to hear people going on about the real meaning of running or what they felt when they run I used to snigger, laugh and silently mock - how can running ever make people feel so much more in their life I thought. That was until I started running myself.

Running has brought a whole new clarity to my life - I finally 'got it', I understood what all those people where going on about - when I was running there really was nothing else in the world that could stop me. Last weekend just gone, was the annual London Marathon. Something that I've always sat, year after year, in front of the TV, in complete and utter admiration of every single individual who would push their bodies to the limit like that and run 26.2 miles. Whether you're a runner or not, the true extremity of running 20+ miles is not something I can easily think about, yet here these people are, doing something amazing, some for the fun of it, some for a charity and some for their own personal reasons.

I was lucky enough to be part of a cheer team in aid of Beating Bowel Cancer - This charity is close to my heart for many reasons. An illness that is not often talked about, with people shying away from the subject, this charity takes away the stigma and is open and honest about spotting the signs of bowel cancer early.

Arriving early and meeting some of the other cheerleaders we all knew exactly what we were there for and that is bringing our runners home to the biggest and loudest course of cheers. It didn't stop there though - our cheers and words of encouragement were for every single one of the Marathon runners. For me, as a newbie into running and with only one half marathon under my belt, I recognised instantly that hearing a cheer, your name being called or a simple 'well done' can really help push you on. Being positioned at mile 24, and with the end very very near the looks of suffering, pain, endurance, sweat, tears and heart and soul was apparent, and with tears in my eyes, I filled my lungs with air and cheered/screamed/shouted words of encouragement for these wonderful people in front of me. The day was filled with a kind of built-up emotion, for me, and experiencing a race before, I was familiar with some of the feelings that might of been felt by the runners but also as a spectator I was so in awe of everything these people were doing.

Being on a cheer team was one of the best experiences, Yes, I know I wasn't the one out there, raising money and running my little legs off, but in my heart of hearts I'd like to think I was still making someones day by giving them a few words, maybe, just when they needed it the most. A high point came in the form of when my fellow Team Bangs on The Run team-mate Sam came running past. I'd had my beady eyes out for this amazing girl and there she was in all her Team Bangs T-shirted glory. I instantly cried - this girl had been training her heart out for this journey and here she was. I was beyond proud of her guts and determination - in her eyes, she hadn't had a good run, but to me, she was an absolute superstar. Embracing her in the biggest hug, I held onto her and cried. To me, she was a winner, and I hope she knows just how proud I am of her. With my cheering duties coming to an end, and with a bigger sense of awe for these people,  I knew that I wanted in on this. Not for my own glory, but to give something back - to do something for someone else. When you're running it is solely you and your own mind and thoughts, and mostly mine are of other people, things I want to change and ways I can help - I'm no saint, but I cant imagine a higher privilege of someday being able to run a marathon in aid of someone else.

I want to say thank you to all the Beating Bowel Cancer cheer squad - you guys rock and all done an amazing thing, and to all the runners who done an amazing thing. I am forever in your debt. And to my Team Bangs Sam, you are awesome - STANDARD.

Did I mention I have entered the 2013 ballot? Lets allow fate to decide......

*All photo's courtesy of Beating Bowel Cancer *

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