As Christmas and New Year become a distant memory, how many of you are keeping up with your resolutions for 2016? Have they already been pushed aside in favour of an obsession with the latest reality TV show or a craving for chocolate, or have you remained true to your promise to yourself? Each year the vast majority of New Year’s resolutions are about losing weight or getting fitter, but each year the majority of us don’t even make it out of January before we’re back to our bad old ways again.
Not for our Jim. He’s not a statistic; when he puts his mind to something he sticks to it, well, if he didn’t then his wife Louise would certainly steer him back on course! Jim’s been training for this year’s London Marathon, which he reminded me today is less than 100 days away – gulp! And with the new year has come new vigour, new vim, and new challenges. But I’m not going to waffle on about it, as he’s the best person to tell us about what’s been going on in our monthly interview with Jim Hicks, Marathon newbie in training.
“OK, so I slipped. I said I would. I predicted that the lure of the Christmas dinner table would get the better of me, and it did – I’m only human after all. But I also promised that I would start the year anew and put in the extra effort to work off any additional poundage that I may, or may not, have put on in that time. I’m true to my word, so as the New Year holiday rolled around I was already pounding the miles away. The longest of my training runs being 15 miles – accompanied by a couple of the chaps from my running group who were mad enough to get up early to join me at 8am on a near freezing morning run in the rain (or was it sleet?), but we all made it through.
Unfortunately, I found out once again the hard way that you can take these things too far. I signed up to a four-week intensive training programme at my local gym – three mornings a week of intensive training (alongside my running club activities) – but two weeks in, while doing the dreaded ‘burpees’ (it’s a much hated circuit training exercise) I managed get a groin injury. So that was me out of action for a couple of weeks. Not completely, because I’ve managed to keep going to the gym and modify my training to compensate, but no running. It seems to be working as I’ve lost a further 6½ inches combined off my chest, gut and sitting-down side. It may have helped that post-Christmas I am back on my diet – no bread, no pasta, basically if it’s got flavour it’s not allowed. However, on Monday I’m going to be starting up again, carefully at first, and join in on a ten-week award-winning circuit training programme that Pioneer Fitness are running for us in Moorside Park, using the Caloo fitness equipment of course, so I can once again get back on track.
We’re kicking things up a gear as well, because I discovered that the National Trust organises free-to-enter 10k runs on their estates every month so, with some friends from the running club, I’m planning to do them on a regular basis to help with the training.
Finally, on Valentine’s Day, the Love Moorside online campaign is having an event to help raise some more money for the London Marathon run – it’s an auction, but not just any old auction, Louise has been busy phoning around and we’ve got a treasure trove of goodies for you to bid on, including signed bits and pieces from the Strictly Come Dancing dancers and signed Commonwealth Games Team Scotland kit from Olympian superstar Dan Purvis. There’ll be lots more as well, so make sure you log in on the day.
With 100 days to go, it’s beginning to feel very real, but I’m confident that despite toe injuries, groin injury, and false starts, I WILL be ready for the Marathon.”