Mark started off his running journey locally and wanted to push himself further. He has since set himself a 6-week training program and complete a marathon.
Mark's running journey
When we went into lockdown last year, it was very strange adapting to working from home! I decided to push myself to go for a run either before work or after work to try and get out of the house.
After a few weeks of running 5k regularly twice a week I decided to pick a point and run to it. I live in Penistone and from Penistone you can see the large windmills that sit above Millhouse Green, I decided to run to them and back. This was a significant incline and something I had never done before. At the Windmills there is a viewing point that has 360-degree views of amazing countryside. I couldn’t believe that I had lived in Penistone all my life and never been to this point and really taken a step back and looked at the amazing countryside that surrounds it. I decided at that point I wanted to run all around this amazing countryside that I had taken for granted. I decided to plan a half marathon around the boundary of Penistone. I put together a 6-week training programme, I had never run a half marathon before, the furthest I had run was a 10k. After completing the half marathon, I had really got the running bug and working towards a target/goal was having such a positive impact on my life during a period of uncertainty. I decided to set a goal of running a marathon to raise money for charity. The marathon around Penistone would also include the big inclines that I had grown to really enjoy running up and down. I set a 9-week training programme to work towards a goal of running the marathon, building up to 60 miles per week. I completed my personal marathon on 27th July 2020 in 3 hours and 56 minutes, the ending of the marathon was at Penistone Church FC, where my friends and family were there to cheer me over the finish line.
After recovering from the marathon, I have since stuck to a weekly routine of a 10k on a Wednesday morning before work and a 10-13 mile run on a Sunday morning. I really look forward to each run and enjoy listening to music and taking in the scenery. Running has improved my personal fitness, my body image and my mental health.
Running helps me to have bit of me time. I enjoy working to weekly targets and really feel the benefit of it. When things at work get a little stressful, I have a high amount of work on or I need a bit of thinking space, running really helps.
Improved mental health, the time to think over things or even think of nothing at all is something I really enjoy. I also enjoy a really challenging run, particularly trail running, I like exploring new routes off road that I haven’t been on before and get a real sense of achievement when I complete a big climb.
Give it a go, set yourself a time each week that you will commit to, that way it makes it harder for you to cancel. I enjoy spacing them out on specific days and look forward to when it will be. I look at running as a free membership. It costs very little (correct shoes are important) and you can do it anywhere. Get out and see what is right on your doorstep!
Mark said: Get out and see what is right on your doorstep!