It’s 15 March 2020, the day of the Bath Half Marathon. The U.K weather is at its finest – raining, tension is in the air and I am feeling the excitement as I stand nervously at the start line ready to embark on my longest run of my life for The Wave Project.
In 2018, I moved from Hertfordshire to Exeter where I was introduced to the surf therapy charity The Wave Project; a charity that helps young people who are struggling to grow confidence through surfing and most importantly to have fun. Just the thought of it brought a tear to my eye so there and then I signed myself up as a volunteer and haven’t looked back since. I am part of the South Devon group with sessions running in Bigbury, Goodrington and are new location in Sidmouth. Working one-to-one with a young person means you are able to build a trust and a bond with them, catching waves together or simply sitting on a surf board and chatting about life. I have created many memories and friendships from the project that when I saw a notification about signing up for the Bath Half Marathon I knew I wanted to do it and raise money for the awesome charity.
It’s Winter 2020, training is in full swing, I reach over my fundraising target of £200 and the U.K Winter storms begin. First is Storm Ciara, where I get blown about whilst trying to fit in a long Sunday run and a week later followed by Storm Dennis. My partner dragged me out of the house whilst everyone was cosy inside to run the 7 km I needed to do that day, drenched was an understatement but there is something quite enduring about it.
It’s race day, I check the forecast and it’s raining all day, ‘not to worry’ I thought seeing as I had just been training in the wettest February on record. I pin my number to my Wave Project top, receive my final good luck from my parents and boyfriend and wave goodbye as I follow the crowd to the start line, 3, 2, 1 and we are off. I smile all the way round that my face gets as sore as my legs knowing that this is an atmosphere I’ll never forget. 1 hour 59 minutes and 55 seconds later and we have crossed the finish line and the fundraising total I hear you ask… £645.65 towards The Wave Project!