I ran 15 miles for a mammogram - but why?
This year marks four years since I was first diagnosed with breast cancer. And since being so unbelievably fortunate to make it through I've had a mammogram every year to check all is well.
And indeed it was while sat in the chemotherapy ward being pumped full of drugs back in 2015 that I decided should I make it I'd do all I can to help you look and feel great no matter what and indeed raise money to help beat breast cancer for good.
That is what HighBorn is all about. We all deserve to feel 'HighBorn' whatever we're facing. Whether that's the Monday Blues, a horrid illness, an awkward teenage child, unnecessary road rage, rude shop assistant bringing you down or whatever!
But that still doesn't answer why I ran 15 miles to my mammogram (and indeed I ran back).
Before I was diagnosed with breast cancer I always tried to eat fairly well and keep reasonably fit. But I never really focused on it. Since beating the 'c' I've run the London Marathon twice to raise money for Breast Cancer, run two Ultra-marathons and countless other marathons too. Some think I've gone bonkers and am over-compensating. But, the truth is I enjoy it and as I do most of my running with Henry it's a lovely way for us to get out and about together and really do something we enjoy together. There's nothing quite like battling through a 46-mile ultra marathon over terrain covering thousands of feet of climb to bring you together!
But! PLEASE! Don't take this as a message you should do anything like this. Yes, we all know exercise is good for us but you decide in your own way how that manifests for you :-).
- Being fit reduces the chance of the 'c' returning! There's some pretty compelling evidence for this and in some reports, the reduction is as high as 30%. I'll take those odds!
- Time with Henry! Yes, the 'breather' holding the camera was Henry. He's lost over 4 stone since we started running together.
- Check out the scenery! We're unbelievably lucky to live here now and to be able to immerse ourselves in the outdoors like this is an amazing way to melt away stress!
- It's better for the planet! Why drive when we could run?!
The look on the nurse's face when I arrive for a post-cancer breast cancer dressed in my running gear and when I asked I say "I ran 15 miles to get here", is priceless. And MORE IMPORTANTLY, I KNOW that my story will be passed on to others at the start of their cancer journey and it helps give them hope and resolve to push through!
- And finally ... why not! :-)
So what's the message here?
Running makes me feel alive. It helps reduce stress, keep me healthy and it allows me a little wiggle room for that slice of banoffee, bowl of jam roly-poly or the odd glass of wine!
And, it reminds me how lucky I am. I feel like the luckiest lady alive and I want to make every single day count.
How about you ... what makes you feel alive?
PS: At the time of writing I don't have the results from the mammogram so got all my 'fingies' and toes crossed :-).