The London Marathon 2016 begins at home

Here is a list of things I hate:

  • Shorts
  • Massive crowds
  • Asking for money
  • Physical pain
  • Blisters
  • Bleeding nipples
  • Peeing in the street

But, more than I dislike any of the above, I hate the idea of living an ordinary life. Which is why, just before I turn 50, I intend to run the Virgin London Marathon in April this year.

It’s my version of a mid-life crisis.

The thing is, a number of seismic changes must occur in order for this to happen. I’m talking metamorphosis on a grand scale: grub to Lacewing, tadpole to Kermit, acorn to mighty Oak. I have to go from non-runner to marathon-ready athlete, hysterical quitter to stoic finisher, a chaos of desires to the vigorous structure of a training program. And all in 100 days.


On top the monumental personality and physical transformation I must undergo, my nearest and dearest are, frankly, not pulling rank in the encouragement stakes. On hearing of my successful ballot entry, the teenager momentarily looked up from pulling faces on Snapchat  to declare, “Mum, you’ll probably die.”

The 10-year-old worries that all her meals between now and April will be substituted for shakes containing kale and bulking agents. (She has a point). Meanwhile, the husband leads the kids in endless debates on whether I should dress up as a chicken or an ant.

The endurance test has already begun…