• Tom Crossland

A week of highs and lows

Another week closer to the deadline and things are getting real. I am still training hard, putting together quite a few training days, and spreading the word for the up and coming Run to Refuge 2020.

I really enjoyed running alongside the Maverick Dark Series last Saturday. It was a nice change of pace to be running with others, as I am used to doing it solo. I managed to take in some beautiful scenery along the trail but enjoyed the comradery of running alongside these awesome people.

Last Tuesday, I was highly privileged to meet with a Womens’ Institute and talk about some really important topics relating to Run to Refuge. Such as modern slavery and how we can end it. Most importantly, how people can become conscientious consumers, ensuring that the products they buy are exploitation free and recognising (and by extension reporting) the signs of modern slavery in the UK.

Not to say everything has been all positive this week. The amount of work that is required alongside the running is monumental and the strain of these things are just coming to fruition. I have to admit I have struggled with the mental strain when it comes to the personal collateral which comes with such a huge project.

Things that may seem little but have been nagging at me, such as, making sure my partner in the UK is going to cope with additional responsibilities like walking the dog every day while managing their long hours, little things like that.

The weight of this project has definitely been bearing down on me this week, as I am coming to realise how much is left to do and how little time we have to do it in. There are quite a few volunteers already geared up to support me through the run from 9th to the 19th May, and from the 6th June right up until the end, so apart from filling that gap, I am fully supported with an amazing crew and looking forward to getting to the start line.

I know I am not being my usual positive self in this blog, but I feel it is important to give you guys a realistic report on all the aspects of the run-up to this project. It is important to allow a little self-doubt, to know that you do not have to be super confident the entire time. Also, just as importantly you must have self-compassion. For example, I have recently missed a few training sessions and after a long chat on the phone with my coach we have come to realise that over the past five years we have built up my base fitness and nothing I do in the next three months will magically give me more huge amounts more fitness. So I need to keep that realisation in my mind when I experience these low points and not allow the small worries to defeat me.

From a fundraising point-of-view, we are doing quite well and once I have added the greatly received donations from the Womens’ Institute, we have collectively raised just over £1500. Even though this is a great start I feel that to make the desired impact for the charity, in helping them overcome some of the issues that they face, to make the three months of running worth it, so to speak we will have to raise more funds and really get the word out about how we can all help those affected by Run to Refuge.

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