Rosie Runs: How Our Summer Volunteer Ran a Half Marathon!

By Rosie Hurley

Rosie & her cousin on a 17km run!

Rosie & her cousin on a 17km run! Photo: Instagram

If you’d have told me this time last year that in a few weeks’ time I’d be running a half marathon, there’s no way I would’ve believed you. Added to that, that I’ll have raised over £350 for the Carers’ Centre, and I definitely would’ve spent days wandering around in a haze of disbelief. This time last year I hadn’t been running in over two years, never really having picked it up properly, and I certainly wasn’t exercising regularly. That’s why it would’ve been an alien idea to me a year ago to run the Bath Half Marathon this March — I simply wouldn’t have thought myself capable of it.

Here I am now though, with just over two weeks to go, and I’m excited and completely terrified in equal measure. Last summer saw me with a stretch of three months ahead of me — I was back home from uni and wanted to make the most of my time before heading back for my final year. I knew that I wanted to get some sort of volunteering or work experience under my belt, so my Mum, who volunteers at the Carers’ Centre as a telephone befriender, put me in touch with Emma to see if I could help her with some of the Marketing side of things. For about two months — July to August — I was able to help out in the office doing lots of different tasks and it was a great experience. I was made to feel very welcome and tried my hand at a variety of things: from writing blog posts, to updating the records, to attending carers’ breaks. It was wonderful to volunteer somewhere in which there was a great sense of achievement that the work being done was making a difference to the local community.

Around this time too, last summer, I decided to hop on the exercise bandwagon and try to start running. I used the Couch to 5k app, and to be honest, I had no expectations that I’d last very long — I’d fully resigned myself to being back to square one within a couple of weeks. However, through a combination of motivation (sourced from who knows where) and craziness, I managed to stick with it, and now, somehow, I find myself here, two weeks out from the Bath Half. As you can imagine it was a bit of a spur of the moment decision to enter the race, made when I was in an optimistic mood after a run, but I always knew, from my volunteering at the Carers’ Centre, that I wanted to keep on being involved with the charity in whatever way I could. Joining their running team was a no-brainer, and throughout my training, from the end of last year to now, it’s been a privilege being able to represent them through my fundraising.

Barring a slight groin injury a few weeks ago (which luckily now seems to be back to normal), my training has gone pretty smoothly. Although I’m as nervous as anything about the big day, I’m also very excited. I’ve heard that the atmosphere and crowd support is incredible, and it’ll be great to meet the other runners on the Carers’ Centre team. If you see any of us on the day — with our matching t-shirts on — be sure to give us a big cheer and a jelly bean or two, I’m sure by mile 10 we’ll be needing all the support we can get!

I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who has donated so far, you’ve been incredibly generous and the Carers’ Centre and I truly appreciate it!

There’s still time to sponsor Rosie at Just Giving.

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