The lure of bling got me started, now i’m going to run a half marathon!

Emily Hitchens tells us her running story in her own inspiring words.

I stumbled across Virtual Runner by accident one cold March evening back in 2017. I wasn’t in any way, shape or form a runner but gosh I loved the look of the medals. I spotted a Easter bunny medal and just had to have it, so signed up and headed down to my local beach to do my 5k along the sea front. It wasn’t fast, it certainly wasn’t pretty but I did it. My first 5k in years and It took my just over 59 minutes. The feeling I got on completing that distance was so great I signed up for another and another.

6 months later after building up my confidence I joined my local running club the Quantock Harriers. With their support and the Virtual Runner community I was growing in ability and exactly one year after finding Virtual Runner I was awarded “club member of the year” trophy at my club.

At the start of 2018 I signed up to the 500k challenge medal. It was a massive distance for me to think I could do but I’ve already completed so much I never thought possible so why not this too. I completed the distance 6 weeks earlier than planned and when it arrived it was like winning the lottery. Now nearly 2 years after finding Virtual Runner I’m running over 10 miles a week and I’ve signed up to the Yeovil half marathon which is taking place on March 31st which happens to land on Mother’s Day (not how ever imagined spending my Mother’s Day).

My life has completely changed since finding Virtual Runner and to anyone who thinks they can’t, I promise you you can. It’s not about time it takes or whether you walk it all, run it all or run/walk. It’s about you doing it for you, about challenging yourself and in time you will find you will improve. My 5k started at just over 59 minutes and is now 39:59 (every second counts).