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Jennifer McBride – and her BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

jen m1

Jennifer McBride

Hi my name is Jennifer McBride and I am recently new to the world of running. I am a mum to a 7 year old boy and a full time step mum to two boys aged 11 and 13. I work part-time, study and am currently doing the catch fitness 20 week challenge. I understand what it is like to juggle a busy lifestyle but believe I am beginning to get the work/life/running balance sorted!

I initially started running in my late twenties (I am now 43…) because I had a boyfriend who was into it. Until this point I detested running and I literally used to throw up before any school running event as it was so far out of my comfort zone and what I thought my body could do. The boyfriend didn’t last long and the interest in running, even less. In 2006 some friends decided to bike the Motatapu and asked me if I would like to join. I found it easier to run up the hills, rather than cycle so decided to run it.  I ran the Queenstown half marathon not long after this and then that was pretty much it for the next five years! I have always been a bit of a one hit wonder – train for something, do the event usually with minimal preparation and then think ‘job done’, and not do anything else for a few years.

At the beginning of 2013 my lovely mum was diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer. I travelled to Timaru at the weekends to care for her and found that a consistent exercise regime was hard to maintain. After she passed away in June last year I decided it was time to do something for myself.

The way I figured it I had two options – sit at home, eat potato chips and feel sorry for myself or find a positive focus. I saw an event posted by the inspiring Valerie Henderson (Running Skirts NZ) which was to go from running 0-50km in 5 months. The idea that, after following a training programme designed by Richard at TeamCP, one would be able to finish the Bedrock50 ultramarathon. Very appealing I thought and a good goal to focus on. Family and friends were a bit like “really?” as I had literally not run for years. In my head it was totally achievable providing that my body held together. Unfortunately I ended up with a few niggly injuries which culminated in a torn calf muscle two weeks before the event. However, I rested, grieved for what could have been and decided I would become smarter with my training and nutrition, get stronger and aim to do it again in 2016.

So here I am eight months out from my BHAG (big hairy audacious goal). This blog will be snippets about my training and my journey towards the Bedrock50 2016 and beyond. Why write a blog? Well for me it’s about accountability and getting out there and doing what I have planned to do. I also hope that others on a similar journey will find some of my experiences (both the bits that work and the bits that didn’t!) useful on the way to achieving their personal goals.