By Tula.

I have a diagnosis of personality disorder, and have found running so very beneficial to my mental health. I have been running 5k distances most days. Then l got the opportunity to run the virtual London Marathon, and I took it! I had 30 days to build up to it. 

On the day l was so excited and nervous. I set off in good spirits, running slowly for the first 12 miles. Then the pain set in! Every time l tried to run, the pain was too much. So, determined to finish (only another 14 miles!), l proceeded to walk. The pain got worse. I was walking with a huge lean. If l turned my head l fell over! I had to keep concentrating on keeping my body upright and focusing in front of me. But l refused to give in! 

As each mile passed l felt more encouraged. I had to complete it! I struggled on until on the marathon app l heard the words, “26.2 miles. You have completed the virtual London marathon.” Elated wasn’t enough to describe my feelings at that moment! Unbelievable! 

At the finish line!

I have had many challenges with my mental health. Some l have conquered, some l have had to try again, but l am not giving up now. If l can find the strength, fortitude, perseverance and endurance to run this race, l can continue the battle with my mental health.

A bonus, that also kept me going was the people who would be helped by the money l raised for Caring for Life. Many of the people they support have mental health difficulties, and l am pleased that my little effort might benefit them in some way.