I’m feeling that tension. The way you feel when someone says that one thing that you know isn’t true, but it seems to be common belief:
‘Nothing much happens in August. Most people are on holiday or taking time off.’
A common misbelief in my world. Admittedly August is quieter in terms of the normal routine, but that shouldn’t mean it should be a month of slacking off.
I like to use this idea as a way to get ahead, to take advantage of this time whilst others are holidaying. It’s my birthday month, so that could be a reason why I always feel the need to be active – mentally or physically – to increase momentum as time ticks over from one year to the next. And moving into my next year I can remind myself of the big challenge that is creeping closer – working on a Cricket Without Boundaries project in Uganda
This year, August was was good for action – not too hot and not too cold. There’s been some rain, but not as much as I usually note and I feel as if I’ve finally got into the swing of regularly reaching my target number of miles. Although it’s not been quite how I expected – no super long cycle rides, but a regular input of commuting, making the effort to walk or run into town and turning the legs over in one way or another every day.
As a result I’ve done more miles this month than any other, however it’s not been as easy as hindsight would suggest. It’s been a big see-saw of “yes, I can do this” to “no this is a ridiculous challenge why am I bothering” with a smattering of “I can’t do too much, I need to manage my marathon training”. And at the end of the month my greater project has got me through. I’m closer to being on track, with a third of the year still to go. The donations have been slowly but steadily coming through and I’m grateful for each of them.
With a month to go until arrival in Uganda, I’m finding out more about the country, the social norms that people live with and are disadvantaged by and the state of the health of the population. 1.5million Ugandans live with HIV, with women, girls and young people being at greater risk of infection. There’s a lack of awareness about the condition – transmission and prevention – and this increases the stigma associated with it. Infected individuals often suffer from social exclusion, poor treatment at school and difficulty in receiving medical treatment. By using cricket to empower young people to understand more about HIV and to support positive behaviours, Cricket without Boundaries, goes some way to creating a change in both individuals and communities. The project provides information and understanding of the facts of HIV where children can learn together in a way that doesn’t discriminate by gender or condition, or even by skill level in a sport that is accessible to all.
It may seem like a crazy combination, but it works – over 250,000 children can verify that – and my contribution seems small against the problem, but it’s important nonetheless and every time I may think about slacking off my miles I know that with your help I can make a difference.
I’ve set myself the challenge of running, walking and cycling 3000 miles this year to raise funds for Cricket without Boundaries. If you are able to support and encourage me for this by making a donation, it’s easiest to do so online here.
Total mileage: 1685
Total run: 767 miles
Total cycle: 421 miles
Total walk: 497 miles
August totals: 347miles (132 run /136 cycle /79 walk)
In my virtual journey, I’m towards the bottom of Libya
Still to come – New Forest Marathon; as much running as I can in Uganda