18 miles of hurt

Today I feel 80. I woke up at 5am desperate for the loo. I couldn’t walk and had to resort to crawling to the bathroom. Not fun.

Yesterday, 14 adults, 3 kids and Max the dog took on the challenge to walk 18 miles from Tardibigge to Diglis Basin in Worcester to raise money for the Brain Tumour Charity. Each year our workplace, Quattro Pensions, supports a chosen charity, raising money throughout the year. Our bosses are amazing and actively encourage us to support our chosen charity. For each day of charitable activity we commit to they give us half a day of holiday back. This year we support The Brain Tumour Charity. Many of us have friends or family who have suffered at the hands of this killer and felt strongly that we should fight this fight.

The day started out on a high note. The sun was peeking from behind the clouds, it was mild and dry. Actually a perfect walking day. Everyone was in good spirits and eager to crack on.

The “before” pic

I did have a “slight” concern though. I had been suffering with a bladder infection all week and although medication was kicking in I was worried about the numerous toilet stops I’d probably need. But I was sure there would be plenty of wee stops.

There weren’t.

So this was my 18 mile bugbear. Constantly needing the loo and almost never being in sight of facilities – it messes with your mind! I had to adapt to my new toilet-less surroundings though and the bushes became my friends. Too much information?

We stopped for lunch still in good spirits. I think we probably felt we could really do this and maybe it wouldn’t be so bad after all. So we chilled for a couple of hours eating and drinking and making good use of the pub loos!

But there was still a long way to go and some of us started to struggle after the lunch stop. The kids had made a sterling effort – aged 6 (I know! Just 6! Amazing!), 10 and 11 but they were flagging. They now needed more than just the excitement of Max the dog to carry them through. In fact the 6 year old needed Daddy to carry her. Just what he wanted to do 14 miles in!

And there were other issues too – hip problems, monster blisters and dodgy knees to name but a few. Boredom had also set in. 18 miles is a long way and no amount of Polkemon hunting is going to fill that void for 8 hours. Max the dog was also tiring. He was a fabulous distraction for the kids and almost tripped a couple of us into the canal with his odd habit of coming to an immediate and unexpected stop dead in his tracks every few feet. But even he decided enough was enough around 10 miles in, and tried to bail out by boarding a narrow boat  – much to the amusement of the family onboard. To be honest I’m sure we all wanted to join him!

Max plotting an escape
With the end in sight we’d fractured off into smaller groups, heads down, just wanting the whole thing over. I was now walking towards the back of the group but was in touch with those at the front who were about 10/15 minutes ahead. They sent me this pic which definitely spurred me on. So close. Nearly there.

The prize

Everyone made it – the kids, the injured and the totally broken all got to the end. Painkillers were shared around, little Lucy was sick, plasters added and alcohol drunk. I’ve never been so happy to get to the end of a walk. I’ve never walked that far before. And may not do it  again.

The “after” pic

I thought it was a joke when I was told there was now a couple of miles walk to the carpark. It was no joke. We really did have to walk again – well hobble! This was probably the hardest, longest couple of miles of the whole day!!! 😬😬😬😬

We have had so much support for this event and many people have been incredibly generous – we have now broken our £1,000 target. But if you haven’t sponsored us and would like to you can find our Just Giving page here. Thanks also to the other half of Quattro for manning the office for the day!

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