Vicar turns Warrior

It’s December 2018 ~ I’ve been 60 since March and made great progress with my strength and fitness. I am a regular at my local gym: I Spin four or five times each week, I lift weights, I’ve taken part in the odd Circuit Training session and I have a Personal Trainer who puts me through my paces each week. I am more active than I’ve ever been in my entire life!

It’s December 2018 ~ in fact it’s Christmas Day 2018 ~ and my lovely son is living across the world, in New Zealand. However, he has such a surprise in store for his old mum!

My daughter Jo, hands me an envelope, as a Christmas present from her brother, with a grin on her face. As she does so, her dad also passes an envelope to her.

I cannot even begin to describe the shock on discovering the contents of that envelope, or, for that matter, the shock on my daughter’s face as she receives an identical one.

Peter has entered us both to take part in Total Warrior, an Extreme Obstacle Course Race!

I have never in my entire life contemplated doing anything like it and I have to be honest, my first reaction is absolute fear and panic. I certainly don’t feel anything like a ‘Total Warrior’!

Later in the day I Google the race and my fear increases tenfold.

I can’t do this!

On my first visit to the gym after Christmas, I share the news with my PT (Personal Trainer) about my Christmas present. He tells me I will love it. I don’t believe him. He tells me that he will do it with me and that we will get a team together. I feel better. I need the support.

I set about a training programme – the Race is in June and by the time the day comes, Jo and I are joined by 9 others, friends, family, members of my congregation. The fronts of our T Shirts, fabulously donated by the Ink Box from Marple, states we are the ‘Mud Buds’, whilst the back cheekily identifies us as the Fuddy Muckers.

My son, Peter and his partner, Jayne, also join us, having arrived home from New Zealand a few days before.

After being in various states of excitement to total fear as we begin the race, we all have the most amazing day. We have a fantastic support group with us who cheer us on from the sides and look after us when we finish.

Unfortunately, I am carrying a nasty shoulder injury, sustained in training, which means I can’t pull myself up over some of the obstacles, but my team mates are there to support me as I jump through fire, wade through mud up to my waist, jump off a platform into the deepest, coldest water and crawl through tyres and muddy tunnels.

As we cross the finish line there is only one reaction: let’s book it again for next year!

In the meantime I proudly wear a T Shirt which declares: Total Warrior!


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