Welcome to the story of true heroism, stupidity and tragic-ness. It’s a bit like Romeo and Juliet but less soppy and more sweaty.

It’s the tale of a girl, who once was so hungover that in a moment of pure desperation, signed up to do the 10K Race For Life in Reading on the 15th of July.

She was sat, on the end of a sofa debating life and why she was so tragic when a moment of pure elation came to her as she decided to change her life forever. She was going to run a 10K.

One thing led to another, and before she’d realised the commitment she’d made, friends, family and foes had all decided to donate to her cause. At first, she took it very seriously. She lost weight, made friends and even, dare I say it, enjoyed running? She ate well, trained seriously and was up to the grand total of 7km. It was looking good.

However, the month of June hit and after a relaxing holiday in the South of Italy, she returned, full of nutella, pizza and prosecco, feeling a little… delicate. As time passed, the fitness faded and the fat fluctuated around her thighs, waist and bum. She sat knowing the battle was coming, but life, stress and the dark demon of depression decided to rear its ugly head.

The temperature rose, the country was hit with football fever and the transfer of one job to the next took all of the girls energy. She pitifully attempted a run a week before the race but found heat and hayfever got the way. She managed a few times round a lake and realised the enormity of the challenge that was ahead.

The eve of that day has now come and the lack of training, food and motivation are hitting hard.

I am running a 10k as part of the Reading Race For Life in memory of my Grandma & Grandad Gillett, Grandad Dux and uncle Chris who lost a battle with something they couldn’t control – cancer. My Grandma sadly died of dementia, but she lived her life bringing up 5 children after my Grandad died of cancer before I was born.

I am thoroughly unprepared, but I’m doing it regardless because Race For Life matters to me and matters to a lot of people I care about. Think of me tomorrow and my tragic tale as I hopefully cross the finish line in Reading. Most of all however, think of those around you who we’ve lost, are losing or hope to never lose.

Cherish everything you’ve got and remember those we’ve lost for the people they were before they had cancer, rather than what became of them after.

Love and miss you always,

Lauren x

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