My last marathon and our beautiful Swedish ski-retreat

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April 13th, 2015

We are currently flying at a height of 29,5000 feet over Sweden on our way back from a wonderful family skiing adventure. Seven days of fun-filled escapism, including husky-sledding and toboganning on the snow-capped slopes of Bydalenfjallen with my husband and two children, Joshua and Jack. When we touch down at Heathrow Terminal 5, whatever the landing, it will be back to reality with a bump.

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So with the London Marathon looming in 2 weeks’ time, how did we end up going on a skiing holiday I hear you ask?! Well, we bought the skiing holiday at a pre-school event 2 years ago and booked it last year, and I was only offered  the London Marathon place at Christmas-time.

As it turns out, the timing was perfect. My legs (and my mind!) needed a break from training, and I needed to recharge my physical and psychological batteries. A couple of weeks ago, I went to my surgeon Dr Martin Logan after experiencing some pain in my left-knee. The news was gutting. Martin said that I now have “chondral damage to the medial facet of the patella” – in layman’s terms, the surface cartilage on my left knee-cap has split. Martin said: “this has to be your last marathon Sarah.”

There was a silence. Marathon fun-running has been a major part of my life and my identity for the last 12 years but I am definitely going to heed Martin’s advice and because of my injury, I will probably need to walk and jog around the course. But I want to savour the moments and for it to be a joyful celebration. My main objective this time is to raise money for the children at Gende Tesfa School. I made a commitment to the children and teachers there when I visited them in March, and I don’t want to break that promise. I want to help the school with its Breakfast Club and donate some money towards a new playground:

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Our Swedish holiday has provided me with some much  needed time to reflect and some beautiful family-time– I skied every day and did one magical one-hour run through the mountains. It was a feast for the senses – It took me through forests and next to frozen lakes. Locals told me afterwards that there had been sightings of a bear 3 kms away. Fortunately, I didn’t come face to face with one…..

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