The Stories Behind our 12k Challenge- Sam

My name is Sam, Mummy to Joseph, Olivia and Noah. Joseph was stillborn after 3 consecutive miscarriages, We thought after passing the 12 week mark in our 4th pregnancy that we would hopefully be taking our baby home this time but it wasn't meant to be. I started hemorrhaging at 24 weeks due to a placental abruption and Joseph couldn't be saved.  We've since gone on to have our 2 rainbow babies Olivia and Noah who are now 6 and 3.  I've found parenting after loss extremely difficult, our journey to parenthood has changed me forever but watching Olivia and Noah grow up will be something I'll never take for granted, they bring us so much joy and I'm forever grateful to have the opportunity to be their mum.

Why did you decide you would like to take part in our 12K for 12 Month's Challenge?  Ever since Noah was around 5 months old I decided to try some exercise to help me physically but most importantly mentally.  I joined my local bootcamp E.L. Fitness and it completely transformed my mental and physical health.  I've grown so much in the last 3 years and earlier this year I fully qualified as a personal trainer and fitness coach.  I work alongside Emily but also have my own clients.  3 years ago i couldn't run for the bus but I've since ran a half marathon and a 16 mile race in Kingston.  Exercise clears my head, lifts my mood and sets me up for the day.  I've met lifelong friends through our bootcamp community and I'm on a personal mission to help others in the same way.  I've decided to do the 12k challenge with a couple of friends who also have experienced baby loss, we're doing it together and will be supporting each other all the way. What are your plans for the day? So far there's 3 of us doing it together, probably around Windsor great park.  We will walk and run, it's not about time it's all about taking part and having a chat, clearing our heads and maybe even having some cake after! I'm a great believer in keeping exercise fun and enjoyable and we'll go at a pace that suits us all. How will you keep motivated during the challenge? Are there any parts you are nervous about?  Are there any tips you can share to help others who may be apprehensive about taking part?  I'm not nervous, I'm excited.  I think doing it with other people really helps, often on your own you might stop early, doing it with others means added support, you can keep each other going.  My top tips would be 1) wear good shoes that aren't going to rub and hurt. 2) try to take the pressure off, it's good to set goals but not to the point where it takes the enjoyment out of it. What will you do to celebrate making it to the end of your 12k adventure?  I think tea and cake is essential!  The "theme" for our first Birthday and our 12K Adventure is to celebrate not only our fantastic community but also our own achievements over the past year, (which is often something that gets forgotten when we are in the midst of infertility, loss and grief). What would you like to celebrate during the challenge?  I would like to celebrate the amazing friendships I've made even through the heartache of babyloss.  Also the fact that I've grown so much and i'm now ready to start my next adventure of being a personal trainer and coach.  It's something I never imagined I'd have the confidence to do after losing my babies.  It feels like your whole world has ended and you will never rebuild and recover but there is always hope and life after loss. What does the Rainbow Running & Yoga Club Mean to You? 

It's a club that nobody wants to join, but it's also the most supportive and caring group of people.  Lucy you are just incredible with all that you've achieved before lockdown but also during lockdown.  The midweek mindfulness sessions have been the most amazing calm in the chaos of the pandemic.  The rainbow running and yoga club has taught me that even through the worst heartache and grief, we can survive and support each other through our own individual journeys and that can mean so much.

Sam @sl.fitness2020 and @e.l.fitness01

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