1 million steps to London

I’m out of the saddle in these next blog posts and chronicling my journey to the London Marathon. All going well, I’ll be lining up with 40,000 other crazies on 28 April 2019, poised for the run of my life.

Nervousness and excitement simmer in equal measure as I envisage that moment. While I have run the distance before, it was on the flatter-than-flat streets of Rotterdam, where speed bumps felt like mountains, and my fitness was on a whole other level.

And while London is no Everest, it will certainly be more challenging, and unquestionably more emotional than Rotterdam. A marathon on home soil. 26 miles to shed the tears of a tough year. A journey from loss to light. A spark of hope, and new beginnings.

Below is a short video I filmed for the charity I’m running for, explaining my motivation.

As I write this, 82 days lie between me and the starting line on Blackheath. The furthest I’ve run this year is 17 km (just over 10 miles). That was last weekend, and a struggle. The emotional toll of countless trips between the Netherlands and the UK last year as my Dad bravely battled an aggressive form of cancer, is still making itself known. The ever-present anxiety, the desperate search for a miracle cure, and finally, the inevitable goodbye: I need to transform those deep caverns of pain into fierce mountains of power. Melt the shackles of grief and sadness into rivers of inspiration and hope. In short, I need to shed my 2018 skin and make peace with my lot.

This marathon journey is also a reminder that my struggles pale in comparison to millions of others around the world. As I sit in my comfortable home at 35 years old and feel the deep loss of both parents, I can’t even begin to imagine what a street child in Rwanda feels like, unsure of when the next meal or hug will come; or a girl in Ghana facing a life of prostitution. That’s why, in running the race of my own life, I’m also raising money for Chance for Childhood. A small UK charity, with a big heart, dedicated to changing the lives of those living in desperate poverty and unimaginable hardship.

Over the next three months I’m going to share the trials and tribulations, the emotions, the milestones, the inspirations and the songs that I discover on this journey to London. If at any point you feel compelled to donate to the cause I’m dedicating this all to, you can do so here: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/sarah-fencott

Today’s motivational song: Running Man by Ollie Gabriel. It just gets me itching to break out those running shoes!


Please consider sponsoring me for the London Marathon. I’m running for Chance for Childhood, a charity that protects children from the devastating consequences of extreme poverty, conflict and disability.

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