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I just took Rose to school for the final time…which sounds so dramatic.

But it kind of is.

This afternoon we are going to get a kitten…trivial perhaps, but she has wanted one forever and I think if she is going to be stuck at home at least she should have a little friend to play with.

We must find ways of thriving during these times instead of just surviving, which I know if you are on the front line in the NHS, battling the virus or at the point of breakdown…that probably sounds trite.

But here’s what I believe to be true.

When the shit hits the fan…at any point in our lives, we can roll over or we can fight. I almost rolled over last week, I found myself not wanting to write, not wanting to go live into my coaching groups….not even wanting to shower or eat.

I felt real panic…like…what about me? Who’s going to look after me? For context I am a single mum, with no immediate family nearby, no partner, no dad…no one to come save me.

But isn’t that how many of us are feeling?

The panic buying, the panic socialising. Last weekend when the advice hadn’t really been to stay at home, I attended an event where I was speaking alongside Kriss Akabussi no less, and afterwards 8 of us speakers went for dinner. We didn’t all know each other but we just wanted to gather. It is important that we gather…even now, especially now that we can’t do it in person.

On Tuesday I made an announcement into my FREE TFTR Facebook Community…I was shaking with fear and struggled to hold back my emotions.

When I came off the call I sobbed.

I’m not even sure who I was crying for, but that is what grief looks like right? We are mourning the loss of our freedom, our normality, our control.

Next week I have my good friend Dipt Solanki, who is a grief coach coming into our group to do a free workshop to help us understand how we are feeling (so do make sure you head over to our group before Monday)

And this is what I am proposing for the foreseeable future.

A programme of bespoke fitness, nutrition. wellbeing and mindset classes when we need them most, zoomed or FB lived direct into the group, so we can take part from the safety of our own home.

I am thinking chair based exercise, HITT, kettlebells, laughter yoga, EFT, sound healing….anything that helps us stay well and sane.

I am calling it Thrive Inside…and my intention is to help some of the fitness professionals who were on zero hour contacts of freelancers, to earn a bit of a wage.

But for this we need supporters.

Micropayments.

A suggested donation of £5 per month…administered via www.ko-fi.com/toofattorun

We have already raised £450 which is fabulous. So I will meet virtually of course on Monday with a small team of freelancers who are going to help me drive this forward.

We will start officially on the 1st April…with an online summit.

Who wants in?

We must not be broken by this, we must emerge stronger as the human race. We must learn the lessons, and find strength like never before.

And so 5 practical ways you can thrive inside

  1. Stay connected to your communities….find ways of coming together, use www.Zoom.com I have coordinated a family mothers day conference for me and my siblings and all of our kids
  2. Have a plan…try not to just wing it. I have a free monthly planner you can download…you can populate this with your runs or walks, and then our sessions come the 1st April
  3. Have some quiet time….meditation can really help you to take stock, to breathe, to allow some healing in your body. I like Insight timer which is an app.
  4. Hug the ones you still can…you can self hug too. Find comfort. Wear your softest PJs, wash your hair, light the candles.
  5. Switch off the news…24 hour news broadcasts are exhausting. By all means keep informed but try and limit the noise. On social media the more we click on things the more of the same you will get. So share the fun uplifting stuff

I hope that is helpful

Stay safe, stay strong, stay sane

Check out this link to find out more about out Thrive Inside initiative which starts on the 1st April.

Oh and tea….I forgot to mention tea. Everything always feels better after a brew!!!

Julie Creffield is an award-winning blogger, motivational speaker and transformational coach. She set up The Fat Girls Guide to Running after coming dead last in a race in 2010, she has spent the last decade commenting on and campaigning for equality in sport.

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