My fitness review of 2022

I write a review of my fitness and wellbeing shenanigans each year as a bit of a round up.

To look at lessons learned, to celebrate my successes, and to highlight some of the awesome things which have happened under the umbrella of the Too Fat to Run movement.

And what a whopper of a year 2022 has been, so grab a cuppa, and buckle up. 

I started the year with great gusto.

Not because of the whole New Year, New Me bullshit, but because I had an idea for a book that I wanted to test with my community…and I needed something to motivate me to move.

The truth is so many women were still feeling the after effects of the pandemic, and were beating themselves up more than ever for not having gotten back into the habit of running, or perhaps more generally were just struggling with the stop-start nature of running. 

So mid January I launched Kickstart Your Running, a book and an online course/challenge (I will be running it again this year if you fancy it), more than 150 women took part and we had a blast.

I had a bit of an ulterior motive really because I had to kickstart my own running, because at the end of 2021, while recovering from COVID, I decided I needed a challenge, and I am not sure there is a challenge bigger than running the Sierra Leone Marathon….in support of the charity Streetchild.

So in January I committed to doing parkruns weekly again, as I worked towards hitting my 100th parkrun goal.

February saw the launch of updated branding and a new website for TFTR which was long overdue, the original website hadn’t really been touched in 9 years. For anyone new to this blog, I set it up after coming last in a race back in 2010…but didn’t turn it into a proper business until 2013 after being made redundant from my job, and welcoming my daughter Rose into the world.

In March I headed off to FitFarms, a fitness bootcamp which over the past 15 years I have attended a number of times. The break from normal life, and being catered for (in all ways) for a few days was exactly what I needed to support my marathon training.

I took part in my first half marathon (London Landmarks) in more than 2 years upon my return to London…and remembered just how much I love BIG races. It did however make me realise how much more training I needed to do for my upcoming marathon.

And so I started to really dig deep.

I did a lot of training on my Peloton bike…windows closed, fan off, to try and replicate the conditions of West Africa. 10 mile rides on tired legs after parkrun on most Saturdays. I also spent time in the pool and at my closest open water swimming venue The Royal Docks…my strategy for this marathon wasn’t just about miles in the legs, it was about getting back my strength and fitness more generally.

In April I headed off to Ibiza for a week with Rose…it was what my soul needed, but I didn’t do as much training as I would have liked. I did however finish the month off on a high, celebrating my 100th parkrun with friends, big pik hellium balloons and cake…I mean what’s not to love?

The following day I did my longest training session, 18 miles run walking around the mean streets of London, followed by 10 miles on my bike. 

As part of my partnership with Streetchild I was taking a small team of women from the TFTR community, Adele, Francis, Trudy, Kate, Rachel, Paula and Victoria…what brave souls they were to say YES to this adventure of a lifetime. I had set us the ambitious target of raising £100,000 for the charity…we would go on to raise just short of £20,000 and my partnership with the charity continues (so if you fancy it for next year, let me know ASAP)

May flew past in a blur and before you knew it we were on a flight on route to Freetown…you can read about the EPIC adventure here, needless to say this trip was lifechanging.

When I came home, I found it hard to get back into everyday life. I didn’t want to run and I was in a bit of a mojo funk with everything. I did however knuckle down and write the book I had been meaning to write all year, Half Crazy…a book about long distance running and mental health, the lessons from the Sierra Leone marathon made for a perfect final chapter in fact.

And with that I launched an online programme for women wanting to get up to the half marathon distance, and between July and October more than 70 women did just that. It was my fav challenge of the year, the support for one another was incredible.

I took a bit of a break from sport in July and August, took myself off to some music festivals and a cheeky little holiday to Portugal with Rose. I was supposed to be training for a half marathon, but I dipped out of that commitment even though I felt a bit bad doing so.

To make myself feel better I updated my most popular book The Fat Girls Guide to Marathon Running, which I originally wrote back in 2018 (and has more than 200 positive reviews)…and I have run 3 marathons since then, and we’ve had a global pandemic, so it felt only right to update it. 

In September I started a new fulltime job. I haven’t had a fulltime job since my last redundancy 10 years ago, with my running business and my work as a life and business coach keeping me busy, but now felt like the right time to make this shift, and I still get to do TFTR stuff on the side which is great.

This job security helped me to made the bold decision to start looking for a new property to move into.

I have lived in East London for more than 40 years, and with the pandemic, and a range of other factors I just knew it was time to go. One of the first things I did was put a spreadsheet together of the areas I was looking at, and what sporting/leisure facilities they had…including which local parkruns were near.

Bishop Stortford in Hertfordshire ranked highly on my list, I have friends who live here, it is easy to get back into London, and there were more than 10 parkruns within a 30 minute drive, which felt exciting. So I continued to look at properties, but also did a bit of parkrun tourism to go check them out.

Then I found it.

The place.

My dream home, in a tiny village in East Herts, a 15 minute drive to Bishop Stortford.

We have been here for just short of a month now, and I love it. YES it is a big change from our lives in East London, but the space, the slower pace of life, being in nature…it has made such a difference to my mental health, and to my desire to exercise.

Since moving in, I have got back into the habit of yoga, I am enjoying my Peloton bike which now has its own space, I have been for an early morning run, and the most amazing 4 mile hike. We have had snow since then, so outdoor stuff has kinda stopped a bit…but I know it will ramp back up again. 

The data and stats from the year…

  • I ran 150+ miles over the year 
  • I took part in 16 parkruns (6 different venues)
  • I cycled on my peloton for 30+ hours
  • I covered more than 400 miles on my bike
  • I took part in 1 marathon, and 1 half marathon
  • I swam in 2 docks, 3 oceans, and 1 pool
  • I tried 9 rounds (boxing circuits), fitclub (boxing to music), a peloton tread, and vivobarefoot shoes for the first time
When I sat down to write this review I wondered if I would have much to share. It is so easy to skip past what you have achieved. It is easy to miss the lessons, to beat yourself up for not being consistent, or taking breaks or not hitting other goals.
It is easy to look at other women and compare yourself to them, but the fact is we only have to answer to ourselves.
I am finishing off the year so proud of what I have achieved, and more determined than ever to continue the work of TFTR.
In January I will be sharing some of the ways that women can get involved, so if you haven’t joined our FREE community yet what you waiting for?
Join our newsletter below.
I hope 2022 was kind to you, and that you got to move your body in ways that felt good to you.
I hope 2023 brings with it easier times, and the strength and courage to do the things we set our hearts to.

Hoping that 2023 is a year of improved health and happiness?

I have just the right thing.


  • Get clear on your goals
  • Make commitments to yourself 
  • Measure your progress
  • Reflect on your successes
  • Be part of the nobody left behind movement

The first 100 copies are in full colour, and you will be invited to a FREE goal setting workshop in January.

Grab your limited edition launch copy here


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