Craig Bullard – My RED January Journey
My story with Suffolk Mind began last January 2019; I’d set a challenge with a team of friends to run 24 miles every day for 7 days on a treadmill. During the organisation of this event, I was told about RED January and how the month long challenge was growing more and more popular each year – and that’s when I said I’d take part in January 2020 – and now here we are.
My target for RED January was to exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes a day, ranging from a 1 mile walk on my lunch break at work, to a 5.5 mile run on my days off. In terms of my own physical fitness, I would easily put myself in the “more could be done” category so RED January was the start of a better, healthier year physically and mentally, so what a great way to kick it off.
After such a busy but also very festive December (I am a butcher, no more needs said does it?), I was really looking forward to getting started. I attacked the first few days of the challenge head-on clearing the cobwebs out of the muscles and joints I hadn’t used for a very long time. I knew I was going to ache as it was a shock to the system, so lots of stretching and foam rolling was needed to keep as fresh as possible.
As we headed towards the middle of the challenge, I had the great opportunity of getting back into the gym at Cross-Fit Orwell, run by Darren and Kirsty – a weeks worth of 30 minute lunchtime workouts were a fantastic way of getting the job done but also kept it interesting. It’s always a superb atmosphere and environment to train in there, so a thank you needs to go to them for giving me the chance to get involved.
The biggest thing I have achieved over this month is the 5.5 mile runs – the first run I completed I had to walk the two major uphill stages. However, on day 26 I was greatly surprised when I ran the whole 5.5 miles and even made it up the two hills. So even from this month alone, physically I have improved, but we have only just begun!
RED January is a challenge, but one performed within yourself where you can set your own targets. The best bit about it is that all the hard work and effort you put in, is for you. It’s a great way to start a new year, allowing you time to focus on yourself and set goals for the rest of the year along the way. The goal I have set myself for 2020 is to be the best me I can be physically and mentally, and without RED January, I wouldn’t have even begun my journey.
Author: Kristina Brinkley