For as long as I can remember, I have hated running. I would always try to find a way out of running events on school sports days and look for ways to avoid cross country. I even remember being on the sports field with the PE teacher, Mr Nelson, glancing over at me “running” around the field, and me walking but moving my arms and legs in a running motion! I am sure he wasn’t fooled! 
So, in October 2015, when I joined a local running club, signing up to their 10-week beginners running course, no one was more surprised than me. I was, by then, a few years into running my accountancy practice and was looking for a way to shut down at the end of the day, get a little exercise and breathe in some fresh air. 
 
The course involved 1 or 2 weekly run sessions with the goal to be able to complete a 5k run at the end of the 10-week course. Week 1 was just a one-minute run, one-minute walk and repeat session and each week the amount of time we spent running increased. I completed the course and "graduated" at Park Run in December 2015 with a run time of 36:36. I couldn't believe I had done it. I still wouldn’t say that I enjoyed running, but I loved the buzz I felt after a run and planned to continue running. 
 
Christmas 2015 and New Year 2016 kept me busy and of course meant there was less time to run. Then January was filled with tax returns and before I knew it over a month had passed and I hadn’t run. I had been having pain and stiffness in my neck for a few weeks and that was another reason to avoid running. The pain became excruciating and after many trips to my GP and several specialists, an MRI revealed I had a slipped disc in my neck. 
This Saturday, 30 June 2018, over 2 years later, I graduated again, having re-done the beginners course. It has taken a long time, has been painful and I have struggled with motivation. I have learned that I am ridiculously impatient! I found it so frustrating to have to start again – back at week one, but I fully intend to keep up my running and this marks the return to fitness for me. 
 
I always try to take learning points from everything in life. For me this is a fantastic reminder that if you break a challenge down into bite-size chunks, seek some expert help and remember to focus on progress at each stage, you can achieve your goals. 
 
Here at Effective Accounting, we are experts in accounting and tax, and most importantly, we are experts in making the numbers work for you. We will discuss your business and personal goals with you and work with you to negotiate the stepping stones to get to your dream. That may be as simple as maximising your take home pay, support with a VISA application or more complex planning to support a mortgage application for your dream home. 
 
 
 
 
Written by: 
 
Nicola J O'Sullivan -  
Effective Accounting 
 
Founder | Xero Champion | IR35 Expert 
 
 
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