Three Colours: Willgoss

I'm fairly sure I'm more the Cornetto Trilogy rather than the classic French-Polish trilogy of my formative years...

However, in my pile of running tops I have three colours; three tops of equal meaning to me.  When running this blog through my head as I walked this evening I wondered if I could call them head, heart and legs... But they're all my heart...

Which would give my heart three chambers - and I don't have a Fontan circulation (even though I'm told by some it's the "coolest" circulation to have).

But hey ho - lets give this a go...

My Children Heart Federation tops are probably the one I'm best known for wearing - black and pink these days, it and its predecessors have been the length and breadth of the UK; 5Ks; 10ks, halves (too many to count), my first marathon, ultras... I've killed more CHF tops than I care to think of - after a while the corrosive nature of my sweat will destroy anything...

CHF is my "heart" as it is and always will be home - a charity which is prepared to ask the awkward question, even... no especially, when the "sensible" thing would be to walk away.  Now if that sounds familiar to anyone whose ended up on the wrong side of an argument with me, well what can I say... I've done more, behind and in front of the scenes, to help people in the UK with CHDs than I ever could've done on my own.  The member groups feed into the process and again we've never shied from giving a complicated answer when simplicity just doesn't cut the mustard.  I could wax lyrical about the friends I have around the Trustees table, but simply put if you ever wanted a bunch of experts in CHD on your side, these are the the ones I'd pick...

My next heart chamber - the Children's Heart Association (CHA); my local group, the ones who mange to get this technical gear wearing loon into a black tie at least once a year.  These are like family, people who know me well enough to take the rip out of my antics in a way that only true Scousers and Mancs would get... (I think I'm an honorary northerner).   They never expect anything more than I, or anyone else, can give, and always give more than I can ever imagine.  If you want someone to help you, and you can find them...  The support they give to anyone with a congenital heart condition (unborn, young, teen, young adult or old fart is immense, the fill the gap that other charities can't reach).

Then the pumping chamber - the Knowsley Harriers.  I never in a million years thought I'd be a member of a running club, and a couple I approached took one look at the medical bit of the form and suggested I joined someone else... Knowsley Harriers, well they're made of sterner stuff... or are just as mad as I am.  My dark and dismal year last year meant I didn't get to as much as I wanted to, and I know the Thursday group awaits me when I finally get a break in the timings of my climbing and essay writing.  Friendly, committed to make running fun, as well as deadly serious... Their the ones who scream support whenever another hoop goes past, any run in the NW (and wider) you'll see them... and if you do, go chat... you'll end up joining a running club... one with a social secretary... and a brilliant approach to rehydration...

So, a three-chambered heart - each bit working to make me, and each bit inspiring me to go further, do more, try harder... The only problem is I can't wear three tops at the same time.

On Monday I start the training for the Rock & Roll Liverpool Marathon, which this year I'm running for CHA.  So I'll be running the big races until May in Tommy & Tina... If I get to the club runs then its Hoops, and CHF?  Well, I'm still walking my daft challenge of four mutiday walks, in four countries in a calendar year... My CHF flag is on my backpack, and my top ready to get out when the time comes.

Three simple pieces of cloth, with printed letters and logos... And yet when I look at them, each of them, there's a stirring; pride, I'm allowed to wear these by people I respect, inspiration, others who've worn them have done great things and that faint feeling of a pat on the back, almost ghostly, for whichever top I wear, whoever's colours I wear that day all wish me well...

TTFN, I've the MadDog 10k in the morning and 1400 words on Renaissance Art to write...

Paul



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