Marathon running after a diagnosis of GPA

Marianne Page & Emma

I’m the short one in the photo. The other lady is my running buddy Emma. We were about to run a half marathon-my first! I was to do one two years previously, but it all went terribly wrong.

To begin with,I was injured and out with an itb injury, although it was due to get worse. To cut a long story short, the lacrimal gland in my eyelid had swollen to five times the size it should be. This conclusion came after, as you can imagine quite a few tests and scans ect. ( shudders as I remember the MRI) A biopsy confirmed gramuloma which is an inflammation to the gland.

After months of taking steroids,in which time I had eaten my body weight in cake ( telling myself that checking if the goodies were cooked counted as a squat!!),I lost muscle mass. My once well fitting Lycra was by now really quite, hmm, lumpy!

I have so many people to thank in giving me what I needed to start to fight again, if putting on the running gear wasn’t enough of an incentive!

My son, spike, was doing a 2.6 mile run at school and asked me to join him, needless to say at 7 he was a much better runner than I had become- but this was only the start.

Then once I had become stronger, and had come to terms with the effects of methotrexate (anyone taking this has my upmost sympathy), I was overwhelmed when my friend Em said she would run a half marathon with me. She this when we bumped into each other while picking the children up from school. (she had done at least 4 at this point) I believe I cried in the playground unable to think that someone could be so kind as to help me with my dream. (And maybe some of it was fear, that I was about to commit to running 13.1 miles).

I joined the wonderful Norfolk gazelles, and later had the good fortune to find a great coach in Sol Ibrahim. He has put me through my paces and I’m quite sure at times almost killed me!! (for that I thank you!)

I ran that half marathon in a respectable time (1.56)

So here I am taking on the Brighton marathon. I consider myself so incredibly lucky that I am in a position that I can run and to have found life again.

We all go though life’s journey and learn along the way. Life is short grab it with both hands, live it and love it!

Marian Page