I can't quite believe it, but I have just entered for this year's London Marathon. In a moment of madness I have decided to run to fundraise for a local charity - The North London Hospice - in memory of my husband's grandma who died there recently.
I am not sure if I am more daunted by the prospect of running over 26 miles or of raising £2,000 for the charity. I am hoping people will dig deep in recognition of my insanity and if not I will just have to run a million cake sales.
But the overwhelming feeling I have right now is of pride. This time last year I was in the early foothills of a journey that would take me from being morbidly obese to a healthy weight, but more than just losing weight it has taken me from being someone who had no pride in themselves to a woman who feels thrilled at the prospect of running a marathon.
For all the excitement I felt at looking better and wearing nicer clothes, the thing that has really made all the effort worthwhile is turning myself into someone that I could be proud of, and perhaps more importantly that my husband and children could be proud of. I will never forget the feeling of seeing all my boys waving and cheering as I completed my first 10K race in Finsbury Park. This for a mum who had once been so large she couldn't keep up with them in the park.
I was so proud of myself for showing that with determination and dedication you can turn your life around. Lots of people ask me what my secret is and really I don't have one. I just think that if you want something badly enough you will achieve it. I was sick of hating myself and I was terrified of setting a bad example for my sons. I want them to believe they can do anything if they work hard and put their backs into it. I want them to know that while it might not come easily, you can do it.
I know a lot of people think I am mad for becoming so obsessed with running, but I don't think they understand what it has given me in return for my dedication. It has saved my sanity during hard times as nothing clears your mind like a long run outdoors, it has allowed me to swap a body that I hated for one that I trust to carry me for miles and miles without giving up. It has shown me what you can achieve if you put your mind to it, so what's not to love about running?
Of course it is tough and when I am dragging myself through an arduous training routine I often think longingly of collapsing onto the sofa, but then I remember how pleased I will feel with myself if I don't give up. I know that no matter how hard and how exhausting training is, it will be worth it in the end.
So the next few months promise to be even more challenging that I anticipated, but at the moment my only goal is to simply pass the finish line without passing out. Wish me luck!
Oh and if you want to sponsor me and help me reach my target please click on the marathon logo above or visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/UrsulaHirschkorn