Yep, if you look really closely, that is me underneath Kim Kardashian (insert inappropriate joke). And Kim Jong-Un (no joke needed).
Six weeks ago I decided to tell my friends about my experience and set up a Justgiving page to support my attempt to run ten marathons for Beat. I overcame my eating disorder over a year ago now, and I am a different person - happier, healthier and more confident. With that said, I am certainly not ashamed or embarrassed about what I went through. Ultimately what happened, happened. Bulimia is an illness just like any other, and I am very proud of what I have been able to achieve since.
Over the past month, I have spoken about it on BBC Radio Suffolk (listen here) and in the local press, but on Tuesday I found out that The Guardian would like to run my story. I had to write 800 words and tried to be completely honest, whilst also very conscious not to trigger anyone currently suffering from an eating disorder, or in the early stages of their recovery.
You can read the article here. Hopefully by telling my story, people who are still suffering will realise they are definitely not alone, and it will encourage others to talk to someone.
Just to clarify the caption, I did not "hang out" with Mo Farah! I think I said hello once, got one photo and ran one mile with him (which I obviously got on video).
I'm not sure if it is because I am male, or if eating disorders are just a taboo subject, but the reaction has been unanimously positive. The article was shared more than 280 times in 12 hours, and my social media went into meltdown. I spent most of the day replying to messages and I have tried to personally thank everyone individually, which made finishing my Research Project very tricky!
I have had over 300 new Twitter followers, including 100+ on Friday alone. I'm no Justin Bieber, so that represents a 50% increase for my humble following! As a Copywriter, it was also cool seeing my work published by a national newspaper. Apparently it was an emotional read, and several people including Adharanand Finn (I have read all his books) complimented my writing.
Tom Williams (of Parkrun and Marathon Talk) fame got in touch and we are arranging for me to be interviewed on one of their awesome podcasts, and I also received a really nice email from Runner's World, who are aiming to publish an interview online in the next month or so, which I am very grateful for. Alas, all this means you are stuck with me for a little while longer!
Good news! HIGH5, (*subtle plug alert*) one of the UK's leading sports nutrition companies, have sponsored me. Hurray! They are providing enough energy gels, drinks bottles and recovery shakes for the next nine marathons, so (*less than subtle plug alert*) you should check out their website here. I have also written a couple of blogs for them, which you will be able to read soon. Expect plenty of shameless product placement over the coming weeks!
Donations have now topped £1,200, which is fantastic. The main goal of this challenge is to get people talking about eating disorders, but any money I can raise for Beat is obviously a bonus. Training-wise, I have a minor injury, so I gave myself a few days off given there are only 13 days until marathon number two. I had to miss the Suffolk Cross County Championships, but l went along as head cheerleader. It had a new venue for this year, the spectacular Heveningham Hall with some stunning views of the glorious Suffolk countryside.
Previously, not exercising or running for more than a day would have been very stressful, but now I am way more relaxed and run for the love it - but ultimately it is only a hobby. The extra time was mainly spent increasing my affinity for gin and tonic, and my addiction to coconut milk porridge! Band of the week has been Future Islands (those dance moves). I gave up on jigsaw puzzles and bought a colouring book. Yes, the single life in January is wild. Even at 27, I am surprisingly terrible at keeping in the lines. I've never actually seen any Harry Potter, so I've been trying to work out who everyone is - Harry is the blonde one right?
Finally, we found out over Christmas that my brother and his fiancée are expecting a baby boy so I could not resist buying the unnamed future Fairbrother his first pair of running shoes, which are hilariously tiny - I've already pencilled him in for the London Marathon in 2035..
I am running ten marathons to raise money for Beat, the UK's leading eating disorder charity. You can follow me on Twitter here, on Instagram here, or on Facebook here. You can also sponsor me via my Justgiving page here.