It was only when I set and achieved some basic goals that I got hooked on running.
On and off over a few years I tried to get into running, it never felt right. Without any clue what I was doing, I threw myself into it. I suffered the pain of shin splints. Even to the point where I was taking ibuprofen before I went out to run. I floundered along with zero regard for technique.
Roll on August 2019, we have two young kids, 2 + 4 years old and despite making an effort to eat well, I’m in need of some endorphins. I dug out my trainers and went out for a run. A 5k in under 40min, bloody hell, I’ve still got it. As usual, I went too far too soon, luckily I didn’t injure myself. But what it did do is reignite my desire to run.
If I’m going to make a go if it, I need to take it easy, not go all out and ruin it, balancing that with holding my interest, I needed some goals.
Firstly, I’m seeing people posting run data and toting Garmin watches. Being a nerd I needed a Garmin Forerunner 235. At £150 it wasn’t easy to justify without being a regular runner, I had a goal. Work up to running 7miles comfortably and I can have a Garmin. Around the same time I’d started seeing races advertised (the scourge of tracking cookies). Without a great deal of thought I booked a 10k at Aintree for October 2019 with Run Through, how bad could it be?
6th October came and I turned up at Aintree Racecourse ready to go, Garmin on my wrist. 50:17 later and 87th of 305 runners, I crossed the line, grabbed my medal and flapjack and grinned the biggest smile I’d done in a long time.
The bug had bitten. Since then I completed another 10k, this time at Tatton Park in November (46:58 94/796), then back to Aintree just before Christmas for the half marathon (1:44:13 89/301).
Before new year, I booked a place at the Liverpool Rock n Roll marathon for May 2020. It has now been postponed until October. If that happens, I’m excited to train for it, then get there and run.
Some people join a club, others like me can’t dedicate fixed times to run. I found Lonely Goat Running Club. They are a very community spirited club with zero obligation to do anything, perfect.
Whatever you do, get out there, run your own run. Don’t beat yourself up when it’s not a great run, the next one will be better!
If you think people are staring at you, they probably are and thinking ‘I wish I could do that’. Enjoy it!