The cliches in this case are all true, the first step really is the hardest. Before you take it you’ll likely go through a roller coaster of emotions, worry, doubt, excitement and determination to name a few. Whatever it is that gets you out that first time you’ll be grateful for it and it will have started your running journey. Like all worthwhile journey’s it’ll have highs and lows and will certainly require some learning along the way but I’m pretty sure you’ll have a ball.
I’ve been through a few starts and stops in my running life. Over Christmas a fairly random conversation with a friend came up about R.E.D January and something just triggered in my mind, this was the type challenge I needed to kick start me. The challenge is simple, run every day. I had no idea what to expect of myself, but thought a 100k month sounded ambitious and challenging. So January 1st, I dug out my trainers and set off on a cold and slow 4k and in the end I felt… exhausted mainly. That 100k target seemed slightly more ambitious than it had but I was at least off.
I’d set up a just giving account for Mind as it was their event after all and this started to add some accountability, people had donated, l couldn’t let them down. So I ran everyday. It wasn’t easy, my wife was incredible, giving me time to run on an evening and at the weekend. My motivation was super high and this improved as I quickly saw results, weight came off pretty quickly and my times down from very slow to a touch better.
Whilst my body was physically adapting I massively struggled with the every day nature of it. I started to find that the aches weren’t going away and runs began with a hobble, this wasn’t so good. What could I do? Well for a start I began to stretch, particularly after a run and foam rolling became a thing in my life. My diet had had to improve, I was craving food, but generally the ‘right’ ones. I didn’t touch chocolate or Ice cream for the whole month.
Somewhere along the line my distances had improved, I was tracking via Nike + and with 6 days to go 150k seemed possible. My goals and expectations of myself had changed quite dramatically inside 4 weeks. I ended the month with 165k logged, over 5k a day. Now this isn’t quite up to Eddie Izzard standard but it got me started and this Dad was out running and on his journey. My motivations had turned into habit and running was now a thing.