Until one year ago I hated even the idea of going for a run. It was not that I was unfit or unused to exercise – I have always been a cyclist and also play racquet sports. It is just that I had always thought the only purpose of running was to get in position when you were playing other games. It was not an end in itself.
This attitude was deeply ingrained and went back as far as my school days. Although I was quite sporty and played first team rugby, whenever we were forced to go on a cross country run I languished at the back with the weak and the uncoordinated. It did not seem like a lot of fun
The reason that everything has changed is down to my daughter who thought that we should do the Great North Run together. As she didn’t run and I didn’t run it was amazing we had not thought of it before! I was in two minds. I wanted to be involved in a joint enterprise and so deepen our relationship but on the other hand I could not imagine myself really doing it. However my daughter has never been one to be deflected when she fixes on something and phoned me the moment that entries opened for the race, so that we could get a place and she organised a Trailplus training camp in January. There was no turning back.
We never really trained together as she lived 30 miles away but it was a great focus of attention. We were always interested in what we were doing and loved talking about what we had learnt. So it achieved the aim of increasing our communication. However the love of running and the enjoyment of being out side and the need to be out – well that was just totally unexpected.
I had found my new sport.
Not only that so did my wife. She saw how much I got from running and secretly started to run as well. When she felt confident enough she told me and we were a family of three separate runners.
Reason No.1 for running: It is both social and solitary at the same time.