Although I write a lot about running, I realise I’ve never written about my running journey from the start, particularly the early years. I’m proud of the fact that I started running in 1994 and have never given up. Although in those early years I didn’t run a fraction of the distance I do now.
From when I started running right until when I started training for Bath half marathon, I never had ‘proper’ running clothes. In those days, you could only get them from proper sports brands and for a student, then someone on a low paid job, then a young mum without much money, that wasn’t affordable. So I ran in band T-shirts which had worn out and were too faded to wear in the day, along with cheap cycling shorts or joggers from the supermarket. My earliest pair of cycling shorts was actually a pair of leggings I’d cut down as they had a hole in them.
In March 2011, nearly 17 years after I’d started running and 15 years after my previous half marathon, I ran Bath half marathon. I scraped over the finish line in 1:59:54 – those six seconds were very important to me!
My early days of running go to show that you don’t have to run a lot to be a runner and you don’t need to be running a half marathon or a marathon within a year of starting to run. In fact, you don’t ‘need’ to run a race ever. Just getting out of the door and running makes you a runner and it is all good for your mental and physical health.
Running when you have small kids at home is hard as you just don’t have the time to do it. If you’re only running a few miles now, hang on in there, it gets so much easier when you can leave your kids at home. It certainly did for me!
You can read about that next…
I was inspired to write this post by my friend Joy aka Pink Oddy. She is running a series of inspirational runners’ stories and was kind enough to feature me. When I wrote out my story, it was too long for her, so I thought I’d use the long version myself!