Like the Wind magazine giveaway

Ever since the first issue of Like the Wind magazine was released I’ve had in the back of my mind a goal to have an article published in it. If you’ve not come across the Like the Wind before it’s an independent magazine containing articles and illustrations that the authors/artists contribute free of charge. The magazine has stories written by runners about running; the races they’ve done, the reason they run or simply about the running they do. The ethos of the magazine aligns perfectly with my approach to running and what I enjoy writing about. But as ever with these things you need to make the time to sit and actually have a go at writing something.

Earlier this year I found myself on a long haul flight to Canada for work and decided to see if I could get down in words the idea that had been floating around my head for a little while. Fuelled by the lack of distraction a plane provides and a glass of red wine (the ideas always flow a little easier with some lubrication) I put finger to keyboard and the end result can be read on p26 of issue 20 of Like the Wind magazine! I shan’t spoil the story but will tell you that the article is about my ‘why’.

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Getting a coach

I did something radical in November, something that I thought I’d never do because I just didn’t need to. I got a coach. Even now it feels a little odd saying that, after all I’m a qualified coach myself with plenty of experience, so why do I need a coach? Well let me explain.

I’m not one for cheesy motivational quotes or sharing inspirational words on Instagram but I do have a few personal mantras to help guide me through this crazy world and the following is in the top 3 – “stupidity is doing the same thing twice and expecting a different result”. Last summer I found myself writing weekly training plans and then consistently struggling to complete even 50% of the plan. Not because I physically couldn’t, but rather I wasn’t able to hold myself to account as I had in the past to be disciplined in getting the sessions done.

With this on my doorstep I wanted to be fit enough again to be able to go on adventures
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Broadway marathon 2016 race review

Sometimes you have those moments in life where everything slots into place and for a short while it feels like the puzzle is complete. The last 7 days have been precisely one of those moments and I’m going to keep surfing the wave for as long as a I can so make no apologies if this post is very happy and positive!

Broadway marathon 2016 goal achieved

Last week was my last week working for a company I’d worked for since graduating 11 years ago. I’ve taken voluntary redundancy and been job searching for the past month which I can confirm is exhausting when you have a family and a day job to keep going too. But last Tuesday I was offered a new job that is just perfect, no commute and a really good role that will challenge me. Already a great week hen on Sunday I took on the Broadway marathon 2016, a final goal race for the year and one where I’d racked up more miles than ever training for. My goal was sub 4 hours and a top 10 finish and I smashed it finishing in 3:53:49 for 5th place. I’ve never been in the top 20 of a race before let alone the top 5, so bloody happy.

broadway-marathon-kit-ready

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The life of a Jekyll and Hyde runner

I seem to have become somewhat of a Jekyll and Hyde runner, a split personality with 2 conflicting sides trying to dominate the choice of training and racing. 2 different approaches to running that have little in common with each other beyond putting one foot in front of the other.

The Hyde runner

This is my natural side; the trail runner, happiest when out on the trails breathing in the fresh air and basking in the glory of the British countryside. A place where pacing, PB’s and 400m reps are irrelevant, where the wildlife you see is as important as the kilometres you cover. It feels like home as you watch the seasons pass over a runners year. The smell of rapeseed in bright yellow fields during the first hot days of the year, the crunch of your feet on grass frozen solid on early January mornings, spotting deer in the dawn light as they munch on the first spring shoots.

Ridgeway view at dawn

I like the escapism of trail running, of getting away from the busyness of modern life and finding some peace. It becomes a form of meditation, albeit one where you puff and pant your way up a hill. I don’t run anywhere particularly tough or high very often but it’s enough of an adventure to make me feel alive.

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