Running – I don’t love it, but….

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…I get to spend half an hour or so with my favourite tunes blasting into my ears. Listening to my iPod can transport me back to being a teenager again, which is guaranteed to make me feel good.

…I love the fact that I could outpace my teenage self! I couldn’t run 5km when I was 16.

…when I run past people, they don’t know if I’ve been out running for 5 miles or 5 minutes! I can pretend to be Paula Radcliffe.

…I’m setting an example for my children.

…I’m doing what I can to stay healthy. Running/jogging/brisk walking for half an hour, three times a week will not only help to keep my weight manageable, and therefore reduce my risk of diabetes and cancer but will keep my cardiovascular system in good condition too. Weight bearing exercise is also good for keeping the bones strong and reducing the risk of osteoporosis.

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…exercising outdoors is good for the soul. I watch the seasons change through the blooming of the hedgerows. Sometimes I’ve got to go in search of a nice woodland trail to get a hit of bluebells or wild garlic in flower but I’m just as happy running through the neighbourhood and enjoying the gardens change from snowdrops to daffodils to roses.

…it costs me nothing but time. This can be a bit of clincher. There’s no doubt that I’ve made time to do this now that my youngest is at nursery and I know it’ll be even easier when September comes and he’s at school full time. I take my hat off to all you working parents who fit your exercise in around other commitments.

…it’s taught me that commitment works. Why has it taken me 40 years to get a better understanding of this?

…if I want to stick at training, I need a target. My motivation is limited otherwise. Last year it was the ‘Total Warrior’ in August, and indeed, we are doing that again soon. This year, I started the year training for the Keswick Mountain Festival 10km trail run. My training wasn’t really as good as it should have been, but at least I did enough to complete the race.

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If you want to get active and run, I highly recommend downloading the NHS Choices couch to 5k app. It is really well paced for a complete beginner. You won’t believe how
quickly you can build up from running for just a minute and a half to a full half an hour. You don’t need expensive shoes – mine cost about £14 and I’ve been wearing them for over a year with no problem. The one thing I would invest in is a decent bra – it will make a massive difference to you comfort. I like the ‘Shock Absorber’ brand, which I’ve recently seen for sale in Go Outdoors.

Happy running everyone.

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