I can pinpoint the exact moment this year when for me running became my absolute passion. It was during the Coastal Classic and I had just run a marathon two weeks prior in Adelaide. My quads were screaming at me and I was wondering what on earth I was thinking when I signed up for this event on a runners high!
It was hard. There were hills! Boy were there hills; mountains even…but I was surrounded by nature, and nature lovers and lovely trail running folk who didn’t care about pushing me out of their way to get a great time like out on the road. There was a moment when I was running along the cliffs at what to me seemed like effortless gliding. One with nature and one with my body. There was not another soul in sight and I felt peace. The most amazing uplifting experience I had felt in a long while. It was then that I knew this was it. This was my passion. No matter how my legs ached, my heart yearned for more. I was so fulfilled…more than I had ever felt before and I felt a whisper in my spirit that I would go on to do bigger things and that I would be doing this for a long time to come.
Running doesn’t come naturally to a lot of people. Running can be really really hard work (believe me, ask me after a hard tempo or interval session!), but it can also be the most rewarding thing you have ever done. The joy for me not only comes from the successes I achieve on the road or trail, but from the experiences I encounter.
The other day I was out trail running alone when it started to rain. I felt the stresses of the week leave me as I ran along in the rain, soaking up its freshness on my body, really letting myself feel nature close to me, or when I was running alongside Kirrily who was running in the White Ribbon Ultramarathon; 860km of hot burning roads to bring ‘joy’ and ‘liberation’ to other people suffering from domestic violence.
The people that I have met through running, whether in person or online bring so much joy to my soul. To see or hear someone finally achieve their first 5km, or even their first 500m….to meeting amazing people who sacrifice so much to run and live out their dreams, to be able to use running to give back to the community such as our recent donation to The Stillbirth Foundation.
Joy. Overwhelming joy. Happiness in it’s truest most raw state.
Thats what running means to me.