The Quest Begins (well continues really…)

My running journey began some 15 years or so ago when it was suggested that I should do some more exercise (well more than nothing), eat more healthily and drink less alcohol (more water). So armed with new trainers my running journey began.

Now don’t get me wrong in my youth I was pretty active, 3 matches of football a week and more whenever I could but running was limited to sprints – 400m that was long distance to me and as for cross country… however my first run, well I managed 5 mins in one go at around 5-6mph before I had to walk, but little by little I managed longer and further.

“Hey lets sign up for the Great North Run”, “Yeah, why not?” I replied and just like that I was entered in to my first race. No first race 5k parkrun for me, I’d entered a full blown half marathon! 8 months of training and a finish time of 2:00:05, yep can you believe I ran for two flipping hours and 5 seconds, so I had to come back and do it all again to shed those 5 seconds! And so the quest to runner faster began.

Some 15 years later and despite a break for 5-6 years in the middle, my quest to keep getting faster despite getting older burns just as deep. Just over a year ago I joined a running club, Radcliffe AC, for many reasons but primary amongst them was, yep you guessed it, to get faster. It worked – this year I improved my 5k to 19:56 (first sub 20), my 10K to 40:19 (yep 19 flipping seconds!) and my HM to 1:32:42, all of which are lifetime PB’s – not bad for 54 year old!

So why blog now? Well it seems that my running journey is morphing into more than just going for a run and doing the odd race. I’ve recently passed my LiRF (Leadership in Running Fitness) on my path to becoming a running coach. Inspired by the book Older Yet Faster by Keith Bateman and Heidi Jones, I have begun transitioning my running style to help me improve my running times and stay injury free. I’m also looking at trying out a new way to train for longer distances like half and full marathons – more on that one in another post. Finally I’m looking at changing my diet to have a different carb/protein/fat balance with a view to seeing how that impacts my performance.

My aim is to help others (you) in your running journey by sharing my experiences for I once came across a phrase which went something like – clever people learn from their mistakes but the truly wise learn from the mistakes of others – hopefully by sharing my mistakes you can be truly wise.




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