10 May, 2013

A runners heart: bye bye old trainers

I got these trainers when I first started running, 3 long years ago now. Me and these shoes have been through a lot together. We've run on average around 20 miles a week (not including the weeks of laziness, illness and plain old CANNOT be bothered!) If my Maths serves me rightly, that's over 3,000 miles. 3,000 miles of sweat, pain, euphoria, anxiety, headaches, hills, anger, frustration, joy, sunshine, streets, parks, people, meditation and me-time. That's 3,000 miles of uphill work, 3,000 miles of confidence, 3000 miles of self-esteem and 3,000 miles towards the person I want to be. It's no coincidence that in that time I feel like my life has accelerated 3,000 miles from where I was back then - up and up and up I go!

I have written before about my love of running and of it's importance to me, and while I am in a happy place right now, all those things still stand if not more than they did to begin with. I'm not your average runner in some ways and someone once said to me I don't have a typical runners body (I am curvier than the usual long-distance waifs) and I thought 'yeah, but I have a runners heart.'

When I'm sad, I put on my trainers and run for miles and miles until the sadness dissipates as my perspective grows. When I'm happy I celebrate with a run. When I'm feeling heavy I get out there onto those pavements and instantly feel like a lighter load. Running is my best friend - it never fails to put my mind at ease and it's always always always there. Any time. When I can't run for illness or busyness or just plain LIFE getting in the way, it actually hurts my heart. But it's never longer than a week or so before I am back out there again.

I recently moved house and my entire running pattern that I'd known for a long time had to shift, for weeks I couldn't run on the streets and I can no longer go early morning running, like I used to love and depend on so much. It was so hard at first, I actually thought I was losing my mind without that release and that need to just be alone with my thoughts and the quiet of  Sheffield at 6am. I have adjusted though and now I just run differently - I go on the treadmill for miles before work, and I make sure to get out and do a big fat run round the city every weekend that I can. A runners heart always finds a way!

This Sunday morning I will be running with these trainers for the very last time, in the Sheffield half marathon - for the trainers are old, worn, grey, with holes in and they are no longer supporting my pained back! I got me some new snazzy ones and I am sure me and them will create our own, new memories  It feels so sad throwing away the old ones, purely for the fact that it feels like saying goodbye to a massive, pivotal chapter of my life. But as they say, out with the old, in with the new - I can't wait to find out what me and the new trainers will go through together over the next few years. If the last 3 years are anything to go by, it is going to be a bumpy yet brilliant journey.

(It's not too late to sponsor me.... www.justgiving.com/hanrunhan)


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