“Who loves ya, baby?”

10 Dec

Support. Important, isn’t it? I think so!

I mentioned in one of my earlier posts that I have been running with Cocks Moors Woods Ladies for just over a year now. For many years before that I had wanted to join a running club but had been too nervous to bite the bullet. Was I good enough? Would I have to enter races? Would everyone be ‘proper’ runners? I can’t tell you how pleased I am that I eventually started running with this fantastic group of women.

They steadfastly supported me through my first marathon experience – VLM 2011 – gently building my confidence, offering me an outlet for all of my questions (I spent a good few runs simply debating the merits of a variety of gels!), and kindly tailoring our ‘group run’ routes so I could ‘add on’ some extra miles etc as necessary. All of this for someone who essentially they had just met. This not only made a massive impact on my marathon experience but also taught me how social running can be and how positive it can be to share a lone pursuit with others.

Being supported feels great and I am not only blessed to have CMW but I also have N, my amazing Mum and some good friends who really, really get my obsession with running; however, I genuinely get the greatest satisfaction from being able to support others. Over the summer, a small group from CMW were training for Berlin Marathon. OK, I’ll admit it, it felt good to run long again but my main motivation was being able to ‘pay back’ the support that they had so readily offered me. Suddenly, by being more focused on supporting their goals, I found a real freedom and flexibility in my approach to running, which I had struggled to find before. Did it really matter if I didn’t run non-stop? How much of a problem was it if my Garmin ran out of battery? What was the problem if our route changed from the one we had loosely planned? I hope that my contribution helped them and, in true karma stylee, I was rewarded by smashing my VLM PB by more than 12 minutes in Chester in October. My only regret is that it couldn’t have been with the girls in Berlin…

So here, publicly, I want to say a MASSIVE thank you to the CMW group. You have challenged me, supported me, inspired me and offered me the opportunity, at least twice a week, to truly indulge in my passion with a like-minded group of people. I only hope that if I get through to the final five, I can be an integral support for my Asic’s Target 26.2 fellow runners and, at the same time, bring my increased knowledge and enthusiasm back to the fabulous CMW ladies. PLEASE VOTE FOR ME…

P.s. Thanks for the run this morning Ladies; a great way to spend an arctic morning…and I’m particularly grateful you didn’t disown me in my special high vis hat. Probably not really necessary after sunrise 😉 x

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