Sometimes I don’t feel like I’m a real runner.
I’ve done a few races over the last 30 years but I’ve always cycled between lots of running, then very little running.
A few years ago I even contemplated quitting as a coach because I didn’t feel like enough of a runner.
I decided to continue when I realised that being a runner is more a state of mind than a test you have to pass.
There’s no minimum standard or speed or frequency. You don’t have to train for races or even try to get better.
2 people can do exactly the same amount of running and one will consider herself to be a runner and the other won’t.
It’s purely a state of mind.
I started writing that purely as an opener to today’s message and got a bit carried away, but I’m glad I got it out there!
Anyway, last November as a Ronhill brand ambassador I was invited up to Manchester to the launch of their AW2015 collection.
I got to see what was going to be in the shops the following year, and also the unveiling the Ronhill ‘Run Every Day’ challenge.
The man behind the brand, Dr Ron Hill MBE, is a bit of a running legend.
As well as winning Commonwealth gold in 1970, Ron has run every day for over 50 years. That’s a run streak of 18,500 days.
Seriously, the guy hasn’t skipped a single one, and although he clocked up over 100 marathons in over 100 countries back in the day, most of his daily outings today are slightly shorter.
It was this incredible achievement that inspired the Run Every Day challenge, and there was much excitement about it at the Manchester launch.
It’s start date of October 2015 seemed a long way off last November, but now it’s here and up and down the country runners are taking on the challenge of creating their own running streak.
And perhaps you’ll be inspired to join in the fun as well.
You don’t have to run every day of the month, but the encouragement is to challenge yourself to run as many days on the trot as you can.
There’s no race at the end of it (though there are prizes to be won!)
I have recorded a series of short video on a range of subjects from training to nutrition & mindset, which will be published on the Ronhill website over the course of the month along with a number of other fun things to keep you motivated.
The slightly strange and philosophical opening to this email came from my current lack of running goals.
Since I did my 24 hour ultra in June the only other bit of running I have done is Tough Mudder and the Nottingham half marathon last weekend.
So right now I don’t feel like much of a runner.
Which is why I needed to remind myself that it’s just a state of mind, and that I’ll always be a runner.
I usually recommend training for an event just 3 days a week but challenging yourself with a run streak can give you a different kind of focus.
Mix up your training with short easy runs in between longer harder ones, and you can continue to frolic along injury-free and perfectly happy