Well I guess it has come to that time of the year when I look back over what I have done and I must say I am not too unhappy. Yup there has been a lot of running involved, but there are also a couple of other running related things of which I am proud. This blog is one of them, I never thought I would be able to keep it up, and more than that I never believed anyone would actually read it. Especially as I am a bit useless at self promotion. What I really need is an agent! My attitude has also changed, I have started giving back, having got so much from this lifestyle change I have started to support and encourage others in the best way I can.
Lets start with the running, this year has seen me collect 16 medals for races and 1 for helping out at Virgin London Marathon. That’s 288.7 miles of racing I have done this year thanks to 9 marathons, a half, a few 10k’s and the odd 5 and 10 mile race. That’s not all the running I’ve done obviously, I have covered 1413 miles this year, and although for the first time in 2015 I am properly injured I feel faster and stronger than I ever have before. Not bad for a chap who thought he was going to have a heart attack after completing his first ever race a half marathon 2 years ago last October. I think then my pace was about 12 – 13 minutes a mile, a few months back I ran 13 miles while training and averaged about 8:25. Now I know it doesn’t count really as it was not a race but it just goes to show how things have changed.
Talking of things that have changed my second running related achievement is this blog. I wrote a while back about transferable skills and how running taught me a bit about just knuckling down and getting shit done. This blog is a product of that attitude. I have tried to write blogs, maintain websites and so on before, but I approached this differently. I treated this blog like it was a training programme, it was just about getting it done. The priority was getting an article up a week, topics could be anything related to running however tenuous, length somewhere between 750 and 1000 words. Just get it done, and once the base has been built then you can work on points for style. In some ways that took the pressure off. Just knowing that an article was good enough simply because it had been written meant that success was always achievable. It didn’t matter if it was read, just as miles in the bank are never wasted neither are blog posts. Something else to be proud of this year. I have had 619 visitors to this blog written 37 posts and now have 26 followers. Now I know it’s not much compared to many others but it is more than I expected and I am still going. The most popular article was one I wrote on Parkrun, it got shared on Facebook and summed up a fair few peoples experience I think. If any of you want to share anything to FB or any other social media type things help yourself I would love to see my readership boosted.
OK, so my running and blogging were to some degree planned and worked for. Not everything is like that, for instance this year I started using twitter, in fact twitter is the only social media I use really for running related activities. Over the course of the year I seem to have inadvertently become a figurehead for the use of High 5’s amongst runners. It’s good and a very positive way to encourage others and make them see that the hard work they put in is recognised and appreciated. As a friend I was out running with and showed my technique too put it, “If you have just started out sometimes you can think you are out on a limb, but a High 5 from somebody you don’t know, who obviously does a fair bit of running makes you belong. You are a runner and here is somebody who recognizes that and wants to make you feel better for getting out there.” Yup I have decided to become relentlessly positive and encouraging as an ambassador for the good running can do. Even when driving and seeing a runner outside I say a silent ‘good on ya’, I love it and want others to feel good about it too.
There we have it 2015 the year I ran shit loads for the first time, started a blog that at least some people read, and became evangelical about running.
What did 2015 do for you and your running?