January 2, 2016

Run, runner, run!

About that whole running thangggg. 

Since 2011, I have kept track of my kilometres and race results. This is a great practice in looking back at where you have been and where you want to go. In 2014, I shared a look at my running goals, mileage and progress, read the whole bit here. To kick off 2015, I revised my goals before jetting over to Kenya for seven weeks of training, travel and adventure. 

In keeping up with the tradition, I am pausing (briefly) to take stock of the numbers from the past year. 

Undoubtedly, running brought me to amazing places; Kenya, Florida, California, Washington, Oregon, British Columbia and Ontario. I moved to the West Coast with Michael, and we started training with the Vancouver Falcons Athletics Club. With friends, I helped create a community run that raised $4190 for the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre. I proudly coached 24 athletes towards their individuals goals and athletic pursuits with Gusto Running.

Coming off of a strong start to 2015 (training in Kenya followed by a few big races), I hit the wall. Not "the last ten kilometres of a marathon" kind of wall, just a general lack of enthusiasm for running. As a coach and athlete, I now know when to take cues from my body. Through the fall, I took it down a notch to rediscover my love for the sport. I ran without a watch (most of the time) and cheered on a number of my teammates to new personal best times. During this downtime, I focused my energy on the athletes I was coaching, and helped ignite a community of badass runners in Vancouver to come together for something bigger at the inaugural Run to Give YVR.

Often my message at this time of the year is about simply getting out there, and I feel it's important to build on that—getting out there might mean exploring a new activity, sport or terrain. If you run, are you feeling 100% psyched about the races you have planned? I went to Kenya looking to experience something profound, and that was achieved through the raw newness of the experience. Is there a destination, retreat, workshop, event or race that has been on your radar for years? Perhaps that is something to explore more seriously.

On a daily basis we crisscross the footsteps of others, the next few months are going to be about supporting the athletes I coach, and training for the Boston Marathon—only on this return trip, I will have the honour of seeing the race through my brother's eyes, as he takes on the famous course for the first time. What an incredible opportunity.

No matter where our feet take us this year, let's be sure to make time for reflection and go for the gusto, always.