The parkrun guy
There is a guy at parkrun. He is there pretty much every Saturday. He’s newish to running. He’s a bit overweight and has struggled around that 5km course most Saturdays for the last 12 months. Launceston parkrun will celebrate its first birthday next Saturday.
This guy, whose name I don’t know, but whose smile I do know very well, is a total inspiration to me.
I’ve passed him many times but he is always happy. He puffs and pants all the way around but gives the biggest smile as he goes over the finish line. I’m truly in awe of his dedication to running. Even though I only see him on a Saturday I KNOW he is running and perhaps doing other fitness work throughout the week, because today I saw him and I could see the change.
He is standing taller, his weight has dropped noticeably. His running is getting more determined in posture, there is more I can do this in his stride, he has a runner’s aura about him that is almost tangible.
He is an inspiration. I take heart from his accomplishment. He encourages me, without even knowing it, to run and to keep pursuing my dreams just like he is.
I read the most beautiful post by Em today about being thankful on her blog EmskiRuns!. I read this just before I headed off to parkrun and it got me thinking about being grateful, particularly about being grateful for running and all that it gives to me on a daily basis. But most specifically for my running friends, for their inspiration, encouragement… for their listening ears and warm hearts. For their company on long runs and short. I’m grateful to parkrun for introducing me to so many likeminded souls.
The Little Blue Flash
Today at parkrun the Little Blue Flash, as Husband has dubbed her, ran with me (Little Blue Flash because she runs very fast and sometimes wears blue, simple if you are a farmer like Husband 🙂 ). She is so FAST, SPEEDY! But she decided to take it easy and run a bit slower with me today. It was so nice. I did something today thanks to my friend that I never thought I would ever be able to do. I ran and talked for a whole 5kms. And while my friend was running much slower than usual I was actually running at a pace that is a bit faster to my usual training pace… and I still managed to talk. In the early days of running talking and running was just something I couldn’t do. Often when I participated in fun runs I’d hear people talking and think how can they do that??? Even one of our running buddies who was just ahead of us most of the way (until he zoomed off for the last 1km) remarked that all the way around he could hear two women talking constantly (oops…sorry). It just goes to show how far in this fitness journey I have come. Being able to talk and run at a reasonable pace for a whole 5kms is a huge milestone!
The Little Blue Flash has only been running for a couple of years. She has come such a long way with running and fitness that when she talks about her story I’m completely inspired. She has gone from struggling to run just a few meters to finishing a half marathon in such a short space of time. AND she will be at the top of that mountain on 17 November too. Thanks Em and J for reminding me about what it means to be thankful for the gift of running but more importantly the gift of running friends.
On being an Insp
My children talk in abbreviations regularly. Some I understand, others I don’t. A party is a part. Definitely is def. The city of Melbourne is Melbs. Sydney is Syd. Today I learnt a new one: Insp is short of inspiration.
I received this text from Blondie Daughter #1 at lunch time today – Blondie is in yellow and my replies are in pink…
As a mum the people I most want to inspire, to set a good example for are my children. I haven’t always done this and I won’t always do this because I am human and me and mistakes… we just go together! But I feel very humbled that in this instance I’ve managed to be an inspiration to my daughter. I know that Brown-eyed daughter #1 also believed I could conquer Ocsober because as soon as this first-year-out-of-uni-accountant heard I’d registered for Ocsober she sponsored me. I found this to be one of the most humbling things ever. Despite my girls considering Ocsober to be a huge challenge, they believed I could do it. (I wrote about Ocsober in the previous post). Sucking it up Sweetheart… yes, ok, will do Blondie!
Being an insp?
We just never know who is watching our running journey. We don’t know who we are inspiring to keep moving forwards. The parkrun guy tells his story each Saturday morning for all our fellow parkrunners to read, enjoy and marvel at. The Little Blue Flash and all my parkrun running buddies, each time I see them, never fail to inspire me in so many many ways… from taking the time to tell their story through conversation, to running with some us back-of-pack runners… to their claps and cheers as we run over the finishing line. Runners and inspiration seem to go together hand in hand.
Happy running 🙂
PS someone else has completely inspired me this week with some amazing photos of her transformation. I will leave this for another post though… it deserve one of its own.