I love medals. I really love them. But let me tell you a secret that hardly anyone knows. The first time I crossed a finishing line and was offered a medal I had no idea what to do with it – so I said no thank you. Can you believe that? It’s true. I had no idea that finishers medals even existed back then.
I don’t know why I didn’t accept that medal. I hope I didn’t appear ungrateful. I was just a bit astounded that my run was worth a medal. That was back in the day when I apologised for my terrible running. When I would tremble and quake at start lines, glancing over my shoulder repeatedly waiting for the running police to escort me away from where an Unsporty Woman didn’t belong. When my running confidence was non-existent. When I needed Pauly to build me up after each and every run. I didn’t feel like a runner at all.
Let five years roll down the track and many many many kms… and here I am a medal connoisseur. A discerning judge of all things bling am I. No medal no run. Well, not quite. I will run events without medals and have run many. But I do love an event with a medal this is true. I prefer events to have medals. I’d rather events with medals. mmmmm Medals!
When I look at the growing collection of race day photos and medals in our lounge room I wonder what guests to our home think. I’ve heard such displays described as brag walls. This doesn’t sit well with me… it’s not bragging… is it? I hope it doesn’t come across that way.
What does this arrangement of race day loot say to me?
It says I finished. It says I clocked up many lacklustre and often tough kms in training. It says I didn’t quit. It says in a big loud shiny way that YOU ARE A RUNNER!
I do love medals ❤
Enter the Virtual Run. The first virtual run I entered was because a running buddy was organising it. She is a Type 1 Diabetic and has been for 30 years. She has her own special fund raising charity called Kms4Kids. She runs and does all sorts of things to raise funds to help kids with Type 1 Diabetes. Kms4Kids had a virtual run so I entered to support her. I signed up, I logged the kms in the designated time and a very nice medal came in the mail.
Louise joined in with this one AND in the process got the Virtual Running bug. Since then she’s done a few and so have I. We signed up for the Indigenous Marathon Project. And January this year we signed up to run 100 kms for the month in support of the Make a Wish Foundation.
There is absolutely nothing virtual about this running for a virtual medal thing! They are real live kms. Louise and I are both goodie-two-shoes, if we sign up and say we’ll run the kms, we run them.
I said that I wouldn’t do too many of these virtual runs. I did say that. But how could I resist raising funds to fight the terrible growing trend of domestic violence in my beloved Australia? I could not say no. So I’ve entered another one, the Run 4 Love Virtual Run (I’ve committed to running 150kms in February for this one but there are all different distances as well as a supporters medal).
Medals are an outward sign of a finished race. I do love them. They encourage me. Each Friday when I dust the lounge room (oh yes, a creature of routine am I) the medals underneath my big photo rattle, jingle, chink and chime. They sing a song to me that says anything is possible if only you try. Together in harmony they chorus You ran all those kms, you can fulfil your running dreams one race at a time.
Medals ❤ so much more than a bit of metal on the end of a ribbon. They are a symbol of dreams come true.
Happy running 🙂