Saturday, 24 June 2017

Once a runner always a runner...

My wife sometimes tells me I don't share things very often... her way of saying I'm not always a good communicator at times, probably not a good trait for someone who works in coaching and indeed for someone who tries to keep a blog from time to time... all be it not very often these days but thought I'd share a few thoughts...

Firstly one thing I have found with writing a blog is that it often makes you reflect on things that often just flash by before you know it.... I guess that's why people keep a diary or indeed partly why athletes like to keep a training diary even if they don't always appreciate it at the time.  A little while back in fact I was looking through one of my old training diaries (for reasons I forget now) but there was an entry about a club race I did back in 2002 for the then Channel Island athletics club in which I was disappointed to be out kick by an under 20 athlete from the club Windsor Slough Eton and Hounslow. The athlete in question was a fresh faced Mo Farah. It seems he's done this to better runners than me since.

A bit off topic but I'm in the reflective mood for a reason...At 38 years old (whilst perhaps just a number for some), does mean I have been training and competing seriously for arguable 17-18 years... whilst I have been involved in athletics since I started secondary school it was not until 2000/2001 where I felt I decided to focus my efforts more, getting myself a coach for one and also focusing purely on my running and putting other sports, namely football to one side.  Over the last year with injury striking again getting back running never mind competing seemed like it would never happen at times. With an injury that seemed like it would never heal and could not be properly diagnosed I would be lying if I hadn't contemplated retirement, on more than one occasion. During the last year though despite not being in position to attempt or achieve my previously set out goals for 2016 and 2017 I should say a big thank you to Butterfield Bank in Guernsey, they have supported me this past 2 years. Originally with the targeting of gaining Olympic and World Champs selection unfortunately not to be but Butterfield have continued to support me and I hope despite the change of goals I can continue to fly the flag a little while longer.

I am back running and training regularly all be it a little less than some previous years but things are going quite well and I am enjoying my running again and this week I go into what will be my 10th and effectively my last Island Games (if you don't know what the island games are checkout www.iiga.org). The games are an event that despite my focus having been on other things in recent years has always been something I have enjoyed being part of and offers a rare (bi-annual) occasion to be part of a Guernsey team. Scarily however it dawned on me that I have been going to the island games longer than most of the athletes in the athletics team have been born... if i didn't feel old before! It might be my last island games but I'm not quite done with running, now that I am back in action I still want to make the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast but in all likelihood after this i will wind down my competitive ambitions. One thing is for sure though as long as my body is healthy and in one piece (which will be a lot easier when you don't have to push the envelope quite so often) I will always want to go out running. I guess once a runner always a runner! 

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