What made you get into running?
With the old adage ‘your body looks after you until you’re 40 after which time you need to look after your body’ going round in my head I made a concerted effort to get fit as soon as I hit that milestone birthday. Needless to say I turned 40 and promptly did nothing until I was told at 42 I had very high cholesterol that needed to be addressed immediately! That wake-up call was enough to scare me into downloading the NHS C25k podcast, buying my first ever pair of running shoes and signing up for my first ever race (the Herts 10k, 2013) 8 months hence to use as a motivational goal.
What has been your proudest/best running moment?
As an inhaler-carrying, unfit bloke in his early forties with a long-term back complaint and seemingly knocking on the door of diabetes, even the prospect of a series of 60-second runs during session one of week one of the C25k programme seemed so incredibly daunting and ‘impossible’ for me back then and yet here I am eagerly anticipating my first marathon (Brighton 2016) and possibly beyond! So quite simply my proudest or best moment is running itself and being able to do it.
What has been the biggest challenge you have faced?
My weight. Naturally tall and thin with a BMI slap-bang in the middle of normal I was really taken aback by my high cholesterol reading. My weight, although stable is – in my mind – 7-10 pounds lighter than I think it should be and despite me having a HUGE appetite I am very aware that with longer runs and marathon training beckoning I can’t afford to become any lighter particularly as I’m already burning over 1500 calories 3-4 times a week.
Who is your inspiration, and why?
Without wishing to be cringey, the honest answer is the UKRunChat Community, my social media running connections and EVERYBODY who laces up their shoes and makes that effort, fast or slow, long or short distance, to give me that push – that little lift – to get out there and do my thing. Whether it be someone who can run a half marathon in less time than it takes me to boil an egg, or someone who will grow a full beard during a 10k run (I’m mainly referring to the fellas here!) or one of those brilliant folk who cover more miles in a year than a London bus is likely to do, or one of those amazingly determined driven people covering just a mile or two over the course of a Sunday morning, I have equal respect and admiration for them all as each one inspire me in their own way. I love seeing the bling pictures drop into my Twitter feed over the weekend, love the harmless clothing-coloured banter between teams over the course of the week, love getting a virtual pat on the back at 6am before I’ve even got home after a run and love offering my own support to a community of like-minded, brightly dressed Lycra-clad friends.
What are your future goals?
To stay in love with running, remain injury-free and continue banking the miles.
What would be your one piece of essential advice to someone looking to start up running?
What is your favourite piece of running kit?
I was going to say my hole punch / event clip combo, but as a lover of ridiculously early runs my favourite bit of kit would have to be my Uni-Lite head torch. There is nothing more satisfying than running along a pitch-black trail or towpath at 5am with just a halo of retina-burning light, a Wittertainment podcast and one’s thoughts for company.
And finally, what’s your favourite thing about running?
Apart from participating in or volunteering at parkrun I absolutely love turning up at events and bumping into the friends I have met over the past two-and-a-half years. It doesn’t matter where I am in the country, whether I’m there as a runner or supporter it’s great hearing “Hello Adam!” or picking out a familiar face in the most random of places.