Today’s running adventure was with a good friend. Chatting about my blog, Anne asked me what I my writing topic would be today. “Nature” I said, “I’ve seen a lot of wildlife on runs and rides this week.”
Anne joked that I could write about our run and some of the things we talked about. Sorry Anne, you were right. Nature can wait.
Anne and I became friends when we were housemates a few years ago. We both run and cycle and are motivated by having challenges to work towards. That’s not to say we are the same though. Anne has a fearlessness which I just cannot find in me. When mountain biking together I can only watch in admiration as Anne flies down the rocky path ahead of me. On Via Ferrata in Chamonix, Anne seemed to be the only one who truly trusted she was safe on the cliff face. Whether this trust was in her own ability, the equipment use or both I do not know. But it definitely helps.
I had mapped a route around the footpaths of Bulcote and Burton Joyce in Notts. Many of the bridlepaths in the area hold happy memories from my horse riding days. Starting uphill, behind Bulcote church, meant that conversation was a little broken but as we reached flatter ground we were able to chat more freely.
Talk turned to future plans. Anne is considering a half ironman event next year. For those who don’t know, this is a type of extreme triathlon, with longer distances than the Olympic event. Don’t let the ‘half’ bit deceive you though. A half ironman distance involves a 1.2 mile swim followed by a 56 mile bike ride and topped off with a 13.1 mile run!
In 2014 Anne and I both took part in our first triathlon together. It was a sprint distance and I know we were both proud to have completed. Triathlons can be intimidating whatever the distance. It is not just a case of starting and finishing; transitions have to be done from one discipline to the next. Getting into bike gear after swimming and then forcing tired legs to run, straight from the bike, is a new experience.
I have often thought of trying a longer distance but have never got further than thought! Half ironman distances are rarely cheap to enter and the cost of gear can rack up. Really though I am probably just intimidated by the enormity of it. Perhaps if Anne enters one my adventure envy will kick my butt into entering too!
An Adventurous Friend
There is no way I could be An Adventurous Girl without friends like Anne. Yes, I am inspired by Anne but the truth is adventure envy is also a big motivator! Many of my friends love exercise and travel and each time I see them doing something I haven’t done I want a piece of it.
My best friend, Jo, was running a cross country race today. Seeing her Facebook post this morning made me want to be there with her! Not to compete against her but to experience the thrill of a tough run and seeing a finish line.
As I started to write this blog post I realised just how many little adventures I have had with Anne. We don’t see each other often at the moment but have managed to pack in a lot of fun.
Exercise and getting outside has got us both through some tough times. Today we spoke of how good it has been for our mental health to be able to run, walk and cycle. We have both had times in our lives when we have not wanted space to think. Times when it is easier to watch a film or check social media than allow real thoughts in. Even in these times we both discovered the head space provided by exercise was good for us.
However, Wherever, Whatever
We get outside for fun, to feel good, to lose weight and to achieve. Many of our motivations are the same and some different. The way we go about our achievements can vary and we need our time alone.
One thing is for sure though; sometimes, we all need a friend by our side!
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