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Outdoors / The Pack / Katie Roby / Trail Running

RUNNING- I THINK I QUITE LIKE RUNNING

Running is for everyone Merrell Ambassador Katie Roby explains, the simplicity of running and how it can cater for every need.

These last few weeks have reminded me of how much I enjoy running in my free time. I survived the "Might Contain Nuts" trail marathon in the Brecon Beacons on a Saturday that saw what can only be described as biblical weather conditions.  I gave my quads a bashing when I took on the legendary Jura fell race. I had another “holiday”, running 165 miles of the Pennine Way before my annual leave quota got used up.  I even broke my only running rule by succumbing to the dark side and racing on the tarmac stuff!

Running is just unbeatable. Simple. Lung busting. Relaxing. Sociable. Quiet. A thought sorter. A reason to explore.  An excuse for a holiday? I guess it is anything you want it to be ...

Its simplicity is what really impresses me. Ultimately all you need is a decent pair of shoes (Merrell offer a fine selection). Then off you go; slowly, quickly, in the pouring rain, in 30 degree heat, through a national park, down the high street, 1 mile, 40 miles.  The options are endless.

Most people have run at some point in their lives, even if it is just for the bus. It’s something we can all relate to. Running around the playground as a kid. Cross country at school. The London Marathon.  The 100m final.  

Running accepts you if you are really fast, or if you are really slow. If you have perfect technique or if you waddle like a duck (that is me!). Novices can compete with the elite. You rub shoulders with each other as you gather on the start line, you run the same route and share the elation as you cross the finish line.

Running pushes your body to the absolute limit.  It makes muscles scream and sweat glands pour. Cleverly, through strategic production of endorphins, all painful memories are quickly removed and replaced with a sense of satisfaction and contentment. The recent encounter with the Paps of Jura was a fine example of how quickly my body forgot the 2370m of ascent over 28km of bog, boulders and scree. 10 minutes after dragging myself across the line swearing “never again” I had signed up for next year.

On the other hand it gives you time to think, to reflect, to work stuff out. Or you think of not a lot and give your brain some time out. It refreshes and declutters.

For me, my favourite bit about running is how it gets me outdoors. It encourages exploration and adventure. It takes you on a journey, a very simple and natural one. I have been to some exceptional places through running. Found little nuggets of beauty that I might otherwise had missed had I been driving, or cycling or walking. 

Well, there you go. I think I quite like running.

19/06/2014
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