On Christmas Day 2018 my book was published on Amazon. Yesterday, New Year’s Day, I went on a park run (5k) and I took the time to reflect on how becoming a runner has significantly impacted by ability to write and finish my book.
My running journey
I started running In May 2016, joining a beginners running group, at a local women’s running club following a conversation (over a glass of wine or two) about my lack of fitness at a party. I hadn’t run since I was a kid and frankly, I was terrified. Terrified that I would look silly in my new running gear, my kids would laugh at me, and that I would be left behind. What I didn’t realise was that running would make me feel so - alive.
I started writing a book, properly, in January 2018 and soon realised that the most important quality I, personally needed, was one that running had taught me - perseverance.
For example, here is a typical conversation I have with myself when I run; the second example showing how I adapt it in my writing conversation.
This is what goes through my mind when I run (starts @1 mile and reoccurs at regular intervals):
“Everything hurts. I can’t continue to run. I am not a runner.”
“Is anything really hurting? Any sharp pains?”
“Just concentrate on running to the next lamp-post, and then you can stop.”
(Repeat several times until you forget that you are ‘not a runner’ and the hurting has subsided)
Before you know it you are another mile closer to the finish line. One step at a time
This is what goes through my mind when I have a writing day (starts when I sit at my computer):
“I don’t know how to break this idea down into words. I am not a writer.”
“Make yourself a pot of coffee, sit down at your computer, set your alarm for 25 minutes.”
“OK, but as far as I know I will be staring at the screen for 25 minutes.”
“Just concentrate on writing a phrase using words that describe your idea.”
(Repeat several times until you forget that you are ‘not a writer’ and the words are flowing)
Before you know it you have written a page. One word at a time
The second key quality that running has developed in me is - self-confidence.
I had been running for around 18 months, when, to my surprise, the CEO came and said to me that since started running, I had changed; I was stronger in myself. This was a revelation. I had expected to feel stronger physically, but I didn’t expect to be stronger in myself. Running has bought me confidence in myself as a person, in who I am, that I have something important to bring to the world.
If you are facing 2019 with a book in you that needs to come out - or indeed any dream that you feel is beyond you - why don’t you consider learning to run?
You can buy my book by clicking on the following: ‘Shaping your Workplace Culture: a practical guide’
My running club is called Brighton and Hove Women’s Running Club (www.bhwrc.org) and we love to welcome new people.