My alarm went off at 7am this morning. Same as every Saturday for the last 6 weeks. The difference today is I actually pulled myself up and out of bed whereas all previous weeks I have stabbed the 'dismiss' button with revulsion.
The difference today? ACCOUNTABILITY. Something I have managed to studiously avoid my entire life and even more so the last few months. Today I knew I was ready for the challenge.
I have been desparate to run but emotionally it has been utterly devastating for me each time I laced up. Each footfall took me back to races, landscapes, mountains and trails that Russell and I had disovered together.
|He always kept me warm on those freezing start lines!|
It felt utterly wrong to be running without him; my breathing would choke me up and I always ended up walking with tears behind my big dark glasses. He was my running mentor, encourager and he was SO proud of me.
|My 10k PB was set on Chappies Challenge thanks to him!|
I know he wanted me to keep running; this fact alone did not help me push through.
As fate would have it I have discovered a new friend who unwittingly let slip her hidden running dreams.... Little did she know that this was just the fire that needed to be lit in me...I thrive on seeing people who thought they could NEVER run get to a place where they are signing up for races.
|Punishing run through Roodeberg - Our last race together.|
At 0745 we were in the car and at Parkrun. Sweet relief for me to see a NEW parkrun venue with a completely new route so I was not assaulted with memories of the many past runs with Russ.
In fact I can say I enjoyed every moment with my friend. It was a completely new, clean experience and I came away feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
|Early morning beach runs were so great for our souls.|
Running will always remind me of him but slowly I am beginning to find comfort in this instead of pain.
Finding my own footfall again but embracing the fact that he remains part of each and every step.