New year, new challenges

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Me and my brother-in-law out running just after Christmas 2015

I assume to anyone who has read this blog (and thank you if you have read this blog!) knows that over the past couple of years my relationship with running has changed.

When I started this blog, the point was to record a journey. From fat, heavy drinking smoker to… something else. I was not sure what I would become, but I knew that I would be fitter and happier. As it turns out, I became obsessed with marathons and thanks to a combination of self-loathing, excitement, a great coach, an extremely understanding partner (my girlfriend then wife) and work that I really didn’t care about as much as I should have, I was able to train hard and run a 2:37:07 marathon.

Along the way, I discovered my purpose – to be part of a business that makes a difference. Freestak. And I also co-founded Like the Wind magazine with my (by then) wife, Julie.

The amount of road running has been disproportionate to my increasing and age the increase in the growth of Freestak and Like the Wind.

That has been a difficult transition, but maybe, during 2015, I have managed to rationalise it. I now realise that the fast marathons were something that I really enjoyed pursuing. I did my best in the circumstances and I am proud of myself. But I can’t – could never – just keep running in that way forever. Now I have other things in my life that take priority.

Running will always be a huge part of my life, just not everything.

So here are a few things that I am going to have a crack at in 2016:

  • The Ultra Tour du Monte Rosa – Lizzy Hawker’s stage / ultra trail race (not decided whether I will have a go at the Ultra yet, but that is probably the race I would like to do)
  • Regular gym sessions at the local gym I joined last year. So far I have managed at least 4 sessions per week for the last 3 months. There is more to come
  • Going climbing at least once a month (looking for climbing partners if anyone is interested)
  • Get out cycling
  • Sleep more
  • Drink less alcohol – I don’t drink very much now, but I would like to get close to zero
  • Blog more… at least to keep myself honest

On reflection, 2015 was actually not a great year. There was quite a lot of personal stress and the business was very, very hard work. But actually having a few days off and using the end of a 365 day period as a marker upon which to reflect a little, means that I am feeling much more positive about the next year. Hope you are too.

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