I picked up a football injury in my late 20’s and physically became a slob. However, shift work kept me very active. I got my first day job in 1985 and the weight piled on. Eventually, I was persuaded to join the group of lunchtime runners. My first run lasted about 15 minutes when exhaustion and blistered feet, through running in factory boots, overcame my enthusiasm. A quick visit to Ron Hill’s running shop in Hyde gave me good advice and a decent pair of running shoes. For the next 12 years, I averaged about 10 miles/week, including three work related annual races of between 5-7 miles. I quickly discovered running cleared the head of all the work clutter picked up in the morning and solved many of the challenges in the afternoon (whilst the lunchtime drinkers dozed).
The move to Congleton in August 1998 brought me in contact with a Congleton Harrier who persuaded me to join the Cloud Run Boxing Day 1998, signing up in 1999. I am eternally grateful to the Sunday morning runners for their patience and support of a new and very slow runner. This group included many top runners who gave up time away from serious training to mentor new members, many of whom are good friends to this day.
The routes from Congleton Leisure centre were innumerable and quickly built up my knowledge of the local area. My first recorded Harriers race was Cloud 9 in 2000 quickly followed by the Wilmslow half. The rest is history, although my highlight was the London Marathon when I was 60 and only made possible through motivation and training help from Harriers.
Joining a running club will bring you fitness, better health, a feeling of wellbeing and contact with many good and supportive people.