A first half-marathon for our athletes

Posted by Mellieha AC 15th February 2015 0 Comment 1262 views

The big day is looming.  It is exciting any seasoned athlete, any seasoned runner.  So imagine those doing it for the first time.  As the American poet Emily Dickinson once said, whenever a thing is done for the first time, it releases a little demon.  At the time then it’s safe to say, that those lining up with twenty-one kilometres ahead of them for the first time are possessed by the thought of the race.  Most of us have been there before, and know the feeling.

Happily enough, within our club there is a nice number who are going through all this.  Some have migrated from other sports, and found a haven in running, while others migrated from their couches.   On the day, they will be standing next to each other, sporting the same kit, with the same road ahead of them.

Their personal stories for getting here are different though.  While, it is usually assumed that parents are the ones who set example for their children, sometimes it’s the other way round.  “I noted that every so often the children’s coach at the club’s nursery takes the kids out for a 2k road run and I wanted to run alongside. On my first run with the kids I noticed that I was not in shape, I thus joined MAC Beginners in April 2014.  The half-marathon then followed naturally.”

Others still reminisce being at the finishing line waiting for their parents when they were still kids.  “I want to run in my dad’s footprints of 1986.”  Our quote of ‘If you can walk, you can run” and progression through our nursery made her believe in herself, and will make her family proud of herself, as she was of her dad back all those years ago.

For others, getting here is just unexpected.  But sometimes the best rides are the unplanned ones.  “I never thought I would be running in the first place since I am not (was not!) a sports person.  I started from the very basics at the Beginners Class and it changed all my perception.  I push my limits and I always surprise myself.”  A similar story was, “I have become disciplined and I try not to miss any training session.  I feel fitter and healthier, and through the club I made new friends.”

Those coming from a background of sports were still amazed how in such an individual sport, they found a teamwork of athletes encouraging each other.  Maybe at times they thought running as boring, but a couple of sessions and races later they now feel differently.  It was not just a haven that they found in our running club, but a new springboard to test their limits and enjoy the free endorphins that sport can give.

On the 22nd day of February, Mellieha AC’s contingent will be an embodiment of Pierre de Coubertin’s quote, “For each individual, sport is a possible source for inner improvement.”

Hopefully, our running through the roads will entice more people to run in our footprints and let them experience what our first-timers are going through right now in a year’s time.

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