Discovering a love of running

Having returned from my adventures in Ireland a bit worse for wear, I am once again throwing myself into the schedule of Great North Run training.

Saturday, 26th March 2016, 10:30 am

It can be daunting thinking about the end goal so I hope to be able to break it down into manageable chunks along the way.

I want to be able to say I have “run” the Great North Run for the Alzheimer’s Society, but as the weeks start ticking by at an alarming rate I’m beginning to wonder if this is an unrealistic dream.

I can but try, however, and having downloaded the GNR training guide I am taking the advice, aiming to run three times a week. On the face of it this seems a huge time commitment, particularly as this is in addition to other forms of exercise I do, but, for now, the suggested run times are still short and should be easy to fit into a normal week.

I was surprised to discover my love of running – it certainly didn’t make itself known during my school days when I considered cross-country runs a type of torture. However, as an adult with a sedentary indoor job, I have been converted to the benefits of running.

I love being able to get outdoors with no specialist equipment and just go. I think we are particularly lucky living in such a beautiful area – you do not need to run far to find stunning views, which provide a welcome distraction from the job in hand.

It is often hard to find the motivation to go running at the end of a long day, but I try to remind myself I always feel better for heading out into the fresh air.

I am making the most of the longer days, revisiting some of the early routes I used to train towards 5K a couple of years ago. These have the advantage of being familiar, and more to the point, nice and flat. As training continues I will need to work on hill and speed training, but for now my aim is simply to get my runners on and get out there.

This week I ventured up Castle Terrace, enjoying the newly surfaced pavement, and on to Old Paxton Road, where the views down the valley always put a spring in my step. I have a number of other favourite routes starting in Berwick, in particular crossing the Old Bridge heading for Spittal, or out along the New Road.

I would welcome suggestions for alternative routes, and would be delighted if anyone fancies joining me. I’m finding I lack motivation on a Wednesday night so if anyone is free from 5pm get in touch via the Advertiser and help me along the way.

I hope you will check next week to see where my running shoes take me next, and in the meantime you can show your support by donating online at