Why do I spend a few hours each week blogging and writing about my training and running? Does anyone actually care? Does it really matter? I initially started my blog to raise awareness of my London Marathon training in 2015, and three years on I am still going strong...
One of the main reasons I keep a running blog is because I value the reflection it gives me. If I can inspire, entertain, help, or give comfort to people along the way that's also great of course! But on a personal level, writing a blog makes me accountable for what I do, and also makes me think about what I'm doing. This is not for motivational purposes as such - I don't need forcing to run or train! - but more in an attempt to stop myself doing too much and to ensure what I do continues to make me happy. Those that may have read any of my weekly run reports may have spotted I am very quick to acknowledge when I am perhaps being a bit crazy and doing rather a lot, if it wasn’t for this active reflection I know I would struggle to admit or act on it.
I enjoy looking back on past blogs too; rereading my race accounts helps fire up those treasured memories, and glancing back over my training weeks can help remind me of the progress I have made and also what I can possibly work towards achieving. I use a paper diary to log the basic information after each run, distance, pace, how I briefly felt etc. but I enjoy my online blog version for going into a bit more detail and adding a personal touch which I hope others can appreciate. This is usually accompanied by a selection of running related photos from the week, which themselves can often help make running even more interesting. Sometimes I will set out for a run and realise I have not taken any photos that week which could be used on my blog. I then set myself the challenge of taking a good selfie or finding that perfect photo which, when uploaded to my blog, would encapsulate that training week.
I remember one Easter Sunday in particular spending a good hour and a half on my long run trying to spot the perfect location to take a selfie with a set of daffodils! I also apologise to my long suffering run buddy who frequently gets roped into a selfie or two (see attached image of our latest - shockingly poor - attempt at taking a mid run photo!)
There are negatives for publishing a blog so publicly and shouting about your goals. If things do not go to plan then you feel you have to also shout about that. One of the hardest things to do after my experience at the Manchester Marathon in 2016 was to send out that post run social media status. To sum up that race in a few Twitter characters was impossible, and it was not until I was able to publish my race review blog I felt I could fully explain the race and also acknowledge all those who had helped me. I was overwhelmed by the response I had to this blog though; I try and be honest in my blog writing. I don’t paint a perfect, pretty picture all the time and am open with things I struggle with – because we all know no one’s life is perfect, let alone running!
There are lots of running blogs online now, and I don’t doubt many people think there’s no need for another one. But if you feel it is something you would benefit from then I recommend you give it a go.
Alice's Adventures In Running Land
Read about my adventures in running land...