The Run Club Changed My Life

@kayleeperkinsphotography

@kayleeperkinsphotography

Running. I’ve never been fond of it and it is my least favourite form of cardio. It is hard on the body and quite intimidating to me. 

This past May, I became aware of the HIH Run Club and offered to lend a hand. 

At the first Run Club, I took attendance and waited for the runners to complete their 5km run. Once Chloe Wilde and the rest of the participants returned from their run, Chloe asked me why I hadn’t run with them. I just shrugged and told her that I was considering running the following week. She told me she couldn’t wait.

The next week, I laced up my running shoes and prepared myself to run. As I had never run before, 5km seemed impossible. I was extremely nervous and worried that my asthma would affect my running. I was afraid that I would be forced to stop to take my puffer in public. This would have been embarrassing.

The first part of the run was very challenging, but I kept pushing myself and refused to give up. I was running much faster than I should have been because I didn’t want to fall behind the others. 

Once I reached the halfway point, my calves tighten up. There must have been a look of panic on my face because Chloe slowed down to see if I was okay. I reassured her that I was fine and encouraged her to catch up with the rest of the group. Instead, Chloe linked arms with me and told me we were going to do this together. 

Although I continued to struggle throughout the remainder of the 5km, I finished the run. It had been physically demanding, but I knew then that I had the ability to do it and that Chloe and the rest of the members believed in me.

Thanks to my friends who helped me stretch out, it only took a few days for my calves to recover and loosen up. 

@kayleeperkinsphotography

@kayleeperkinsphotography

The following week, I spoke to Chloe about mapping out alternate routes to fit my running ability. 

From then on, Chloe provided me with a 3km route, which I successfully completed each week. In between each run club, I began going for runs on my own to build up my endurance. 

By the end of the summer, I had increased my distance to 4km and even ran 4.5km during the last Run Club. 

This is a huge accomplishment for me. I would never have dreamt of being able to run 2km, let alone 4km, without passing out. 

I owe my success to the other runners and especially to Chloe, who encouraged me throughout the sessions to persevere. They believed in my ability and continuously supported and motivated me and each other. The amount of positivity was incredible.

Thank you to all the members of the HIH Run Club. I can’t tell you how much my life has changed in 10 weeks. I can now say I enjoy running and I am unbelievably happy about it.

@kayleeperkinsphotography

@kayleeperkinsphotography