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RUNNING TO LEARN WHAT’S ON YOUR IPOD?


This month’s music loving runner is…


Scott Jenkins, part of a trio that recently completed a 2,000-mile charity run across America in just 74 days. He was averaging 35 miles a day, and the run included a climb up a 3,000ft mountain. When Scott isn’t running for charity, he works as a GP Exercise Referral Personal Trainer – www.absolutetraining.co.uk.


■ Signal Fire - Snow Patrol This helped me up a 3,000ft mountain in Pennsylvania!


■ The Pretender - Foo Fighters Another rock track that gets the adrenalin flowing and makes you want run hard and fast!


■ Gettin Over - David Guetta An uplifting dance beat that will get the legs pumping. It gave me an energy boost on the run.


■ Iris - Goo Goo Dolls An emotional song that’s always good to listen too when you’re finishing off in a cool down.


■ Enter Sandman – Metallica It’s an awesome rock track with guitar riffs that make you want to run until you drop.


BEST OF THE REST


■ Commander – Kelly Rowland


■ Club Can’t Handle Me – Flo-rida


■ 99 Problems – Jay-Z


■ Like A G6 Remix – Far East Movement ft 50 cent


■ Everywhere I Go – Hollywood Undead ■ Rock Show – Blink 182


■ One – Swedish House Mafia


■ I’m Still Standing – Elton John


■ Not Afraid – Eminem


■ Come Undone – Robbie Williams ■ Thunderstruck – ACDC ■ Rollin By – Limp Bizkit ■ Traffic – Stereophonics


■ In The Air Tonight – Phil Collins


■ When You Were Young – The Killers


Julia Armstrong is a former international marathon runner, and RF’s roving reporter. Her podcasts can be listened to weekly on www.runningfreemag.co.uk and you can read her daily blog at www.runningtolearn.com


T


his month I stood on the start line of a half marathon but unusually for me I wasn’t taking part in the race (but running an informal race to the 10k point). You can read about that on page 34. But as I


stood waiting, I was still aware of an incredible energy all around me, full of anticipation, excitement and possibility. Racing asks that we go beyond; that we seek to find out what is within us. It asks us to dare to dream and then to set off to find out if the dream is possible. In achieving goals we discover that we are more than we thought, but we find this too in dealing with disappointment and coming back for more. Physically, mentally, we access our emotional strength and then, if we also tap into the infinite, we will find that anything is possible. When we’re racing, we face ourselves. Once the start gun has gone,


we are alone and it is now all up to us to open up and release what is within. There is no one to blame and only you know deep down whether you gave your all or if you left anything just in case. Letting everything out can feel risky – what if you go for it and then find you come up short? Yet life is about giving your all, being all you can be, fulfilling your potential. Racing offers a powerful arena to see who you are and what you are made of. Where you are weak and where you are strong, where you hold back and where you are brave. The secret is not to be afraid to face yourself. Racing is the ultimate meditation. It is possible to be completely with yourself and stay in yourself with every step you run. If you can do this then you are approaching the zen of running, becoming running and letting the running take you where it will. Running fast, in the way a race demands, means that you can be at


your still point, completely present to the moment and truly understand that the moment is all you have. You will approach finding peace within the running step. The goals of time over distance will cease to have a negative hold, and instead the times will come from the inside out. To stay in the present when you race and to


“Racing off ers a powerful


make sure you keep your heart open and your confidence high, try saying a mantra as you run, choose something that works for you. Easy, light, smooth, fast from Born to Run by Chris McDougall epitomises what he is teaching throughout the book about how to run in the step and it is a mantra that works for me. It also stops any erroneous thoughts sabotaging the race. Repetition can still the mind and if the words are resonant for you, they can give you power, or rather allow you to release the power within you. It is important to relax, so if you feel any part of you tightening up,


arena to see who you are and what you are”


relax and breathe into it and keep flowing forward as you release, resist negative thoughts, reassure yourself that you are doing well and that all is well. Always remember that running faster does not make you a better person nor running slower a lesser person, you are just you, doing your best living your life, learning how to win your own race.


44 ■ RUNNING FREE


RUNNERS


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