When I was in Kefalonia, I found out about a local run that was being organized while I was there. I was very enthusiastic about the whole thing, so my parents and my friend couldn’t refuse letting me run it. It was a 7km run between two villages up in the mountains. I was (and still am) preparing for a 10km run in September, so I was regularly running 7km run for a while, but never as a race.
After I got my number and warmed up a bit, I sat there with the rest of the runners waiting for the race to begin. It is these moments that I cherish the most and what keeps me coming back to run more races.
The other thing that I love most about these races is that it’s so much easier to open up, talk to people you’ve never met before, smile and encourage them, but also get motivated from them. These are the moments that I think about when I run alone. This time it was a guy I met at the fourth kilometer. He was ready to quit. I cannot blame him. It was 32 degrees and the sun was still burning, even though it was 7 in the afternoon. I smiled and asked him to run with me. To my surprise, he did. For two kilometers. Then he decided to walk and I picked up a faster pace. I finished alone at 45’31”. Not that anyone cares.
After the race, some ladies from the village had prepared food and sweets, so that we could get our energy back. To everyone’s surprise, I came third in my age group and got a medal. My parents were so proud. Few years ago, nobody would believe I could run 7km, let alone get a medal. Turns out, everything is possible..