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posted 3 Apr 2012, 03:45 by I.D. Est   [ updated 3 Apr 2012, 03:46 ]
All the familiar sites flew by at fast forward. Parliament Hill, the lakes, the arched wooden bridge, the path snaking around the big tree and the grassy hills.

I was doing something I had never done before. I was running on the Heath.


I read somewhere that the Heath is the home of at least 16 different kinds of sports. Not sure if I can name that many sport related activities, I have often suspected the athletic part of my brain to be inactive.  


However, last Saturday I was running on the Heath, actually running.


Not reading a book, not sipping tea and people watching, not having a picnic, not strolling along the gravel path clutching a croissant or petting all the cute dogs.  All of this had been replaced by running shoes, a tank top and a pair of shorts that can only be described as ridiculous.  


What was the reason behind this transformation, this mutation in personality and behaviour?






First of all, a few weeks back a friend sent me a text and asked if I wanted to run a 10K race with her. I love challenges, so I said yes right away. If you think about things for too long, you can end up talking yourself out if practically anything.  I would have talked myself out of this thing faster than a pig can blink, so a super quick response was crucial.
Secondly, this particular race is a race for life, running for cancer. Which means that this is not at all about me, I’m doing something for past, present and future cancer victims.  I can get behind that, even if it means suspending my normal Heath activities and stretching my cozy comfort zone.
Thirdly, during the race I get to wear pink.

All great reasons, wouldn’t you agree?


My friend and I met up outside the tube station and walked towards the Heath. I’m glad we chose the Heath as our training grounds. It’s just so gorgeous, so vast. However, in order not to get lost, we kept ourselves close to the area of the Heath that borders Belsize Park and Hampstead Village. That is the area I’m most familiar with, and this was not the day to end up in the middle of nowhere, out of breath, disoriented, and dehydrated

Don’t tell anyone, but I actually had a good time. I noticed a lot of other runners, a group of people that had never before entered my radar. They ran with such ease, elegance and assurance. Something to strive for.


After an hour of running, speed walking, jogging and stretching, we ended up at one of the couches at the Wells Tavern. Water! Food! Nothing had ever tasted better. Wells Tavern have a great cocktail menu, it would be a small crime to leave without ordering at least one. Besides, we felt like celebrating that we had survived this ordeal.


I’ll be back next weekend, in running shoes and all. Cheers!