The run diaries

Posted on July 23, 2020


The last few months have been difficult for everyone, but in an attempt to draw a positive from a horrible situation, our team has been talking about what they’ve discovered during the lockdown. While some of us have developed a new found love of Flamin’ Hot Doritos, others have been more physical in their pursuits. 

When she’s not launching Boyzlife’s new album or working on another brilliant Bushmills campaign, Mollie can now be found doing her best Mo Farah impression on the roads and footpaths around Belfast. Here’s her story…

I’ve always hated running, for as long as I can remember, but a prominent memory from sports day in P7 was when we had to run 1500m and I had to sit down on the ground halfway through because I couldn’t breathe - not dramatic at all. Since then, I’ve always needed a bit of running with hockey throughout school and uni, but I would always try and skip the once a month sprinting session or ‘bleep tests.’ As captain of the team, this didn’t always go down well 😬.

I like the idea of running and the ‘escape’ people talk about, but any time I’ve tried to go for a run, I overthink the whole thing, glass feels like it’s cutting my throat after 0.2 kms, my limbs feel like lead and carrying my phone for music feels like I’m carrying a tonne weight. No sign of ‘escape’ for me. 

I think a reason I hate it so much is because I do have a good level of fitness, and so I should be able to run a 5k pretty effortlessly, which I couldn’t, so it put me off trying.

So, since lockdown, I decided I was going to challenge myself and try to run. I decided for my first run if I could just do 3km without stopping I would be delighted. I ended up running 6k, which I couldn’t believe. I mean it took me 45 minutes and I did hate pretty much every single second of it, but I did it. AND I did 10k the next day.

That was 15 weeks ago, and I have been doing at least 2 runs a weeks since. Some days, I can’t believe how quickly the time passes and I’ve done 8k and some days I am willing it to be over and find 3k very difficult. I should also point out I am definitely the slowest runner in the world, I won’t be winning any awards for speed or doing a 5k in sub 30 minutes ever. I really don’t mind that. 

I’ve actually learned a lot from running. 

The first thing is good trainers are vital (would recommend Asics). I haven’t had any shin splints or blisters since investing in some good trainers. Music and wireless headphones are almost as important as the trainers. The genre for me needs to be heavy house music, the type I imagine would be on repeat in Pascha, Ibiza. The ‘You can do it’ playlist on Spotify is the GOAT for this. Finally, no two runs (well for me anyway) are the same. Sometimes I really enjoy a 10km and finish it thinking I could actually have run further and, some days, 5km seems to go on forever and I hate the whole thing.

To sum up, I still don’t really like running, but I know I can physically do it now which encourages me to do it more. I don’t get the ‘escape’, I won’t be running any marathons, I don’t know how people make running look effortless and don’t get me started on people talking while running ??!?!? How?!??! I can, however, complete a run (10 km or less) and that’s enough for me ✅.