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Home >> Blog >> Guest Blogger >> Inspirational Runner: Mark Anley

Inspirational Runner: Mark Anley

  • Half Marathon
  • Training

I was always a critic in terms of runners and always thought that running was a boring, pointless sport.

Looking at runners while driving by them I'd often think, “why would anyone 'run for fun'?”

I've never done sports. I've always been the chubby boy in the friends group who was picked last. I've always been quite unfit, eating incorrectly and smoking. Running couldn’t possibly be for someone like me...?

Well...to my suprise....

My wife and I started walking our dogs 3/4 kms every morning for months. I then started taking them on my own and realised that I could jog that same route and finish the walk a bit quicker.

At about the same time the company I work for had a motivational speaker who came to talk to us - Braam Malherbe. I couldn’t resist and went and bought his book. It was amazing how he described the joy he got out of running.

So... I then took the dogs for a brisk jog in the morning and after that I went on my own and jogged the route again. AMAZINGLY I started discovering I could run 3kms without stopping to rest!

I bought some running shoes and thought, 'what the heck', can’t hurt trying... I worked my way up to 5kms runs, bought a GPS watch and within a couple of months I ran my first ever race: A 10km run and I didn’t finish last!

I still have my first medal and since then have done a few 5kms races, a few 10kms, a 15km and last year I did my first Two Oceans Half Marathon! I finished before the cut-off, got my medal and loved every minute of it.

I now do 2 or 3 training runs every week, anything from 8kms to 12kms runs at 5am in the morning while the rest of the world is only waking up.

I feel amazing. I've been lucky enough to have found something I can be so passionate about, and that truly gives me the kind of joy that only a fellow runner would understand.

It’s a sense of achievement for myself, just running quietly feels like I cheer myself on... and when I get home after a morning run, have a good stretch and a cup of coffee and I'm buzzing and ready to take on the day.

Running is a relationship with your inner power... you just have to let it out.