Today I was due to run with my mate Steve Naylor as a goodbye before he heads off to Australia and New Zealand for 3 months. Unfortunately, picking up a niggle this week put paid to that.
We still had a good catch up last night, reflecting on the last five years – his first five years as a serious runner – and his achievements. He leaves Oxfordshire with multiple county championships to his name.
He’s not planning any “competitive” running while Down Under but I’ve tried to convince him to give a few parkruns a shot. As a 15-minute 5k-er it would be awesome for him to pick up a 1st finish overseas.
On his return, he’s picking up real life down in Chichester where he’ll be working, probably his dream job, in the i-Run running shop. He’ll have some new people to test himself against too.
I’m hoping he’ll also consider upping his race distance to half marathon. Before he found running he did the Great North Run in a stupid quick time (I think he was sub 1:20?) without even training seriously. To be honest, even now, he gets great results from dramatically less miles than most people his standard. Even at 35 years old!
Bon voyage Steve! I look forward to hearing about your adventures down under and looking forward to the next chapter of your running career when you’re back.