In our latest #Run1000Miles ambassador piece, Lizzie Rosewell tells us about the motivation behind an epic run from Paris to London
For me the greatest joy of running is the freedom it gives me to get out and explore the world around me, whether that is finding a new local footpath, or scaling a mountain summit. Running gives me the close connection to my surroundings that comes from travelling on foot, while allowing me to cover greater distances than are possible as a walker. I am always seeking opportunities for running adventures, both in day outings or in longer trips incorporating overnight wild camps, and rarely go anywhere without taking running gear with me in the hope of finding new sights and experiences.
I have recently successfully taken on the biggest adventure of my life, running 390 miles from Paris to London via the Western Front of the First World War, the equivalent of 15 marathons in 15 days. I wanted to commemorate the centenary of the end of World War I, as well as using my love of running to raise a considerable sum of money for charity. Despite having completed some long ultramarathons, this was by far the toughest challenge I have ever undertaken. I struggled with blisters and my feet swelled badly in the heat, meaning that by the end I needed to wear trainers a whole shoe size bigger than usual. However, I found new reserves of physical and mental strength that allowed me to push on through the pain and exhaustion, and the euphoria of reaching London and finishing the challenge by running the London Marathon made it all worthwhile.
Since finishing that run I have had a few quiet weeks to rest and recover, but I am now back running again and making lots of plans for my summer running adventures. Despite living in the flatlands of East Anglia, I love running in the hills and so have planned trips to the Yorkshire Dales, Peak District and Lake District for the next few months, with a combination of solo adventures and organised races. I am excited to explore some new routes and revisit some old favourites.
One of my favourite aspects of the #Run1000Miles Facebook group is seeing the wonderful photos from everyone’s running adventures and gaining inspiration and new ideas for places to run and explore. I hope to be sharing plenty of my own photos over the next few months.