I’m gonna level with you:
If you’ve gotten anything of value out of anything I’ve done over the past decade (my books, newsletters, programs – all of it!) there’s a high chance that Grace McBride has had her hands all over it.
She’s my secret weapon, my right hand woman, and she’s my guest on today’s episode of the podcast!
I asked Grace to come on the show because, like many women, she never thought she could run.
But you know what? Something magical happened. She did my program Run with Turia …. and everything changed.
I can’t wait for you to hear what she learned about running, why anyone can do it, and how it changed her whole perspective on life.
And look, even if you’re not ready to run, this conversation is gonna light you up and totally inspire you.
And, if you’re not a podcast listener, well I’ve got you covered.
I asked Grace to also write about what she’s learned from her running journey so far.
She obliged (because she’s nice like that).
Here’s her story:
When Turia first started talking about creating a running program, I said “Cool! Love that, but I won’t be doing it”.
See, I’d already tried Couch to 5k, other online running programs and even private running coaching. NOTHING had stuck. After years of trying, I’d resigned myself to the belief that I just wasn’t a “runner”.
But of course, Turia is nothing if not convincing, and she soon roped me in as the official guinea pig for the 5km program.
Now, I’m not the smallest person. I’m 5’10, am what some would call “rubenesque”, and when I started the 5km program, I was the heaviest I’d ever been in my life. I was worried that I was simply too big to run.
And I was terrified! What if people saw me? Wouldn’t it be so mortifying if they saw me struggling on the street?
So, when I set out on that first run, I found a quiet bush track, and I started in the dark.
I’ll say that again: I ran on a bush track IN THE DARK.
Yes, it was exactly like the opening scene of a Law and Order SVU episode, I’m glad you agree.
Now, that first run in the program is 10 minutes. That’s a bloody LIFETIME for someone who doesn’t run.
All week I’d been calling Turia, arguing with her that it was too long, that we should make it five minutes, that I JUST COULD NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, ACTUALLY DO THIS.
But as I stood there on the bush track, the day slowly unfurling around me, I decided to just have a go.
I set a timer to beep every minute for ten minutes, and following Turia’s advice I started shuffling slowly along the track.
With sticks and dry leaves crunching underfoot, I made it to the first beep, and then the second. And soon I was halfway done, and then, as I hopped unsteadily over a fallen log, I made it. Ten minutes.
I’d run for ten whole minutes. Without stopping.
And somehow, shuffling very slowly, I kept going. Through all ten weeks of the program. I made it to 5km. Signed up for another program. Got to 10kms. Signed up for a third round of the program and then decided to throw not just caution, but my entire life, into the wind and sign up for a 25km trail run.
In the desert.
No, I don’t know why either.
And that’s how I found myself, 15 months after my first ten minute run, standing in the sand on Arrernte country in the Northern Territory with 180 other people. About to tackle 25 kilometers of Australia’s toughest terrain.
What have I learnt from this year and a half journey learning to run?
- That anyone can be a runner. Your body shape, weight and height have NOTHING to do with it.
- That no one gives a shit what you look like when you run. Wear the crop top and bike shorts.
- That the boost you get from a mental and physical challenge like running will affect you in EVERY AREA of your life. Hard things feel more doable. You’ll stop thinking “Why did I sign up for this?” and start thinking “What’s next?”
- That running isn’t actually running. You don’t need to sprint. Slow shuffling is still running.
- That the promise of coffee can get you through most hard things. Have a treat planned for immediately after your run – something that will pull you through the tough moments.
- That building resilience doesn’t look anything like it does in the movies. There’s no montage scene set to inspiring music. Sometimes training just sucks, and it hurts and you’ve just gotta show up anyway.
- That doing a program imperfectly is still doing it. You don’t have to tick off every training session perfectly.
- That running is boring. There I said it. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing. I’ve met more cool people, learnt more about myself and gained more confidence from this experience than I ever could have imagined.
- That it’s fun to be a smug bitch. And there’s nothing that feels more smug than getting a coffee at 6am after a run!
- That if there’s even the smallest little voice in your head or your heart saying “maybe I could run too” – you should listen to it. Run. It might just change your life too.
And yes, I crossed the finish line of that 25km run.
And I’m not stopping any time soon.
I am a runner now.
See why I love her?
If you want to listen to our chat, you can do so right here.
And if you want to join us inside Run, this is your time to shine!
The doors close this week.