Thursday, 27 November 2014

What Target Asics 26.2 means to me

Tomorrow I will be taking my place on a Birmingham running track alongside 49 other runners as one of the lucky 50 to be selected for the final stages of Runners Worlds Asics Target 26.2 competition.

For anyone who doesn't know what its all about it a competition to select 5 lucky runners across 5 different finishing times with a prize of a training plan, training advice and support and training kit alongside entry, travel and accommodation for the Paris 2015 marathon.

Quite an awesome prize, in previous years the competition format has included a public voting process alongside the initial boot camp stage which ha earned the competition the tag of Xfactor for runners!

What does it mean to me

When I entered I never really thought I would get selected for this stage, sure I wanted to but I never thought I actually would! 

For me the prize consists of several more than desirable elements:

  • Being part of team Target 26.2
  • Attending boot camp for training, advice and meeting other like minded runners
  • Runners World and Asics freebies
  • Free entry into the 2015 Paris Marathon including accommodation and travel
But it is the money cant buy aspect of the prize that really grabs my interest and no doubt the attention of the thousands of other runners who entered the competition.

The chance to be trained by professional running coaches and to receive advice from dedicated professionals to me that is living the dream! 

Since I got into running some ten years ago I have always vaguely dreamed of becoming an elite runner. 

I recently wrote an article for RunningJunkies about it here entitled 'Do you dream of being an elite runner?'.

The article was mainly motivated by the story of Steve Way who in the last few years has transformed himself from an obese non runner to an elite runner representing England in the marathon at the recent Commonwealth games in Glasgow.

My dream to be an elite runner has been a long standing aspiration as I figure with the correct training and support I could improve my running performance significantly enough to be able to represent my country at international level at a major competition such as the Olympics or World Championships.

It is a wild dream that at the very least would require me to win the lottery to allow me to give up my day job to allow me to commit the time and resources into this plan.

The Target 26.2 competition is however one way of achieving my elite runner aspiration on a smaller scale. 

I would love to be selected in the final 5 and to have an awesome few months training and preparing for the 2015 Paris marathon with the support and guidance of the Runners World coaches behind me. 

I realise all the other 49 runners all hold similar aspirations and I am sure we are all equally deserving of the prize and will all be giving of our all to try and win this once in a lifetime opportunity.

All I want to do is give of my bets at boot camp and the rest is up to the Runners World judges, they know who they are looking for and I think it is then a case if I fit that profile in terms of my running ability, personality and having the right 'look' they are after. What every the criteria for selection I will have to just give it a go and see what happens!

Good luck to all my fellow boot campers and I look forward to meeting you all and experiencing what I am sure will be a special day.