Running with Eddie Izzard

I didn’t feel like going running this morning. I’m not sure I ever do. But somehow after the usual procrastination I ended up in my shorts and trainers and off I went.

I wanted to run longer than I’d run before but after about 20 minutes I was considering turning round, going home, pretending I didn’t really have a plan to run very far and eating toast and reading the paper – ideally under a duvet.

But I kept going.

I saw a fellow runner so I naturally stood taller and ran faster (so I was now probably going at a normal human’s walking speed). And said hi and he said hi too. And then I realised who it was. Eddie Izzard. Legend.

We chatted for 10 minutes and he was wonderful, lovely, humble and inspiring.

Naturally I quizzed him about how he did all his amazing marathons. He has run 27 marathons in 27 days – so my little trot on the South Downs Way seemed like a walk in the park – literally.

He took time to chat while I fired a million questions at him about how he did it. He said that he sets himself challenges which mean something and the only thing you needed to conquer was your mind if you wanted to achieve them.

He runs without music, so there’s no distraction and he just keeps on going. No fanfare, no glitz. Just Eddie, a pair of trainers and a mind full of determination.

He said that he sometimes ‘creates crises’ which he has to overcome and he does this with his running.

Eddie also says that he spotted a tiger (or a lion – I can’t remember I was so excited by the whole conversation) and how it was really old but could still spring into action and sprint and run and run – and we’re only animals too – so maybe if we run a lot we can do that sort of thing when we’re really old too.

I’m not one to be stunned by celebrities but I was totally inspired. I ran my longest run today thanks to Eddie and I want to run more and more and conquer my mind which always tells me I can’t go any further. When, according to Eddie, I most definitely can.

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