Near the end of 2016 I was asked a question: “Misty, what does trail running mean to you? – quite a tough question to answer without giving it some serious thought and I cannot really remember what I blabbed on about at the time. However, going into 2017 my answer is this: There is a song by P.O.D called Alive which has the following lyrics “I feel so alive, for the very first time, I can’t deny you”. This is what running means to me.
Running trail, both in the moment as well as in the journey of training for and completing big races, is the one place that I find myself unable to deny God and the intentional role he plays in preparing me for a life of purpose. Being the skeptic that I am, I can admit that there are few other areas in life where I experience such clarity and confidence in who God says He is and who He says I am. The purpose of this blog is to capture what I mean by this and to share the incredible life lessons I have learned and will continue to learn in the new year.
A little more about me
I am 32 years old and am an Occupational Therapist working off-site for a Non-Profit Company based in Johannesburg called Malamulele Onward. I have spent the past eight years living near Grahamstown, spoilt with at least 70km of gorgeous single track at my door step as well as brilliant mountains near by such as the Amatola Mountains. In March 2017 I’ll be moving to the Underberg area that will offer new trails to explore and some extreme adventures no doubt. I have always loved running, yet it was only in 2011 that I had my first taste of trail and I have not looked back. I really enjoy ultra trail running and have completed a few decent races, yet am still very inexperienced. However bordering on obsessed, I cannot help but want to push myself by taking on bigger challenges each year.
At the end of 2014 after completing my first Salomon Skyrun, I set myself the goal of running my first 100 miler and decided that the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc 2016 in the Alps was going to be it. Since then a two year journey of ups and downs and life-changing lessons has unfolded that will change the way I do life forever. After an incredible UTMB in 2016, I have chosen to raise the bar and take on the Munga Trail in 2017 and cannot wait to have to dig deeper than ever before.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a big dreamer and that to me no dream is worth having if not followed on by the ‘doing’. In my journey, the ‘doing’ is how God breaks and builds my character in preparation for me fulfilling those dreams that scare me.