Rebecca Mackay

Rebecca Runs: Inconsistent, half-arsed, and OVER IT! But it’s on Sunday…

I’m back, but it’s not good.

I have concluded that running brings nothing but pain, be it physical (my calves), mental (I don’t want to run) or social (public humiliation).

I actually ran the Toi’s a couple of weekends ago. 18 long, painful kilometres in the drizzle. And what did I get for it? What do you think? Three hours of my life I’ll never get back and a sore body for days. Oh, and a blister.

I’ll tell you what I didn’t get. A thigh gap. Yes. A thigh gap. I mean, what does it take to get one of those?  And no, Bex from Transport, it’s not about chafing (I do appreciate you finding me cream for that as a consequence of our conversations about running and thigh gaps, but you missed the point entirely). Don’t get me wrong. The scales said I’d lost 2kgs at first, but then I rehydrated and it turned out that was a load of BS.

Running is about outcomes. It’s about doing the mahi and getting the gap. Yes, my running is reluctant, inconsistent and half-arsed. But regardless, I’ve run up and down these tracks and roads for months. It’s true. People have actually seen me.

But to what end?


I have no idea. I just don’t know what I’m doing with this running business. I mean it just feels like an insidious trap.

In the first place, Julie from Events lured me into this ridiculous and humiliating endeavour. Then there was Coach Ray with his relentless harassment (training programmes) and enthusiasm. They knew a chump when they saw one.

Then there’s the running itself. It’s a trap. An obesity trap as it turns out. Like you run and use all your energy. Which makes you feel hungry. So you eat twice as much Burger King (and then write off the week of healthy eating and start your diet – I mean lifestyle – back again on Monday because Mondays are when you start things, but there’s been 13 Mondays since I started!). So there’s no results on that front. In fact I’ve put on 5kg since I started this. AND DON’T YOU DARE SAY IT’S MUSCLE. Nobody is intimidated by my muscles! And those muscles do jack all for my running! I’m still slow. Like a sloth. Slow uphill. Slow downhill. Slow on the straight.

And yeah, maybe I’ve got some marginal gains in my fitness out of it, and maybe running is even becoming a bit habitual for me. So what. Like I said, I’m not fast and I don’t have a thigh gap. And don’t harp on about health benefits, Coach Ray or anyone! We all know fitness means nothing when you trip over a root, impale yourself on a stick and bleed out alone in a forest.

Rebecca MackayAnd just now – I kid you not – I literally made a very poor lifetime-first decision to dye my hair pink. It was a mistake.

How did it come to this?

I’ll tell you how. I became a runner. That’s the only thing I’ve changed in my life. Everything else is the same.

Me – slothful, gluttonous, and unmotivated me dared to defy the traditional requirements of a slim and athletic physique to be a runner, and became a runner. I became empowered by the practice, emboldened. I felt more youthful (be it I felt youthful when I wasn’t running. When I was, I felt like a lumbering geriatric elephant). I felt like I could do other outrageous things. I thought I might finally get that summer body I’ve been talking about for 17 years. I thought I could have pink hair.

I was wrong. I’m an imposter in this running game and indeed all of life (just let me be dramatic for a moment please!). And now I have to do the bloody Toi’s Challenge on Sunday. With pink hair.

– Rebecca Mackay

Rebecca will be writing weekly as she continues her journey to achieving her goal of completing the 18km Tois Challenge. Check in next Tuesday for her next article.

Read Rebecca’s last article here:

Rebecca Run’s: Great Runs in Waikato, Coromandel and BoP

And all her previous articles are stored here:

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