Can any sport bring as much inter-generational joy as running? I’m going to lay my cards on the table, alongside my unashamed bias and say: “no, of course there isn’t!”
My five-year-old twins took part in a one mile fun run at the weekend, organised by my local club. My little girl wanted to run with her grandad…or Grandee…as he is better known.
While my boy had the confidence to run his own race and I couldn’t help but feel a pang of pride that my competitive genes had survived into another generation.
It may have been a modest distance, but I loved supporting my children and father-in-law at different sections of the course.
There was something really heart-warming over my young son’s effervescence and enthusiasm as he tackled the muddy course. Equally so seeing my daughter and her grandad running hand in hand, smiling every step of the way – right to the end.
At the finish, they all sported rosy cheeks and talked with an almost manic happiness that runners often do at the race conclusion. I’m exactly the same everytime I take part in any organised race. But of course, they were not alone.
It is the shared experience that makes running such an inclusive sport across the generations. Of course, there are special moments to be had across all sports for families. But rarely can the experience be shared so equally.
There were other families running together on Sunday sharing the simple joy of running together. There were others who were running in the 10 mile race later on who began the day by supporting their children in the fun run, all sharing the passion for running.
It must run in the family.