A quick introduction; my name is Erin- I’m a 26-year-old living in a little seaside town called Seaford in East Sussex. In no particular order, I like gin, running (fortunately) and buying shoes.
After asking me if I was mad/ laughing hysterically/spitting their drinks out at me, when I told my friends about this challenge they all asked where the idea came from.
The answer I gave was that I enjoy running and wanted to travel, so thought I would combine the two. Although that is true, there is a little bit more to it than that.
Until recently I was based in the beautiful city of Bath. I was 25, living in a beautiful little house overlooking endless miles of glorious countryside, I had a great job working in the local hospital and an amazing group of friends. On paper I had the perfect life, but after a few months I realised I wasn’t happy.
In hindsight it had been coming for a while. The twinkle that used to be in his eye was no longer there. The laughter was replaced with tears. Our differences became increasingly pronounced. Running allowed me to temporarily escape and provided an opportunity for me to think. I found myself running further and further away from it all.
I will always remember the night we were sat in the lounge doing our favourite things: he was watching TV, I was scrolling through my Lonely Planet travel book, dreaming about travelling around the world. I came across a photo of Times Square lit up at night. He asked why I kept looking at photos of distant places. I showed him the photo, got excited and said we should visit. His reply was short and cutting, “we can’t just go to New York”. Conversation ended. TV turned up. That was the moment I knew it wouldn’t work. I was young, had no commitments and had worked hard for the savings I had in the bank. If we couldn’t go to New York then, we were never going to. I wanted to see the world through my own eyes rather than through the television screen.
9th May 2016: (ironically the day before the a really important exam) was the day it all ended. I no longer had a happy place to live and my job contract was soon to end, with no new work lined up. I sat the exam and then did what any self-respecting, young professional would do… I phoned my mum. Through sobs I asked her two important questions: Number 1: Can I move home? Number 2: Would she go to New York with me? Like any great Mummy she answered yes and yes.
I went online and signed up to the New York marathon, because I could and I would go to New York. And why stop at New York when there are so many amazing places in the world to visit. I moved back home to Seaford and began to plan a year of adventures running my way around the world.
And I have never been happier.