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Meet the other communities #1
Running with Mates
Welcome to the first edition of ‘meet the other communities’!
In our pursuit of a suicide-free society, we know that community is at the core of whatever the solution is, so we want to champion other communities that people can join, or in this instance, one that people can replicate.
Part of the Running for Resilience (R4R) goal was to inspire others to take action, understanding that for us, effort, not money, is key to saving one life from suicide, as many times as possible. So, when we see other communities watering the grass around them, we love it… particularly when they cite R4R as part of their inspiration!
This particular community is called ‘Running with Mates’ (RWM) and it was set up by a fella named Michael, because, as you’ll read later, when he stopped playing sport, he missed what it gave him; exercise and community. I’ve only met Michael over video but I can clearly see that he’s caught the bug that anyone who’s involved with R4R has caught and as far as I can tell, he’s a cracker of a bloke too.
What we hope to achieve from sharing Michael’s and RWMs story is that if you’re reading this and would love to do something similar, it might give you a bit of confidence to have a crack.
We’ve never been protective of the ‘R4R’ brand, nor do we want to franchise, and maybe I’d be saying something different if these guys hadn’t set up on the other side of the country, but it truly is awesome to see someone else looking to replicate the magic that is exercising with mates, followed by a chat and a cool drink.
So without further ado, let’s meet our first community, ‘Running with Mates’.
What is Running with Mates?
Running with mates is a group that runs 5km and then shares a few beers every Tuesday at 6pm. We start and finish at the front of a pub and the location changes every week.
I was putting in massive weeks with work and family and I wasn't filling up my own cup. For me the ability to be active and competitive is incredibly rewarding and then to be able to celebrate as part of a team is euphoric. There wasn't anything in place amongst my social circles so I thought why not start something because if I was feeling like this I am sure there must be at least one or 2 others.
Where are you?
Perth, Western Australia
How did you guys get started?
We got started in February. I sent a message out to some good mates to see if anyone wanted to go for a run. Copy of text below:
"G'day gents, we have plenty in common, however the thing that binds us all together is the love of Rugby and camaraderie with mates. Given none of us are still playing I want to organise a Tuesday afternoon run club. It is simply a way of staying active with mates and then finishing off with a pint (of 2) at a local watering hole. Ideally we could change the finishing point each week to check out a different establishment."
Where did you hold the first one?
The first one was at the Camfield next to Optus Stadium
How many have done?
How many people did you start with?
4 runners at the inaugural run
What’s your connection to R4R?
David Bennett who is a dear friend and an absolute gentleman who was running with R4R.
All hail the king of the north, Sir David Bennett.
Why did you decide to start RWM?
Benno was running at R4R and I was completely absorbed by the idea and selfishly wished I was living in Canberra to join in. Life can feel so busy and we battle our way through week after week only to
Why do you keep doing it?
To be truly honest it is selfish. The positive endorphins from the first run was something I hadn't experienced since stopping rugby 2 years earlier. Now that it is set in my calendar every week and we get a minimum of 5 mates (new and old) down I am getting what I need and I can see everyone else is as well. It is only since watching R4R more closely have I realised that maybe there is more than just 1 or 2 others that were feeling like me and we could actually grow this to help more people
Mate, an absolute pleasure. And I hope someone out there who’s on the fence of setting up their own group to exercise with has been given a gentle nudge!
Just. Keep. Moving.
A gentle reminder that the gift is on tonight!
R4R will be on as normal, with the leisurely stroll and walk available to anyone that chooses to do so. Likewise, if you want to have a crack at a PB or taking out one of the categories for some Lulu merch, that avenue is available too.
It’s up to you and there’s no pressure on either front. You can stay at the Arc de Resilience and do push-ups if you want. I’ll give a spiel at the start of the run about some rules to foster fairness, mainly around the narrow bridge early on, but apart from that, hooroo!
Just. Keep. Moving.