Welcome to the 61st edition of the ‘Meet the R4R Runners’, where we get to meet Monique. Monique has been running with us for quite some time and staked her claim in last year’s R4R gift, taking out one of the titles!
She always has a smile on her face and is always willing to laugh. She’s also very forgiving after we took almost a year to get her one of the Lulu-lemon R4R shirts she won in the lucky draw a while back.
We’re very lucky to have Monique as part of our community, so without further ado, let’s meet her!
What is your name?
Where are you from?
NSW originally. I also spent some time in Melbourne en route to Canberra.
What's your favourite thing about Canberra? (apart from R4R obviously)
Apart from R4R... being surrounded by nature and that most things are accessible in under a 20min drive.
How did you hear about R4R and when did you first attend?
I first attended back in 2020, pre-lock down, after moving up from Melbourne. As a keen runner and Kingston resident at the time, I joined a morning session and then became hooked on Wednesday night meets.
What's your favourite thing about R4R?
Simply put, R4R had a substantial impact on kick-starting and creating my Canberra community when I arrived in 2020. It provided the opportunity to share my enjoyment for running with others, which resulted in core friendships I otherwise wouldn't have made - especially during a time when the lockdown was looming.
What would you like to see R4R do?
City2Surf has to become a tradition (waking up 4 am has never been so worth it).
In addition to the R4R Gift, perhaps to hold an annual official R4R running race? It could be an opportunity to extend R4R's reach and message (World Suicide Prevention Day 10 September?), and might also give people the opportunity to donate (race entry?).
What's the longest you've ever run?
I certainly enjoy the 10 - 15km range, but the longest I've run was 25km in the Sri Chimnoy 100km relay.
Are you planning on taking part in any races or events soon or are there any just gone?
Hopefully I'll be setting a new 'longest' run benchmark after the Canberra Marathon next month... Otherwise, I look forward to giving the concrete a break and to trying some new trail races. Some old favourites have been UTA in Katoomba and Stromlo. Surprises me each year how many new events crop up.
Now that you’ve brought it up…
Canberra Running Festival
Join us for the Canberra Times Running Festival on April 16, 2023! This event has something for everyone, whether you want to run a marathon, half marathon, 10K, 5K, or the 2K kids run. If you don’t have a team already, we invite you to sign up for the ‘Running for Resilience’ team and celebrate together after the race, at either the Jetty or the Dock (we’ll confirm closer to the date).
Back to the important stuff!
Which three people (alive or dead) would you like to run 6km with?
1. Barack Obama - Easy choice. Very inspired in the life of this charismatic, people focused President. After listening to his Audible books (mostly while out running), it somehow feels I've already run with him!
2. Serena Williams - I'm intrigued to hear the range of struggles and triumphs she faced on her path to becoming one of the most successful and influential sportswomen.
3. Charlie - my youngest little brother based in Melbourne, any opportunity to catch up with him before he grows up too much.
What does resilience mean to you?
I think resilience is our response to challenges in life, and that the the opportunity to build resilience can only come from experiencing and responding to what we define as a "challenges" at a certain point of time.
When you look back on the hardest moment/s in your life, is there anything you wish you could have told yourself?
Looking back today, I am grateful to say that I am yet to experience a defining moment of hardship. That being said, I am aware that it's inevitable that there will be a time when I have to confront a intensely difficult hardship.
Although I think it's near impossible to prepare for the unpreparable, I think during times of personal hardship, support through connections with others would be crucial. Perhaps connections through family, friends, a community, are elements that would assist responding to hardship, or at least to not feel so alone through it all. This, in combination with trying to maintain general health through physical activity and as best as possible, positive internal dialogue.
Great stuff, Mon! We’re glad you moved from Melbourne!
Around the Grounds
Say it aint so! We’re very lucky to have Tony set up the R4R Park Run group and send through the results from the weekend… but I think he might get a kick out of this weeks edition! Lili Mooney is nowhere to be seen and Tony took his opportunity and literally ran with it!
Writing for Resilience
Writing 4 Resilience (W4R) began when a group of runners from the Running 4 Resilience community all started writing as a way to declutter their minds and share what they’ve learned from their struggles.
We have runners writing about everything from going sober, to stress eating, losing family, being a tired parent, living with a rare disease, retirement, and what it’s like being at a crossroad in life.
It’s certainly not all doom and gloom, with the writing often more focused on the silver linings in each scenario, and this week… W4R got a little brighter with the first instalment of Singh’s substack!
Writing is one of the most beneficial things you can do for your mental health. You don’t need to share it publicly, you just start writing your thoughts and see where it takes you after 10 minutes. It will force you to think, communicate, and reflect.
“connections with others would be crucial” 100% Mon and your comment only strengthens my belief that “Resilience is the strength you draw from others”. Aka the support you get from those around you when the times are tough.
Ps: Great read Singhy!