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Meet the R4R Runners #46
Elly & TJ
Welcome to the 46th edition of the ‘Meet the R4R Runners’. This week we get to meet a couple of people I’ve been fortunate enough to know before R4R started. I know Elly and TJ through my wife, and whether it’s the absolute nonsense TJ and I talk about, or whether it’s the energy Elly brings to every encounter, I’ve always appreciated their friendship.
They are R4R regulars on a Wednesday night and despite being competitors against ‘Running for Quizilience’ in the Dock Trivia just gone, they’re an integral part of our community. So without further ado, let’s knock off the second couples edition of the Meet the R4R Runners!
What are your names?
Elly Johnston & Tim Johnston (TJ)
Where are you from?
Elly: Originally from Wagga Wagga, NSW, then grew up in Yass before moving to Canberra in 2017.
TJ: Christchurch, New Zealand
What's your favourite thing about Canberra? (apart from R4R obviously)
Elly: I am such a Canberra lover and there are so many things that make it a place I want to live forever! Having the majority of my friends here definitely helps, but an early morning LBG walk or weekend coffee with friends are what makes it great. Plus I have a 3-minute commute to work, so that’s nice too!
TJ: I like how Canberra feels like a small town with the big city benefits. And you can get from one end to the other in less than an hour
How did you hear about R4R and when did you first attend?
Elly: We started attending R4R in the very early days through our friendship with Matt, but then got VERY slack in 2021 (I don’t think we attended a single run that year!). Very glad to be back consistently in 2022
TJ: We knew the Breens prior to R4R so went along to support Matty. Plus, there was a feed put on afterwards in those days so that was always good.
What's your favourite thing about R4R?
Elly: I love that I can show up on a Wednesday night, catch up with friends, and get my exercise in after work. It’s so great knowing that I don’t even need to text my friends to organise/confirm we are going, it’s just a regular spot in our calendars.
I also LOVED when trivia was running at the Dock on Wednesday nights, we would always go there after the run and (usually) not do very well. 2023 is the year the Cackling Matts become the trivia champions.
TJ: I love (and sometimes hate) how it gets you on the move mid-week and the message "just keep moving". Everyone seems to have a great time and loves being part of the R4R community.
We're coming up on our 3rd birthday soon, do you have any ideas on what we should do before we turn 4?
Elly: I really liked that in October, Parkrun did a push for ‘parkwalk’ to get more people involved who might not be able to/want to run. I think it would be cool if we did a ‘Walking for Resilience’ week that encourages everyone to get involved and walk the 3km or 6km (Also means I don’t have to run that week…)
TJ: Bring back the free feed
Unfortunately TJ, that boat might have sailed when the Dock was staring down the barrel of 150 pizzas every week… and Elly, I don’t mind that idea! but next question, What's the longest you've ever run?
Elly: As of a few weeks ago, 21.1km!
Are you planning on taking part in any races or events soon or are there any just gone?
Elly: We just did the Canberra Times Fun Run a few weeks ago where we completed our first half marathon Also did City2Surf in August, so not sure what the next race is, but am looking forward to running for a while without ‘training’ for something.
TJ: I just knocked off my first (and probably last) Half Marathon a few weeks ago.
Which three people (alive or dead) would you like to run 6km with?
My Oma, who passed away in 2018. As I’m sure most people with loved ones who have passed away would feel, I always wish I asked her more questions about her life. She moved to Australia from Holland following the war when she was just 15 and I think I only recently realised what an incredible feat that was.
Kim Kardashian – I don’t care what people say, I think she is such an incredible businesswoman and is so calculated and smart in how she’s built her brand and matured with it.
Michelle Obama – I read her book and loved the insight into life in the White House, and would love to ask her more about that!
Richie McCaw - He’s the GOAT
Nedd Brockman - This guy is just a legend. I was moaning about running 21KM on the weekend and he did that x5 times a day for 37 odd days
John Daly - Just so I'm not the slowest and I reckon he would be a great yarn
What does resilience mean to you?
Elly: I sometimes don’t think I am the most resilient person, so maybe not the best to answer this question either. But I think it means recognising when you aren’t feeling at your peak mental-health wise and accepting that – but also not wallowing in it and still getting out and doing things in your life that will help improve that state of mind.
TJ: For me it's just about having the courage to take that next step when the walls are closing in on you a bit. You never know, the next step could be the game changer and having the belief that if you keep plodding along, it will happen.
When you look back on the hardest moment/s in your life, is there anything you wish you could have told yourself?
Elly: I think I would just tell myself that you’re not going to feel this way forever – and you might even look back on this time as a learning experience.
TJ: You never know what's around the corner, if you just keep going and back yourself, most things will sort themselves out.
Unreal, guys. Thank you.