Running on a Wednesday means one thing and one thing only, I get to run with some amazing and inspirational people! You see, every Wednesday evening and Saturday morning I lead a running group for survivors of sexual abuse and the people supporting them. The group is run through GINA, the social enterprise I founded and is for people wanting to learn how to run, to find ways to improve their running and/or to set themselves new challenges and goals. It provides a friendly and welcoming space for people to run together who might otherwise not feel safe enough or confident enough to run at all.
When you have experienced sexual abuse, your body has been violated. Learning to like it, love it and treat it with respect again can be a big challenge. Running helps people to do just this, enabling them to reclaim control and power, the very things the abuse took away.
As the leader of the group I am so proud and often emotional when I see running group members:
1. Overcome fears about starting to run.
2. Expressing self care and treating themselves more kindly.
3. Go running in between group sessions, simply because it makes them feel good.
4. Set themselves running goals, then go and smash them!
5. Brag about their longest ever runs and feel confident in themselves.
So this week when two running group members have both run for longer than they have ever run before, forgive me if I can’t stop smiling.
If you would like to find out more about this unique running group please click on the link here: http://gina.uk.com/running/