Saturday, 5 November 2016


Before I ran in the new forest half marathon this summer I read a Poem by Ben Wilkinson called Graft, at the time I thought nothing of it but after surprising everyone with a top ten finish  and a PB it really struck home.

The reason it struck home was people's reaction to my time! It was almost as if it were a fluke, a one off. Everyone congratulated me on my time and expressed how good it was but no one with the exception of my wife acknowledged the hard work that went into it. The hundreds of miles pounding pavements , early starts, sore muscles, rain, headwinds, chafing, heat and blisters that made that personal best.

It's certainly made me really think about how I react to my friends and colleagues successes and achievements, I think its important to remember that however surprising something is its important to acknowledge not only their success but also the hard work that went into it.

Graft by Ben Wilkinson

It must get easier over time though
He smiles, guessing
Drills in the blistering cold,
Running full tilt

Can't be as hard as it sounds,
Mile after mile
Climbing the old hill
Of weakness versus the will

Else how do you do it?
Again, the sorry hope
That it might come simply
Shows it's idle head,

Or worse, attempts
to dismiss its own failure
as the luck, chance
or dumb skill as the best.

We're all guilty of it.
No wonder in a world
where wealth is laid
for some on a guilded plate.

But anything worthwhile
is pure heart and courage.
I'm not talking the rich
and their inheritance.

Fuck that shit. Graft hard,
and hold true to this -
no-one got anywhere fast
without striving for it.