With the Black Lives Matter movement front and centre on the global news agenda, I’ve spent the last month in conversation with some amazing people from lots of different parts of our wonderful, diverse global running community.
Together with the rest of The Running Channel team, I have done my best to listen, to learn, and to work out how we can be a genuine force for good moving forwards. Most importantly we have been focused on making sure that what we do is meaningful and long-lasting.
Through those conversations, I was introduced to Denise, Jules and Trojan from London’s Emancipated Run Crew – a Black running crew created to give runners a safe space to be themselves, and to encourage those who might not otherwise take up running as a leisure activity to get involved.
We spoke to the guys from ERC about featuring in a Running Channel video, and giving them a voice through our platform in order to share their experiences. Meeting them was fantastic, and hearing many of their stories first hand left a lasting impression on me – I felt grateful that they were able to share so candidly with me, and excited to be part of such a big and important conversation.
In particular, speaking to Trojan about his experiences of running as a Black man in light of the Ahmaud Arbery case in the US opened my eyes to a reality I had never considered. Having to be so self-aware and self-conscious on a run, and trying so hard to make sure other people don’t see you as a threat must be exhausting, but despite this, I was still left with a real sense of the joy and satisfaction that Trojan and the other ERC members experienced through running.
I’m excited that my job allows me to meet new people in this way, and that Denise, Jules, Trojan and the rest of the crew were so open to engaging in an open and honest discussion about difficult subjects, and also about our mutual love of running. I hope that our final video does this justice.
My day spent in Dulwich Park filming is a day I intend to remember and continue to reflect on. Thanks for reading, and please get in touch with us on all the usual social channels if you would like to ask any questions you might have.