As part of the Gaborone Striders Running Club 10×10 Challenge, I’m paying tribute to and celebrating the TOP 10 countries reading my blog in 2022 by wearing their national or flag colours on the run – starting with Number 10 and building up to Number 1 on the Final Day. I appreciate all the people who read my blog and I’m so excited to honour the Top 10 countries in this way during the Challenge. I’ve posted a photo for each day on social media (FB and IG) but just in case you’re not on those platforms, here are the countries in positions 10 to 6!
10 – The Netherlands. I’ve never visited this country but my friend Johannes (who I featured on the blog after his life-threatening injuries) grew up there and has since lived all over the world including several years in Botswana. It’s also where fellow runner blogger Renee from Run Laugh Eat Pie calls home! If my research is anything to go by, this sounds like the place for me: “The country is famously flat and irrigated by canals, which give you hundreds of kilometres of waterside runs. This natural backdrop rubs off on the people too. Sports, especially cycling, are hugely encouraged and a basic part of life. Because of this active national attitude, there are plenty of areas to go running in.” For my run, I wore their national colour – orange!
9 – Tanzania. I am so happy that Tanzania made it onto the list as this is a country I have travelled to several times and feel at home! In my Run the World series, I featured Jazzy from Dar es Salaam, and she shared all the places she loves running in. As luck would have it, I got the opportunity to visit Tanzania just a few weeks ago and experienced running there for the first time. I also did a 3-hour epic hike in the Pugu National Forest Reserve, which is on the outskirts of the city and gives a great view of Dar es Salaam. For my run, I managed to wear most of their flag colours – blue, green and black, and Ditiro helped me with a yellow headscarf!
8 – Kenya. In this last trip to Tanzania, one of my Kenyan colleagues gave me a Kenya t-shirt so I was very happy to see Kenya on the list! When I was in transit a few years ago, I spent one night in Nairobi but sadly didn’t see much beyond the hotel and airport! So, it is a place I have on my bucket list! I’m lucky to have had guest runner blogger Wanja share what it is like to run in Nairobi, and my friend Ebulani share her adventure up Mount Kenya with us!
7 – Ireland. This country took me by complete surprise but I’m so excited! In reading up on Ireland, I found this little nugget – “Ireland doesn’t have the high mountain ranges, internationally known trail races and huge swaths of raw wilderness that typically attract trail runners. But it does offer unexpected gems that should put it high on any trail runner’s bucket list: historic paths, beautiful national parks, warm and friendly people, a lack of predatory animals and, most importantly, great pubs”. If you’re from Ireland and would like to share what it’s like to run there, please reach out to me – I would love to hear more!
6 – Australia. I was very happy to see Australia on the list as I have a few friends living there, as well as my brother-in-law! It is also where Ditiro went to university, so I visited the country twice while he was there. Sadly, I wasn’t a runner at the time, but we did do 7 days of the epic Bibbulmun Track which I always say cemented our relationship! If we could survive that level of discomfort – walking 10 – 20 km a day through tough terrain, pulling ticks off each other, and using wet wipes to wash, we can survive anything! I have featured four runners from Australia – Chandi in Melbourne and Adriel and Sandra in Sydney, and Jodie in Manjimup.
If you are from any of these countries – THANK YOU so much for all your support. When you start a blog, you just never know who you are going to reach, and it feels great to know that so many different countries are reading this little blog! Please do let me know if you’d like to feature on the blog and share more information about what it’s like to run where you are – in other words, if I was to land on your doorstep, where would you take me for a run!? For everyone else, do you think your country will feature in the TOP FIVE?! Which country will place FIRST?
I’m joining the link-up, Runner’s Roundup with Mile By Mile, Coach Debbie Runs, Confessions of a Mother Runner, Runs with Pugs, and Running on Happy! Hop on over to their blogs and others and be inspired!