The joy of running

Finding great outdoor spaces for racing and chasing in the spring sunshine…

The joy of running

There are a number of things that Little Miss A does that seem to be an ingrained part of her personality. One is her love of running. It started pretty much as soon as she was walking and she’s been a speedy little thing ever since.

We’ve had lots of running around the living room, more often than not kitted out in a special ‘costpume’ consisting of running shoes (could be her slippers, could be her jelly shoes), a pink winter hat with flaps over the ears and sometimes goggles.

There’s only so much sprinting you can do in the house, of course. Better still is when we can find a big wide space outdoors and let her run free. The look of pure happiness on her face never fails to make me smile. It’s running for the sheer joy of running and the exhilaration and sense of freedom she feels is infectious.

We found two brilliant places for running this month.

The first was at a nearby National Trust property. As we wandered around, we came across a huge circular croquet lawn enclosed by tall hedges which made a perfect running track. This proved irresistible for Little Miss A, who ran all the way round a couple of times before challenging Mummy to a race. We both giggled madly as I chased after her. Puffed out after a few laps, I realised a) how unfit I am! and b) how much fun running can be, understanding some of the appeal to Little Miss A.

The second location is in our local park, at her current favourite play area there, the mud mounds. I’ve written about these before: small hills of compacted mud, that make an ‘offroad’ track for older kids to scoot or ride bikes around. We love them simply as an interesting place to explore. They were great when Little Miss A was mastering walking, challenging her balance as she navigated up and down the inclines. Now she has discovered that they are brilliant for running on!

The space is large enough to have a good sprint around and contained enough to be able to do laps…

Running track

There are gentle slopes alongside slightly steeper ‘hills’ to be scrambled up…

Running up hills

And enough mud and dirt to please my little messy monster girl, perfect for poking a stick in when in need of a break from racing…

Digging in mud

We had so much fun here on a beautiful spring day this week. Little Miss A incorporated some pretend play into her running, telling me that the mounds were her houses and I was the big bad wolf chasing her and blowing them down. She’s been doing the story of the Three Little Pigs at preschool and is fascinated by it. She loved turning this into a game of chase, hiding behind a slope until I had huffed and puffed and blown the house down, at which point she ran to find a new abode. She enjoyed it so much that some details from the original story were amended slightly: “This house is made of brick, Mummy, but the bricks aren’t stuck together so you can blow them really hardly…”

I’m sure Baby E wondered what on earth we were up to, as I pushed her up and down the mounds in her pushchair, running after her sister doing my best wolf growls. (Not to mention the other park users passing by!)

Chase

After a good play, we headed home for a snack, eyes shining and cheeks flushed from all the running around. I’m sure we’ll be making our way back there again soon…

Mud Mud Marvellous Mud - Outdoor Play Party

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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8 Comments on “The joy of running”

  1. Coombe Mill says:

    Running and a little imagination can transform a landscape. Looks like your daughter is totally taken with the places you found and the stories she has built. Thank you for sharing on Country Kids.

  2. brightskymom says:

    So wonderful that you were up running too! Sometimes I let my children have all the fun…
    ~Lee

    • Ha, yes! After being pregnant and unable to run around as much, and then tied to newborn nursing etc, it’s really lovely to let Daddy take care of the baby so I can join in with my big girl :) But it does remind me how I need to get my pre-pregnancy fitness back!!

  3. Mae says:

    I love this. So awesome you find time for what your daughter loves and that makes her happy.

  4. Mudpie Mama says:

    Running seems to be something all kids love. We had a wild play day at work today and the kids just loved the chase games. A chance to run round like a maniac and giggle like mad. They never seem to get out of breath though. I remember those days hey!
    It sounds like Little Miss A may have a running career in her future, bless her and I love those mud mounds, perfect for running around on.
    Thanks so much for linking up to the Outdoor Play Party again, hope to see you there again from tomorrow :-)

    • The mud mounds are fab, we’re so lucky to have our park so close :) I like the sound of a wild play day! There’s just something about running – it always makes me smile to see kids racing around. I can imagine Little Miss A getting very into it for school races!!


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