Honestly, I can’t remember what I was thinking after we took off from the starting line. We headed off through the streets of Minsk. I am so grateful to the 3 boys on the bikes for showing us the way, it was a detail that I did not want to deal with on the first day.
It felt so good to be on the road, and it is the most freeing feeling in the world. This is why anybody that organized adventures will tell you, the best part of the journey is just to get started.
The old me would have still be stressing about something, but I have learned to take things day by day. When you know you must run 300 km its best to just take everything step by step and all I could do was let the experience write itself.
The one thing that stands out clearly to me on that first day is to get over the big roads you have to use the subway tunnels to cross the street. So not only were we getting our running exercise we were also getting our own private stairmaster training done.
We also had to navigate ourselves over, around, and under some large laned highways.
What I did enjoy is that we literally ran into a few fellow runners that were up early on the streets of Minsk. We waved and invited them to run with us, and to my surprise we picked up at different times two different girls.
It was an advantage that both of them spoke English, and with Diana we had a nice little chat about what I was doing in Belarus. She was only out for small jog and ended up running much longer than expected. In fact she ran far enough from home that one of the boys had to give her a metro ticket to get back home.
To me, I felt like we were so far away from Minsk but actually we were only 10 km away from the start and I had to stop and take a little break. I had to put on sunscreen because I had drastically underestimated the sun. So like a formula 1 pitstop, I dropped my bag, loaded up on a little snack, hydrated, changed out my water bottles, and applied my sun protection
We took a group photo and it is one that I remember very well. It was the first big milestone on the journey. It was also the point where I felt like we were now on the edge of leaving the city, and moving into a new section of the journey.
Over the next few kilometers I said goodbye to Zheyna and Dimitri as they would ride back to their homes. Luckily I would see them again.
So after that the journey continued and we would be leaving the big city and saying goodbye to Minsk.