Routes— Molly Polak
Firstly, introduce yourself; who you are, what you do and who you run with/for?
I’m Molly, a born and bred Melbournian who loves nothing more than spending my spare time running, socialising and sipping on good coffee. I work for Nike Pacific as an EKIN (Nike backwards), and one of the main components of the role is educating people on products that can help them become better athletes. This involves a decent amount of time talking about sneakers and running shoes!
When it comes to my running I run with Hunter Athletics, a community-based run group in Melbourne and have done so for the last 2.5 years.
How long have you been running and what is your main source of motivation?
Running has been a part of my life in some capacity since I was a young, I ran in primary school and at various stages throughout high school, always enjoying many different forms of movement and sport. It wasn’t until my last year of high school that I started to run as my primary sport, so that’s about 8 years ago now!
I have so many reasons that motivate me to run, but mostly it’s just out of a pure love for it, and the multifaceted ways that it enriches my life. The friendships and connections that I have formed through running always stand out as one of the things I think of first. It’s pretty incredible how running can be such a powerful tool that connects people from all different walks of life.
Where do you live? Do you find yourself sticking to your local routes or exploring outside your area?
I live around the inner west or south-east of the bay, depending on which residency I am at (soon to be settling in Newport). As much as I love my local routes, I also venture all around the place, both to explore and to meet different people. I know I am not alone in choosing destinations to travel to based off what the local running is like, so I definitely like to get out and see different parts of the world by foot!
What is your go-to running route in/around Melbourne and why?
My go to stretch is along the bay (both sides!). This is closest to where I live and I love that it goes for a long way and is nice and flat, which makes it suitable for whatever kind of run I am getting after that day. Also importantly, I know that these routes are dotted with many options for a post run coffee, which is a crucial component of any morning run.
If you could pick one road or trail to run anywhere in the world, where would it be and is it somewhere you have run before?
The Hudson River boardwalk or Central Park in New York (or both in the same run!). I have run here before and I am obsessed with this city, I will always be happy running anywhere in and around Manhattan. There is something special about the energy of New York City, from a tourist perspective but also with the local running culture.
Are currently or do you have plans to train for any events in the future? If so, what and why?
At the moment the race on my calendar is the full marathon at the Nike Melbourne Marathon festival in October, if all goes well. I usually have my eye set on some overseas marathons, but with travel off the cards at the moment it will be nice to be a part of my hometown event, which was the first marathon I ever ran. There will also undoubtedly be a lot of other runners from Hunter participating, and a training build with all your friends is always super fun and rewarding.
Photography— Riley Wolff
Route 01— Noosa
Route 02— Brisbane River
Route 03— Williamstown
Route 04— Bayside