Bryan Lim | Glasshouse Run Club
We recently asked Bryan to give us an insight into his love for running in Melbourne, Australia, building the Glasshouse RC and how great the diversity of people within the crew appears to be..
Words: Bryan Lim
Images: Credited throughout
"I picked up running in 2016 having moved to Melbourne three years prior and have fallen in love with both the sport and my city ever since. Melbourne is so “runnable”, and running is a great way to explore the city. Unlike any other mode of exploration, you are able to engage with your surrounds at street level which the city provides plenty of stimuli at, cover plenty of ground and yet have unlimited opportunities to explore new places.
We are blessed with ample options when it comes to run settings and views, from two rivers (Yarra and Maribyrnong rivers), beaches, athletics tracks, shared urban trails, off-road trails (Studley Park) and the trinity of paved gravel loops that are Albert Park, Princes Park and the Tan Track around the Botanical Gardens, amongst others. On any run, you can create short and long segments and routes within or across these options. In addition, and not having to go too far out of town, the door opens us to a multitude of trail options.
Why explore alone when you can share the journey with friends? Although running is an individual sport, it is largely a social one too. My running journey started out as a dare to run the marathon. That I did, but my initial journey was lonely and lacking purpose, especially through our dreary winters. I soon found the light through joining and running with various clubs and crews. The running scene in Melbourne is inclusive, supportive and just fun! At the time, I found myself spending Tuesdays at a friend’s social track meet simply called Track Tuesdays. At these sessions I broke PBs with the support of fellow runners, made friends and eventually started leading sessions.
Running means something different today as it is an integral part of my lifestyle. The most important part is no longer about myself but about coaching runners and fostering and furthering the running culture in Melbourne through my crew, Glasshouse Run Club. I felt the need to create a unique identity to our track sessions; a family of runners that anyone can call it to be their home. Amid achieving my own goals, I discovered the ability to motivate and inspire others to strive to achieve their best as well. I have been fortunate in expanding my sphere of influence, with a good friend of mine encouraging me through sponsoring my accreditation to become an accredited athletics coach, being given opportunities to coach at brand affiliated and social clubs, and for collaborations with brands like Fractel. Since focusing on coaching, I have learned that witnessing and helping my runners succeed brings about a different kind of accomplishment and joy, a sense of fullness.
Building up Glasshouse was and is not without its challenges. The tenets of the club are diversity, inclusivity, supporting others, having a fair go and personal betterment. Over time people come and go, and people have challenged what the club stands for. Covid-19 has also been another hurdle that we were able to overcome, with many of our runners returning to their home countries and not being able to host sessions through Melbourne’s extended and multiple lockdowns. Fortunately, through social media, we were able to host virtual sessions, administer virtual training plans, and very importantly, continue to curate our weekly team photos creatively through my very talented co-leader Kevin! We are also still in touch with many of our runners overseas. What is amazing too are our runners’ resilience and dedication in keeping our club spirit alive and the values we uphold.
We are now back with our weekly sessions at Olympic Park and every session is a reminder of how lucky we are to be able to run outside, together and do so with a view of our amazing city. Alas, we can pick up from where we left off. Glasshouse is more than running; it is a safe social space that has evolved to include trail running and cycling, and even exploring the multitude of good eats Melbourne has to offer! I look forward to welcoming more runners from all walks of life and embrace the rebuild post lockdown.
In the meantime, we eagerly await to run in our new Glasshouse Fractel caps!"