“Healthy body, healthy mind” - scaling scouse hills and sprinting through Liverpool’s docks

In the fourth of our series, woo and New Balance meet Zac, who’s part of Liverpool’s diverse 2-Step Collective

In the fourth of our series, woo and New Balance meet Zac, who’s part of Liverpool’s diverse 2-Step Collective

By Team Woo06 Apr 2023
4 mins read time
4 mins read time

Jogging through Liverpool’s historic riverside and up onto Everton Park’s majestic hill; the fourth of woo and New Balance’s series of videos casting a light on the many diverse running clubs across the UK takes us to Liverpool.

This time we see DJ papu. raf return to the joys of running with the assistance of Zac, who’s been running with the 2-Step Collective. Forged in the creative Baltic Triangle of the city, the group is designed to reclaim space previously designed for Liverpool’s colonial past, and make it about a progressive future.

We caught up with Zac to find out how his positivity and boundless energy spreads across the community he runs with and why he likes to feel part of a pack.

“I feel like me going out and spreading my positivity on everyone else helps me. Healthy body, healthy mind, it’s as simple as that.”

For all his enthusiasm, Zac only first started running during lockdown “So I guess I was a late bloomer in the running scene. I got into running very quickly because I’ve always been an active person, playing basketball mainly and other sports. So once I found a routine and running plan I just became obsessed with challenging myself and just being better in general. All in, I took up running a lot quicker than I thought I would.”

“You’ll explore new areas, new paths, new challenges, terrains and experiences so you can look at a lot of things differently."
Zac, member of Liverpool’s 2-Step run club

His joy of running only grew from there, and part of his motivation is not just to “improve my day to day life and wellbeing but, most importantly, to inspire others and get other people involved.” He’s got a palpable enthusiasm for the race that is testament to the endorphins swirling round the hobby: “I feel everyday I just have more energy and a lot more to give back to the world through something as simple as running.”

Liverpool, he says, is particularly good for running because it’s got so many different areas - all places to reach that much faster on a quick footing: “You’ll explore new areas, new paths, new challenges, terrains and experiences so you can look at a lot of things differently. The urban landscapes in Liverpool are amazing and great to take in whilst running.”

As a bit of a leader of the pack, Zac’s there to encourage others to run better - or just run at all - and he takes such pride in this: “I love getting out with people and putting them through workouts and encouraging and inspiring them. It makes me feel so good knowing that I’m helping people and morale is high in the group.”

He’s got every expectation that the 2-Step Collective will grow and grow, because “I always say, ‘the only way is up’! It can only get better for me and our community and I just know we’ll see more members, new faces, new opportunities.”

“The value that running brings to me is priceless, it’s very special because it holds me accountable knowing that each week I’m going to be with others and encouraging multiple people. It has brought me a lot of great opportunities and I’ve met people and changed people's lives through running. Most importantly it’s given me a routine!”

The group, which he joined two years ago, is important to him because “You can encourage each other, push each other to the boundaries. You can also reap the physical and mental benefits and most importantly the social side of it. And to people that run alone, well there’s nothing wrong with that, but running with a partner will naturally get you to be better and in the long run, you will get maximum benefits.”

And in 2-Step Collective, morale and collectivism is key: “Liverpool is a very diverse place and I feel like even though there’s a lot of different groups and backgrounds, we can relate through our conversations when running, and I just feel like that brings us together, it’s very special!”

Any words of encouragement right now for people reading and perhaps sceptical of what can be achieved on a run? “The beauty of running is it’s so flexible, you can run any distance you want, or even just run for a set time so for example if you only have 30 mins spare in a day, you can go out and do a 30 minute run and that’s you done.”

This article has been brought to you in partnership with New Balance, which is working to get people on the move with its 2023 TCS London Marathon range.