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Story of my European Championship - by Yassin Bouih

Story of my European Championship - by Yassin Bouih

21. 12. 2022 4 min. reading

A golden relay that will stay in my heart. From trainings in the vineyards to the emotion of singing the National anthem on the podium for the first time; getting closer to the Europeans.

Love and hate of cross-country


For me, cross-country races have always been like that dish you don't want to eat when you're young, but your parents want you to eat because it's healthy.
I never loved them but I knew that during wintertime they would have me to be stronger in summer!
Cross-country can teach you what real effort, sacrifice, and adaptability are.
Even though the effort is huge, they've always shaped me physically and mentally, helping to finish winter training in the best way.
Yassin Bouih

My trainings in Reggio Emilia's vineyards


In the last two years, I've been training for the winter season in the Borzano's vineyards, in the province of Reggio Emilia. It's a very technical terrain with mud, hills, and curves in vineyards.
In this route, I always use spikes, and thanks to my Nike ZoomX Dragonfly I''ve been feeling more stable and safe.
I knew that the itinerary of the European Cross Country Championships of Venaria Real is full of relevant hills and slopes, therefore training in Borzano has been very helpful.

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December the 11th: European Champions in the 4x1500m mixed relay


We knew we had a strong team because my teammates Pietro, Gaia, and Federica are definitely among the strongest middle-distance runners in our national history.
We knew that running at home would be exciting and engaging.
But none of us ever expected a gold medal, both because of superstition and because cross countries are always a mystery, it's impossible to predict what will happen during the race day!
When I think back about the race I still have shivers, both thinking about my teammates' legs and mine...
The cheer of the audience has been amazing, like a kind of push from the back to the finish line!
Seeing my teammate Gaia in the last few meters was like freezing time! The group hug after the finish line has been a wonderful reward for all the sacrifices made in the vineyards!

 

Small but unforgettable moments


There have been many details that made everything unforgettable.
People screaming our names, smoke bombs, posters, the emotion of my dad waving the National flag, running in the hall of carriages of La Venaria Reale... these have been small but unforgettable moments!
The emotion in the eyes of children after the race, coming to us asking for a picture or an autograph is the thing I'll never forget! Maybe cause not so long ago I used to be one of these children. My mission is to pass down the message that with diligence and dedication you can make a difference and change things.
Yassin Bouih European Cross Country Champion


L’Italia chiamò” the sound of the Italian National Anthem I will never forget


The dream of every child starting their path in sport is to have the chance to sing the national anthem standing on the highest position of the podium.
Doing so in front of a home audience, with your family, friends, and your coach, that's the icing on the most beautiful cake.
When I was a child I hated eating fish even if my parents forced me to do so, then I started to include it in my diet and understand its importance! Cross-country means a lot of effort, and training in cold temperatures and hills but I swear, they'll pay off! Those are the words of a Cross Country European Champion who used to hate cross-country.


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by Yassin Bouih, Nike - Top4Running ambassador and National Italian T&F Team athlete
© Chiara Montesano , Paolo Codeluppi - CPstudio