Perth, Western Australia native Darren Pawski has spent nearly 30 years serving in critical positions of leadership while working in the finance industry. With previous experience that includes essential roles with the region’s most respected financial institutions, Darren has long been a key contributor able to draw on a vast and varied skill set. In his current role as the managing director of Synergy Financial Solutions, Darren provides his exceptional professional insight and expertise to clients of the boutique financial services firm. An avid distance runner who has traveled to over 40 countries, Darren enjoys being able to explore new places with nothing more than his own two feet.

What is your hobby?

I’ve always found a great deal of solace through long-distance running, and it’s something I have been doing for nearly all my life.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

I had some friends who entered a local road race, so I decided I’d like to give competitive distance running a try. I did well enough that I was inspired to join and compete on the cross country team.

Tell us what you love about it.

I love that I don’t need to bring anything other than a pair of running shoes to be able to head out on a run wherever I happen to be, and I have been able to experience some of the most spectacular scenery while out on a run in places all over the world.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your hobby?

There is a local running club that gets together for a long run every weekend, so whenever I’m in town I like to meet up with them.

Have you had to invest in equipment and if so, please share some of the things you’ve bought.

I change out my shoes about every 200 to 300 miles, and I have quite a few pairs of flats I wear for racing.

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

There’s a local store in town that specializes in running supplies, so I typically head there whenever there is something I happen to need.

Are there any good books for beginners?

“Once a Runner,” by John L. Parker is by far the best book every written about serious distance running. It takes a tremendous act of will to avoid heading straight for the track after reading any passage in that book.

How has this changed your life?

I’ve been able to get to know places more intimately than even some of the locals simply because of running. I’ve run everywhere from the Dipsea Trail in Northern California to the Waiatarua Circuit in New Zealand, and some of the vistas I’ve experienced during these runs have been nothing short of remarkable.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

It’s so easy to try to do too much, too soon. Take it slowly at first and listen to your body.

Are there any other hobbies you have?

I love to travel, and I visited over 40 countries and hope to visit many more in the coming years.