I never really liked running whilst at school, in fact I hated it! I preferred playing netball, hockey & tennis. I later became a bit of a gym addict, attending aerobics, Reebok step and body combat classes.
Then in 2005 I decided to enter the Race for Life in support of cancer research as my auntie had sadly passed away that year with breast cancer. I got together with a friend to do some training for it and we ended up getting the running bug!!
I cancelled my gym membership and we took to the roads & trails around Huddersfield instead. As the winter months & dark evenings drew in, we decided it would be safer to run with a group so we joined Huddersfield Road Running Club. This encouraged me to run more frequently and I began to enter some local 10k races.
I then became more competitive and wanted to push myself even further so went on to do 10 mile races, ½ marathons and then on to do my 1st marathon in London in 2008.
Although the HRR were a very friendly bunch, the training sessions weren’t pushing me enough and I wanted to further improve on my times so in 2011 I left HRR and joined Stainland Lions Running Club who are a much bigger club with lots more training opportunities including hill reps, track speed sessions etc.
I have thoroughly enjoyed running with the Lions over the past 5 years; I became the club’s Ladies Captain in 2012 until 2014 and have organised team relays, cross-country events etc. I then went on to take my LiRF (Leadership in Running Fitness) qualification through England Athletics for both road & fell running. I began entering more & more races of all distances & terrains and my times began to improve until last year when I began suffering with Achilles tendonitis which has unfortunately forced me to ease off from my training somewhat.
I am now learning to cross train more by incorporating cycling & swimming into my routine so as to keep my injury at bay!
To take part in the GNR has always been on my bucket list since taking up running but I have never managed to get in through the general ballot so when Sidhil kindly gave me the opportunity to run this in support of the Forget Me Not charity, I was over the moon!
I am really looking forward to the experience and having never been to Newcastle before, exploring the city in such a great way!!
My training plan has begun, building up the distance a little, week on week. I will surely do some long flat runs along the canal towpath to best replicate the course profile. Although I am told there are a couple of sneaky hills along the route!