David (husband) suggested it and I don’t think he even guessed how much I would fall in love with this sport. I had never run so, nearly 7 years ago David suggested we go for a run … of course this was not on the road or flat but up Glenkin. To say I found it hard was an understatement, but it pushed me more and more. When I could run Glenkin all the way, I then joined the all female running group in Dunoon and met my lifelong friends, Jean Bryson and Kirsty Mundell. The rest as they say is history as I then found my passion in trail and hill running with Dunoon Hill Runners.
Why do you run?
Because I am lucky to be able to, and it’s my passion, my freedom, my time out, my head space. It’s my challenge exploring new trails and hills that you can only reach on foot. Oh and I love rivers and mud and being out with my buddies – Jean, Michelle, Clare and Kirsty have joined me on many runs where laughter is very much on the agenda. When Ricky joins me on long runs he just wants to bury me with a shovel and leave me on the trail!! Think my enthusiasm grates after 20 miles …
What is your favourite running route?
In Argyll, we are so lucky to be able to enjoy what is on our doorstep and it is all beautiful. I never tire of the Loch Eck loop.
What have been your favourite races?
The Devil o’ the Highlands Ultra – 43 miles from Tyndrum to Fort William, a stunning route where you are running through what has got to be the most magical place, Glencoe.
The Cateran Trail Ultra – 55 miles through the Scottish Highlands (even though Jean said my feet looked like tripe at the end!).
The Carnethy 5 – a mad 6 mile hill race in the Pentlands.
What is your greatest running achievement?
I ran my first marathon in Lochaber with Jean Bryson in memory of my mum Violet who sadly lost her battle with Ovarian Cancer 11 years ago. I ran for the charity The Eve Appeal and raised nearly £2,000. Since then I have raised money for Breast Cancer and Cystic Fibrosis charities all from my running.
What are your goals/ambitions?
To run my seventh Ultra but my first solo race in a few months in the Lake District. As Bryan said to me, I’ll always find someone to talk to and I love that I return from every race with new friends. Also running with our club and enjoying old and new challenges together. Watching our club grow and develop and having this amazing bunch of friends who really are the best.
Who is your running hero?
I admire anyone who gets up one day and takes action, pulls on their trainers and starts running because that really is the hardest part. I also love Simon Pegg who plays the character Dennis in the movie “Run Fat Boy Run”. It tells the tale of what every non runner goes through to become a runner and the challenges faced – and also because his shorts are more micro than our very own coach’s! You have to watch, and run with the coach in the summer 🙂
What is your most essential piece of kit?
My shoes – I have a lovely variety for all different terrain (say nothing, Pup!), Shock Absorber bra ( girls know why), my mobile phone in case Ricky did take me out with a shovel, snacks and £10 just in case – although on a beautiful hot race last July in the Lakes it almost got spent as Jamie and I passed a beer garden and the temptation was nearly too much!
Do you have other interests/pastimes?
My brilliant family and watching my daughter Bethany develop her own love for running. Our working spaniel, Jess, and friends and our running club. I’m happy being with them all and having fun on my runs.
What is your favourite inspirational running quote or piece of advice?
“It’s just a wee tootle” and, “It’s just round the corner”. You’ve all heard them and you’ve all said them back 🙂