If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I often refer to the group of girls I run with in Bristol as the Hill Killer Girls (HKG). That’s because Bristol is super hilly, the hills are a killer but we kill the hills. I know, I know, I can come up with lots of random stuff when I am on an endorphin high from a run. Check this post to see how HKG was born. I terribly miss my HKG and cannot wait to be back in Bristol at the end of January to start running with them. In the mean time, I have asked them to answer a few questions for me on their running story.
Today, meet Hannah, our latest HKG recruit. You might remember that I met Hannah via instagram and that our first run together was a speed session on week 1 of my marathon training journey!
Hi Hannah, how long have you been running for?
I’m not going to count the forced cross-country runs as a school child, those memories were not so fond! Recreationally or for fun/fitness since university; so approximately 9 years.
What are you training for at the moment?
The Atlantic Coast Challenge (three marathons in three days on the Cornish Coast Path) and my first Triathlon.
What’s your favourite thing about running?
I don’t have a single favourite thing about why I love to run; but my addiction stems from the following…..
- The feeling of improvement. It’s down to good old-fashioned hard work; to experience a change in fitness, speed or duration you have to put in the miles. It requires fierce dedication, no excuses, no shortcuts, no laziness!
- Running/training and keeping fit really helps discipline other areas of my life and gives me an excuse to switch off and reflect. I think it is healthy as hard-working professional to indulge in a hobby or activity that diverts the mind from the workplace; plus I’m pretty addicted to endorphins.
- The amazing places I get to explore whilst doing it. Since signing up to run the ultra marathons (I have my eye set on the UTMB in 2017) the off-road training has taken me to some stunning coastal and mountain locations within the UK. I’ve experienced some real woweeee, lump in throat moments; the UK is a beautiful place to live and run.
- Last but not least, the new friends I’ve made. It is so refreshing to meet a group of like-minded fitness addicts who are lovely, encouraging and fun to train with.
What’s your favourite distance to run?
I don’t think I have a favourite distance. I enjoy short runs, middle distance runs, and silly distance runs. It really depends on whether it’s a training run, race or a let’s get out for some fresh air kind of run. I know which distances are more successful when considering my PBs.
What was your favourite race?
My first marathon which also was The Virgin London Marathon. I ran it under very personal circumstances, raising money for a charity close to my heart. There were a lot of ‘I’m so proud to be British’ moments that day; it is a very special event and day.
Do you run with a watch or are you a “naked” runner?
I do tend to run with a watch if I’m training for a race as I like to track my distance and shift in speed. It also helps inform me if I’m having a sluggish day, I can then assess external factors/influences to help work out how it affects my training. If I’m not training then, nope just get outside and enjoy it.
What are your favourite running shoes?
Road running Asics, off-road/trail shoes either Invo-8’s or Salomons.
Do you cross-train? If so, what do you do?
Yes, I believe this is vital to stay injury free. Running puts a lot of pressure and strain on the body. Cross-training is so important to keep the muscle groups strong and your body healthy. I actually cycle, use kettle bells and Kayla Itsines’ BBG in between my training runs. It’s a brilliant all over body workout that is fantastic as you can do most of it at home. I am testament to this; currently working on strengthening a poorly Achilles due to the fact I eased off the cross-training and ramped up the mileage.
Do you have any tips for other runners out there?
To give it a go, especially beginners. I hear people so often say ‘I can’t run’….but everyone can run (well unless you have an injury or medical conditions which prevents training). It doesn’t have to be fast, or long.
Do you have a running mantra?
Get outdoors and enjoy it…..
Feel free to answer some of these questions in the comments