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HAC Runner a Women’s Running magazine winner

On 28 September I was having a quiet night in, as I was running the Royal Windsor Trail Half Marathon the following day reports Lynda Copson. With a bit of time on my hands, I entered a competition in Women’s Running, lured by the heading ‘Life after the marathon – need a new goal? Welcome to Operation Ultra’. I entered, and thought nothing of it as I never win anything. But I was one of three lucky winners – free entry to the Royal Parks Ultra on 6 October (50k), full training support, new kit and in return our training experience is to feature in Women’s Running magazine over the next 3 months!

On 3 July I met the Operation Ultra team, the other two female winners, and the three male winners of the Men’s Running competition. Like me, they all juggle their running whilst holding down demanding jobs and meeting family commitments. The training day took place in Teddington, and was fantastic – inspirational talks from our various running coaches, full running MOT (yes, I knew about my tight hamstrings, glutes, and soleus muscles, but having a 2nd opinion was very useful), threshold run in Bushey Park (which is the finish of my ultra), photo shoot (unfortunately during and after the run), and video interview.

Two days later I received my personalised exercise stretching and training plan for the next two weeks – threshold runs, continuous hills, intervals and long slow runs. It will be challenging, but with the support from my fellow runners at Hillingdon AC I know I can do it. Some runners have already offered their support – not just in terms of running with me, but also giving guidance and, more importantly, offering encouragement. It would be unfair to mention names, but it is a wide cross-section of the club. I know that when I don my HAC club vest on 6 October I will be representing the club more than in any other race I have run, given the added interest of featuring in a national running magazine. It’s a good job I perform well under pressure!

I will update my progress in the next issue of OTL, but if you can’t wait to ‘read all about it’ please ‘like’ (and share) my Facebook page www.facebook.com/LyndaCopsonOperationUltra2013 – it will be full of my training highs and lows, and will be an opportunity to be part of this fantastic experience.