Why I Run

I started running in 1993 while at University as a means of getting from A to B quickly and safely. I ran in Doc Martens and baggy jeans, which maybe wasn’t ideal, but I felt less conspicuous than if I had been wearing running gear.

But I continued running, completing my first half marathon in 1997 and wearing proper running gear! During my pregnancies in 2006 and 2011 I took breaks due to tiredness and my increasing size – but the half marathon distance remains my favourite event. While I have done London, Las Vegas and a couple of other full marathons it doesn’t hold much appeal for me. I would, oddly, do an ultra marthon where the focus is on navigation, picnics and enjoying a whole day out with friends. I recently also re-kindled my love for swimming, but this time open-water. That’s a story for another day.

Running is such a huge part of my life and I gained my UKA LiRF (Leader in Running Fitness) qualification in 2013 and established my mums-only group, Wakefield Running Mamas with the local council, West Yorkshire Sport and UK Athletics. I went on to gain the UKA CiRF (Coach in Running Fitness) qualification in 2016 and now coach ladies of all ages from 5k through to ultra distance. I’m proud to also coach a specific over 65s group once a week. I run to socialise, have fun, keep fit, keep sane, clear my head, hopefully inspire, and sometimes come up with new ideas.

Emma Hardy

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