TIME: 2 hours, 26 seconds
“It’s a personal challenge – and I wanted to do something for the Royal Hospital”
Why did you decide to do the half marathon?
I’m not very good at saying no to things! I also used to do a bit of running and enjoyed it. I thought this would be a nice way of meeting different people and putting faces to the names of colleagues you don’t get to see so often – it’s been a really nice way of doing that. As a physiotherapist, I spend quite a lot of my time watching Pensioners in the gym, so I felt I should be doing something as well.
Have you done anything similar before?
I’ve done a couple of half marathons before, but it was a good 10 years ago when I was quite a bit fitter. I don’t run so much anymore, because of my knees and hips and all those problems people have. I tend to do more gym stuff now. But I really enjoy running, so I thought I’d grit my teeth and push through the pain.
How have you been preparing?
I do something called Cross Fit three times a week. It’s a bit of weight training, a bit of gymnastics and a bit of HIIT (High Intensity Impact Training). I also cycle to and from work each day. Sunday is my long run day. I’m very lucky because I’m in the hydropool with the Pensioners every Monday. It’s a nice way to slip in a few extra stretches.
“Pensioner Tony’s lunchtime sessions are good – training with others pushes you on”
I’ve been going to Tony’s lunchtime training sessions too, where we do a lot of sprint-based stuff, getting the heart rate up. The sessions are good because there are other people there which pushes you on – you get more of a team feel and a bit of a sense of competition sometimes. My sister, who’s 12 years younger, is an elite runner and my dad was as well. She does this kind of sprint training all the time and it gives you a sense of just how fit they are.
My baseline fitness and lung fitness are good - my problem is gait pattern and biomechanics – some people will be weaker in certain muscle groups and stronger in others and move in a certain way. For me it’s definitely lack of core stability – Pilates and things like that help. It’s also important not to do too much too soon – you have to pace yourself.
In terms of diet I eat too much of everything, so I try to cut down generally. I’ve always been aware that if you’re training a lot and getting sore you should try to eat something protein-based afterwards.
LYNSEY’S TOP TRAINING TIPS
- Pace yourself
- Eat something protein-based after training sessions.
- Train with others to spur you on.
What are your hopes and goals?
It would be great to hit my target of £150. I’d also like to complete the Vitality Half and for it not to be too painful. I tend to think, let’s just try to get round and not die! I’ve done a half marathon in two hours six, when I was 10 years younger. Maybe I can match it, but you don’t know what’s going to happen on the day. It’s a personal challenge – I want to do something where I push myself, something I haven’t done for a long time. I also want to do something for the Royal Hospital – I’ve been here just over a year now and it’s a way to build ties with other people here and with the Pensioners, getting that feeling of doing my bit.
What are you looking forward to least – and most?
I’m hoping to finish in one piece, fingers crossed! I’m looking forward to the route too, it looks really nice. You usually get a lot of support along the way too and that makes a huge difference. I’m most apprehensive about the third quarter of the run. It’s always the hardest bit. You’re still quite a way from the finish line and the tiredness and aches and pains start to set in. The last mile is easier when you know the end is nearly there and you’re getting support from the crowds spurring you on.