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Digital Subscriptions > Women’s Running > February 2019 > We’re ultra!

We’re ultra!

Going further isn’t just for elite athletes: crossing the marathon barrier is just a state of mind. Th ese three amazing women discovered the world of the ultra-marathon, and made it their own

Sophie Woods

Hairdresser, Lockonego Hair London/Chamonix

“I had absolutely no idea what I was doing when I first started running. I used to shuffle 15 minutes at a time under the cover of darkness clad in an oversized t-shirt to hide my waistline. All I knew was that I was overweight, living an unhealthy lifestyle and I had to do something about it. “Roger, my father-inlaw, became my mentor and training partner. He taught me consistency, pacing when he beat me in my first half marathon and how to take refuelling seriously. Th en I discovered some amazing women, including Lizzie Hawker winning the female race at the UTMB. I realised there were adventures to be had. “My husband surprised me with a place on the Marathon des Sables as a birthday present, built me a heat chamber in the garage and drove me to the sand dunes in Wales. I will never forget the race.

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About Women’s Running

Our new-look magazine is going from strength to strength, as are our tribe of happy runners! This issue we spoke to Mara Hafezi, a runner who is defying both her own and others’ expectations by sailing through the Marathon des Sables and by encouraging women of colour to take up running. If you’re inspired by Mara, our beginner’s guide will get you off the sofa and into your trainers in no time, and then for a bit of extra motivation, you might want to have a glance at our half marathon training guides. There’s one for beginners as well as for those of you who want to smash your PB at the next 13.1-miler. We focus on speedwork this issue too, and how building on your speed can power the rest of your running – even if it hurts while you’re doing it! Plus this issue, we’ve got the only core workout you’ll ever need: build it into your running schedule to see quick results with your strength and speed on the road. Then wind down with our feature on Sophrology: just how can this mindful practice help us live more in the moment and actually run better?