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I’m a runner Chelsea Halfpenny

Th e Casualty and Emmerdale actor on discovering the social running community, parkrun and going further than she ever believed possible
Chelsea (right) with co-star Jaye Griffiths at the start of the Great North Run

Performing runs (pun intended) in Chelsea Halfpenny’s family. Her mother is a DJ and her aunt is the actress Jill Halfpenny. It was her fellow actors that convinced her to try running, to raise money for Bloodwise. Running is a relatively new thing in my life. Th e seed was sown when I was in Emmerdale. Chris Chittell (who plays Eric Pollard) is really into running and raises money for the blood-cancer charity, Bloodwise. We were very close and shared a lot of scenes together and he kept trying to get me to take up running, but I told him it just wasn’t for me. I was never that into sport at school. I was too focused on dancing and acting. Although I was okay at cross-country. When I joined Casualty in 2015, many of the cast were runners and George Rainsford (who plays Ethan Hardy) ran for Bloodwise, too. It was like a sign and it’s such a great charity, so I finally gave in.

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February 2019
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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?