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Helen Bly was a size 18 when she ran her first mile four years ago. Now she’s a size eight, running marathons and feeling better than she’s ever felt before
Shoes: Saucony Women’s Ride 10, £120, saucony. com/UK/


For her entire life Helen Bly had wanted to be able to run. She’d tried other ways of getting fit, including swimming and going to the gym and had even tried running on the treadmill, but nothing seemed to do it for her. However, aged 34, unfit, overweight and fed up with her life, she decided it was time to make a change – and running was going to be her outlet. Finding the courage to take those first steps, Helen began her journey towards fulfilling her lifetime ambition – a journey that has seen her doing things she could never have imagined.

Helen, a mum of two and school administrator from Rochdale, went for her very first run four years ago and has since transformed her body and her life. Completely self-trained, Helen went from being unable to run for a minute to running her first ultra-marathon this year, and has dropped six dress sizes in the process. Her battle to get fit has been hard – physically and emotionally – seeing her complete some of the hardest runs she’ll ever have to do, while pushing through feelings of shame and embarrassment. But, determined to become a stronger runner, Helen’s never lost sight of her goals and is now fitter and more confident than she’s ever been.

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Find the complete article and many more in this issue of Women’s Running - Jul-17
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About Women’s Running

Start running today with the July issue of Women’s Running magazine, on sale now! In this beginners' special, we've got a step-by-step guide to going for your first few runs, with expert input from coaches and advice from the Women's Running team - trust us, we've been there! Resident GP Dr Juliet McGrattan helps you overcome your barriers to running, and we'll also give you eight great reasons to start today. Already a runner and need to step things up? We've got an eight-move Pilates workout for you, plus for the dedicated athlete, we'll show you 10 next-level exercises to strengthen your core. Plus, don't miss part two of our 2017 Ultimate Race Guide, detailing 100 must-do races from now till December.