Q: what is the picture about?
It's me on our farm in Aberdeenshire, 10 days ago, with Bennachie in the background, our local hill.
Q: Tell us a little bit about you!
I'm Anne, 58 yrs old, originally from South Shields, fell in love with Scotland at an early age and have now lived here longer than anywhere else. PhD in plant sciences, spent 12 years doing plant science research in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Pennsylvania. Then 17 years in the oil industry as Business Systems Manager, and for the past 13 years I've been a partner in our organic veg box business (some of the oil industry time overlapped :). Also a musician (keyboards, fiddle) and dance-caller in various ceilidh dance bands. Married, 3 cats, 6 pampered pet hens. Love nature, the outdoors, walking, the gym, writing, cinema, delicious ethical food, gardening ...
Q: How long have you been a runner?
I used to run while studying for my PhD, 35 years ago. Did a few races - 10k and half marathon. Then again about 25 years ago, but less of it. Nothing consistent since then until December 2017.
Q: Did you start running with a C25K programme? Why or why not?
A: I decided to try the cautious steady approach using couch to 5k on Endomondo to minimise the risk of injury. Had a heap of serious health issues - Lyme disease, pulmonary embolism, cancer x 2, Lyme again, over the past 5 years, so spent too much time in hospital, lost all my strength, had terrible lyme arthritis, particularly in my knees. Very happily it seems to be in remission (not sure I dare say 'cured') after taking essential oils last May thru July to combat a nasty cough/cold. Turns out that mix was very similar to the recommended anti-Lyme mixture, which I now take for a few weeks at a time, then a break. It's fantastic to have normal-sized knees again!! There's a bit of pain sometimes but squats/deadlifts/yoga really helping to minimise that. Ran 5k in April 2018, then 10k in May, and really enjoying being able to run again - and so far, no injuries!
Q: But what made you want to start running races?
A: I haven't run a race for 25 years, but I'm contemplating doing my first park run sometime in the next few weeks.
Q: What's it like to run in your area?
A: Hilly! Beautiful scenery. I'm very lucky! I mostly run on the road - very wary of tick bites, for obvious reasons, and infected ticks are tooo common these days. I like being able to enjoy looking at the scenery too, rather than having to watch every step to avoid rocks / rabbit holes / roots. If I drive 12 miles, I can reach Deeside, so one of these days will go down there for a flatter run. It's about 17 miles to the beach too, so will give that a go sometime too.
Q: What is your favourite race event so far? And why?
A: Peterhead half marathon, circa 1985, in 92 minutes. I have no idea now how I could run that far that fast! But it was a lifetime ago
Q: What are your favourite mid-race snack, and post-race meal?
A: I never used to eat during a race. After a run these days, I take some hydrolysed collagen in a cup of tea to help rebuild my knees and other joints, and often have a hard-boiled egg from one of our lovely hens for a quick burst of protein. Then I'll chop up some fresh fruit and eat it in porridge.
Q: Name a favourite running website (plus link, please!):
A: This one! It's such a lovely community, and very motivating
Q: What's next for you, running-wise?
A: Keep running! Would be nice to get faster - I'll keep doing the intervals - and perhaps further. I run a 10k or 7 miles most weeks now. I inadvertently covered 14 or 15 miles a couple of weeks ago in Lisbon when I got lost, but quite a lot of that was walking at the end ... but my feet and knees were fine, presumably because I wasn't running continuously. So it's given me a glimmer of hope that perhaps I might have another half marathon in me yet!