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Blog of the week: Now I run anywhere and everywhere!

Blog of the week: Now I run anywhere and everywhere!
Many people have their own reason for running and here, Lisa shares with us why she will never give it up.

Name: Lisa Cooper
Age: 41
Running for: 18 months
Location: Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland

What first got you into running?
I had lost 6 stones through following the slimming world food optimising plan at this stage. This is a healthy eating plan which also encouraged fitness or as slimming world call it, 'body magic'. I had always wanted to try running as my sister ran but didn't think I could. I used to go out in the dark so noone saw me! Now I run anywhere and everywhere. A colleague also organises Kirkcaldy Parkrun and convinced me to try it. I was hooked after that. The feeling of accomplishment was fantastic. 

Did you make any other lifestyle changes alongside running?
Yes, I kept my healthy eating going and reached my target weight loss of 8 stones last July 2015. Running has helped me maintain this for a year and I am never going back! I also now go to the gym at least 3 times a week and I'm a huge fan of bodypump. Running is my core fitness and everything I do is built around it. 

Lisa before and after her weight loss

How do you stay motivated? 
I know that running keeps me well physically, but also emotionally. I have a stressful job and have had some personal stresses recently too...running keeps me focused and you sort a lot out when you're running! I know a run always makes me feel better. I now take my border terrier Charlie on 5k runs too and he loves it. He's a rescue with behavioral issues as a result. I got him a running lead and he runs beside me the whole way and it's a great way for him to get rid of his energy and help me with my PB's! 

Where’s you favourite place to go running?
Loch Leven in Fife is beautiful.  A 12 mile loop with one hill and fantastic scenery. An early morning run around the Loch is amazing and liberating! One of my favourite Instagram pics was taken here.

How often do you run?
At least 3 times a week. One 5k which is usually Parkrun, one 10k and at least one long run. I'm definitely a morning runner as I enjoy these runs the best.

What are your running goals?
To keep running. I'd love to do a full marathon but I'm worried that the training and distance required may take the enjoyment away so still deciding on that one. I'm considering the new Stirling Scottish marathon next year which starts in a safari park. 

What has been your best running experience?
Running my first half marathon in May this year at Loch Leven, Kinross. It was the hardest thing I've ever done physically and emotionally. It was hilly and the hottest day of the year. I ran with my sister who was amazing and the feeling when you cross the line is one of the best feelings ever.

I also recently traveled to Texas, USA to visit relatives. I ran every day there including a 5K at the gulf of Mexico and also ran a 10K with the Austin runners club which was a brilliant experience. 

What advice would you have for people that want to start running?
Always be prepared for a tough 1st mile! That's the hardest, but once your breathing and pace settle you will realise you can do it! And the feeling you get once you've ran your first 5K...well! Parkrun is brilliant for getting people into running. I would encourage anyone to give it a go. 

A huge thank you to Lisa for sharing her love for running and please feel free to leave your comments below and we will pass them on to her.

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