This month’s meet a Harrier is a lady who has been with the Harriers a few years now and is an integral part of running the club. She is a member of our committee, run leader on club night, admin on our Facebook group, and also knows to get her kit “on” as she deals with orders for our club merchandise. She was one of the main organisers for a successful 3 peaks challenge last year and is again organising a club challenge to Saddleworth Moor in June this year, throw in a working mum and also whipping up a mean afternoon cream tea, its the busy Sarah Marquis-Linley.

How long have you been running with the club?

I joined in early 2008 whilst the club still ran as one big group. I would say there were many members who made me feel very welcome, Michael Murphy, Donna Lenaghan, Helen Fenton, Gillian Hall, John Stuttard, Julie Stanton, Pete Jones, Julie Seymour to name check just a few (and I know I’ll miss someone out so I apologise now!!). The club wasn’t as big as it is now but it’s as welcoming now as it was then. Because of the warm welcome and mutual love of running it gave me the motivation to come down week after week.

What made you start running?

I used to do a circuit class in Kippax and Garforth at the sports centre and I met Pete Jones who said I should try out this running club he went to…I haven’t looked back!

Biggest running achievement?

Some people might say a race, but for me I was most proud that I ran during my pregnancy. I ran up to 28 weeks and I remember my last few runs. I ran a steady 5km on the Friday night after work and then on the Monday night my body just went “nope. That’s it, best just stick to the low impact stuff!’’. So, I got my exercise kicks from swimming and pilates. The biggest fight I had was to get back to fitness, it was a hard struggle, but I think I’m a better runner now than I was then.

Favourite race?

When I first started running, I entered many races from Leeds half, numerous 10k’s, etc but I did an event called the Moors, The Merrier a few years after joining the club, it starting in Mytholmroyd up in the Calder Valley and it was 28 undulating miles off road. I absolutely loved it! The scenery, the endurance side of things, the fact you could eat cake at checkpoints along the way, stopping and taking photos, all of it floated my running boat for sure. To date my favourite race has been the most mentally challenging which was last Sept doing Equinox24 which was a 10km lapped course of which I completed 10 laps, making it my first 100km
event, I did it over a 24hour period. Broken physically and mentally but totally appreciating what the body can do when the mind is engaged.

Running tips?

Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, there will always be someone faster and slower than you. Rest when you feel a niggle or do other exercise/cross train to keep your fitness level up. Use the experience within the club, a lot of the advice you will get will be priceless. To maintain your running fitness don’t leave massive gaps (weeks) between runs, keep the momentum up as letting it go means losing form. Give every event you enter the training it deserves to reach your goal, stay focused and apply yourself as you will reap the rewards afterwards for sure.

Best thing about being part of CGHs?

The fact I can miss a few weeks but when I turn up the chat with friends is so easy. I also thoroughly enjoy being on the committee as I’m part of a group who look to make positive changes to the way we do things.

Running is part of my life and I weave it in and around my working week and my little family.