Budding young entrepreneur Maria Doran is by her own admission a novice runner but the Young Apprentice finalist is picking up the Runher baton and will take part in her very first 10K on Friday 24th May when the second Belfast Telegraph Runher 10K Coastal Challenge gets underway at 7pm at Seapark, Holywood.
Organiser and Race Director Michael Jenkins, from retail outlet Pure Running, introduced the new concept last May and Runher’s Coastal Challenge was inundated with entries from women of all ages and abilities who ran, jogged or walked the 10K course which hugs the shoreline from Seapark to Crawfordsburn Country Park.
Maria, an upper sixth student at Victoria College, is working hard this year for her A Levels in Drama, Politics and Business Studies. She frequently works out at the gym but is planning to up her sessions and do as much running as possible to reach peak fitness prior to Friday 24 May. Maria is also taking advantage of Runher’s special beginner’s training schedule to help build up her fitness levels (visit www.runher.co.uk for details).
“Although this is my first 10K event and my first Runher I’m really excited to be taking part and I’ll be encouraging all my friends to join me,” said Maria. “I’ll also champion Runher on Twitter and of course will tweet about how my training is progressing over the next couple of months. I think Runher is a fantastic idea to help girls improve their fitness. I know it will be a challenge but I’m very much looking forward to it and I’m positive it will all be worth it in the end!”
Joining Maria at this year’s Coastal Challenge are Runher ‘veterans’ Belfast Telegraph Woman of the Year Kate Richardson and Open & Direct Miss NI, Tiffany Brien. Record breaking rower Kate who crossed the Atlantic to highlight the plight of trafficked women, thoroughly enjoyed last year’s inaugural event.
“There was an amazing atmosphere and the fact that it was so varied made it a really brilliant experience. Runher offers a tremendous opportunity for women to look after their health and fitness,” she said.
Open & Direct Miss NI, Tiffany Brien is now a Runher regular and has consistently been amongst the frontrunners! Holywood based Tiffany chalked up a fantastic seventh position at Runher’s October outing and will be aiming for a top time on May 24th. A champion sailor Tiffany is hoping to book a place at the next Olympics in Rio de Janiero and is currently training hard on a daily basis. Tiffany is also competing in a number of upcoming events including the Belfast City Marathon on May 6th and plans to sail across the Irish Sea with Mark Pollock.
Reflecting on last May’s Coastal Challenge event Tiffany said: “The 10K course was a fantastic route, very different and of course the weather was glorious that evening. I’m really looking forward to this May and hopefully the sun will shine again!”
Belfast Telegraph Marketing Manager Joanne Uprichard has several Runher competitions under her belt and will once again be part of the action on 24th May.
“Last year’s Runher Coastal Challenge was a fantastic evening and the Belfast Telegraph team are really looking forward to the 2013 event. Whether you walk or run it’s a great physical challenge and offers fabulous scenery and good company! Hopefully we’ll have the same stunning weather this year,” she said.
Race Director Michael Jenkins said: “Our big focus this May is the “Runher Team Challenge. “We’re keen to encourage ladies to join up with friends, family, work colleagues or fellow fundraisers and enter as a team in the charity/business section online. It’s a wonderful opportunity to champion a cause and raise much needed cash for a charity close to your heart or to just simply take up a challenge with friends or colleagues.
“This year we’re encouraging lots of local charities to recruit members to take part in Runher and to date a number of organisations including Marie Curie, Tiny Life, Action Cancer and Macmillan, have pledged to rally their supporters and set up teams. Charity groups will also be represented in our Runners’ Village located close to the finish line in Crawfordsburn Country Park alongside a BBQ and entertainment for all the family. To help build up runners’ adrenalin the gang from Cool FM will be at the Seapark start zone with the Cool FM bus and at the finish area physios from Apex Clinic will offer complimentary massages to help alleviate any aching muscles! We’re aiming to create a fantastic buzz and great camaraderie similar in style to Dublin’s mini marathon.”
Online entry for Belfast Telegraph Runher is now open and costs £15 until the end of March. From 1st April sign-up will cost £18 per entrant. To register online and check out up to date event details visit www.runher.co.uk. Runher is also on Twitter @runherofficial and the event hashtag is #BelTelRunher.
Initiated in 2007, Belfast Telegraph Runher is Northern Ireland’s largest female only running event. The 2013 programme is also backed by Sport Northern Ireland, North Down Borough Council, Pure Running, Premier Inn, Belfast City Council and Cool FM.