Ten years ago you'd have been lucky to see me run to the end of the road. These days, running is second nature to me, from marathons to parkruns to my own Step Forward With Lewis running group. There's so many wonderful and inspiring stories in the world of running - this podcast aims to tell as many of those stories as possible.
Bruce Fordyce: Nine times Comrades winner and South Africa parkrun supremo
50:13Bruce Fordyce is a running legend. The South African has won his home country's premier event, the gruelling Comrades Ultra-Marathon, an incredible nine times. His achievements also include winning the London to Brighton race three years in a row, but these days he's more at home taking on a 5km parkrun. As the chief executive of parkrun South Africa he's completed more than 400 runs and toured all over the world. I talked to Bruce about how his running journey began, helping Zola Budd complete the Comrades and the agony and ecstasy of taking on one of the world's toughest races...
Bob Emmerson: The grandfather of Northampton parkrun and multiple record breaker
21:14At 88 years old, Bob Emmerson is a popular and famed figure at Northampton parkrun. He's completed the 5km race a grand total of 399 times, with only the coronavirus pandemic preventing him from reaching the milestone mark of 400 already. Bob's running career goes far further back than parkrun though, with broken records and a garage full of old trainers signs of his achievements. I spoke to him about what makes him 'keep on running'...
Louise Hannam-Jones: Meeting 'The Wellness Curator'
18:45Like many of us Louise Hannam-Jones' life has changed during the last year. Coronavirus and the plethora of lockdowns it instigated got her thinking about her own mental health and wellbeing. As a result, she started her own Instagram account - The Wellness Curator. It has proved so popular Louise is now taking on clients to teach them how to be fitter, healthier and happier. Running is an integral part of that, providing - Louise says - an addictive structure and routine, as well as the base to start every day.
Karin Blak: Talking Therapy author on lockdown and being a 'Hill Demon'
24:55Qualified couples counsellor Karin Blak is the author of 'The Essential Companion to Talking Therapy' - a guide to what therapy is and how it works. With the Covid pandemic bringing fears of a mental health crises, Karin is keen to re-frame the discussion. Time to analyse and talk about our problems means, she says, this could be the chance to start a mental health revolution. One of the ways Karin looks after her own wellbeing is through running - including sprinting up hills with my Step Forward With Lewis group. I spoke to her about her book, lockdown and how TV doesn't always tell the truth about therapy... ========= Karin's website: www.karinblak.co.uk Karin's blogs: https://karink-blak.medium.com and https://psychologytoday.com/gb/blog/demystifying-therapy You can buy Talking Therapy on Amazon ========= The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Gareth Snelson: The man who decided to set up a parkrun before even running one
44:32Gareth Snelson is Mr Milton Keynes parkrun. But his journey to founding the event is not what you might expect. Already a keen runner, Gareth stumbled upon parkrun and decided it looked like the perfect thing to get people running together in the new city. Incredibly, though, he'd never previously taken part in the 5km event. That didn't stop him though - although those at parkrun HQ did suggest he tried one out himself before he took a plunge which, until Covid hit, saw hundreds and sometimes thousands of people turn up in MK every Saturday morning to take part. ========= The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Alan Hackett: Facing up to cancer, life in a wheelchair... and new challenges
21:26Alan Hackett has spent a significant chunk of his life running. His achievements include 24 hour runs, taking on the London to Brighton challenge and serving as chairman of Northampton Road Runners. Recent years have thrown a different set of challenges his way, but he's already using the skills and mindset he developed during ultra running to tackle them head on. After developing a back injury, Alan eventually found out he had cancer and the coronavirus pandemic means he is still waiting for an operation to remove a mass from his kidney. Now in a wheelchair, he has recently completed a fresh challenge to complete 100kms and help him lose weight in the process. I spoke to Alan about his life in running and how his health issues might slow him down, but they won't be stopping him... ========= The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Stephen Buck: Inspired to run - and write - by an orange
37:26Stephen Buck never intended to write a book about his experiences in the world of running. Then again, he didn't really plan to start running either. Once he did though he found a love for the sport that took him away from fears he would never amount to anything. The simple act of putting one foot in front of the other changed Stephen's life and gave him a new confidence. When a little boy offered him an orange at a race it not only encouraged him to complete it, but also gave him the inspiration to write a book about his experiences. This is Stephen's Running Tales story... ========= Stephen's book, 'Inspired By An Orange,' is written under the name S.I. Rolland ========= The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Dannii Levi: 'The thought of being out in the cold terrifies me'
32:35Dannii Levi has Raynaud's disease, a condition which results in reduced blood flow to people's fingers and toes. For Dannii, Raynaud's can result in extreme pain, in her becoming a prisoner inside her own home when it's really cold and can make running an impossible task. With the help of medication and the Scleroderma and Raynaud's UK charity. Dannii has learned vital methods to allow her to live - and run - more freely. This is Dannii's Running Tales story... ========= The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Shaun Lightman: 'When they sent us to the Mexico Olympics the papers were saying we could die'
48:32Race walker Shaun Lightman's incredible international career peaked when he represented Great Britain at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico. Competing in the 50kms walk, it was as challenging a race as it is possible to imagine. Press reports before the team left for Mexico suggested athletes might die due to the heat and altitude, once there Shaun found himself out of breath climbing the stairs and, when race day came, he battled extreme temperatures, raced along streets lined by armed soldiers and found himself passing competitors slumped exhausted at the side of the road. I spoke to Shaun about how he manged to keep going, his race walking career, how he got into the sport and what he makes of its popularity now... ----- Photography provided by Shaun Lightman and taken by Mark Easton ============ The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Shack Baker: The newbie who discovered how "mind-blowing" running can be
45:41Shack Baker wasn't traditionally a runner. In 2019, someone challenged him to take on a half marathon for charity. As with so many first time runners, it was a challenge that stretched him physically and mentally - and one which has changed the way he looks at the world. Shack's story is one everyone who has turned from relative couch potato to regular runner will immediately recognise. ============ The music in this podcast is: "Fearless First" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/