Samantha Harrison has a rare and pretty inspirational story for anyone looking to take up a sport, this 24 year old from Nottinghamshire only took up running a year ago and has already won a load of 10k’s and half marathons! Samantha only started taking running seriously in September 2018 when she entered her first race, the Nottingham Robin Hood half marathon, she had little experience in running nor preparation for the race but ended up doing really well, and so decided to joined a local running club. Fast forward one year and Samantha is now an elite level athlete who wants to qualify for the British Athletics Team in 2020!
To progress even further she wants to do altitude training for one month at an altitude training camp at either flagstaff in the USA, or Kenya, East Africa. As she don’t have any sponsorship or funding for this, she has set up an athlete fundraising page on PledgeSports, you can find out more and support Samantha here.
It’s rare to here stories where an athletes progress is this rapid so we caught up with Samantha to delve a little deeper, enjoy!
Were you sporty as a kid?
- Yes, I used to love being active and playing sports, not necessarily running, in fact I hated running especially doing cross country in school, I would always come up with an excuse to not do it. I used to enjoy playing football, tennis and cycling mainly.
What sports did you play when you was younger?
- I mainly played football and used to play for a local team and for school. I used to also ride my bike every day after school when I was younger. When I hit around 19, I then started going to the gym and doing cross training, rowing and fitness classes.
How and when did you decide to take up running?
I was going through quite a stressful and tough time in my life back in 2018 (personal reasons) and I wanted something to focus on and a challenge to keep my mind distracted, so I decided to enter my first half marathon which was the Nottingham Robin hood half marathon, in Sep 2018 and I started preparing for this early August time.
What’s your favourite thing about running?
- I have a number of favourite things with what I love about running, its hard to think of just one thing. I love the love and support from others in the running community and meeting new people in the sport, the mental challenge and focus it gives you and the buzz it provides you with when you cross that finish line after achieving something special from your hard work and commitment.
What’s your least favourite thing about running?
- My least favourite thing about running is that it’s very much a solo sport and when you’re having a low day it can be very hard to motivate yourself at times.
Do you try to specialise in one distance or vary it?
- With still being new to running and only my first full season this year, me and my coach are still trying to find out what my main event is and what to focus on the most. My main three events are half marathons, 10k and 5k which is what we are focusing on for now and in the future will narrow it down to one or two events once we have worked out what are my strongest events.
How many races did you win in 2019?
- Nottingham XC county champion.
- Leicestershire Half marathon Winner
- Winner of the Nottingham Half Christmas Marathon
- Nottingham IKano half marathon winner
- 2nd Place in Leicester 10K
- Wilne 10K winner
- Newark Half marathon winner
- 4th British lady (11th) overall in The Great North Run
- 5th place in Leeds Abbey Dash (my first race representing England and came 1st place in the England team event)
- Telford 10K Female Winner and course record holder 2019.
What’s your favourite running gear?
- Favourite running gear has to be … Nike practically all the training gear I own is Nike!
Favourite pre and post running snack?
- Favourite pre snack is definitely porridge oats, or peanut butter snack bar find this a great source of energy.
What are your aims for 2020?
- My aims for 2020 are to qualify for the World Half Marathon championships in March 2020. That is my main focus for now. Then it will be to qualify for the British championships in summer.
As you can see, Samantha has made stratospheric progress as an athlete in the space of one year, she is passionate about what she does and great on relaying this to her followers. We think this girl will go very far and would make a great brand ambassador for a sports brand!
Follow Samantha on – Instagram
Support her fundraising campaign – PledgeSports
For more reading on Running:
- The mental and physical benefits of running
- The difference between fitness and endurance
- Trail running V Road running
- Choosing the right running shoe for the right surface
- How different running surfaces affect the body
PledgeSports is the global leader in crowdfunding & sponsorship for sport.
Are you or someone you know athlete that need help get back in action after surgery or injury please put them in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.pledgesports.org and hit “Create A Campaign” to start raising money today!