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Marathon Nan Alyson Winn

by Love Wrexham Magazine
Alyson Winn Marathon Nan - Feature

When Alyson Winn decided to get fit, there was just no stopping her. She recently took on her first 30-mile trail run, raising money for Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith children’s hospices.

The HOWUM 30

Alyson, from Froncysyllte, near Chirk, took on “The HOWUM 30” (the Pegasus Heart of Wales Ultra Marathon) on 4th May. The determined grandmother tested herself to the limit on this incredible 30-mile mid-Wales trail run. It’s a challenge that she could never have dreamt of doing when she first took up running just seven years ago.

Alyson is a dedicated fundraiser who has supported Hope House events, including the Llangollen Canal Walk and Dark Runs, which she’s enjoyed participating in with grandsons Curtis, Leighton, and Liam.

She says: “It’s such a fantastic charity which supports local families caring for a child with a life-threatening condition or whose child has died. I have friends whose families have been helped and supported so much at such a difficult time.”

Alyson says she first started running in a bid to be healthier.

Alyson Winn Marathon Nan - Webpost 1
Alyson Winn Marathon Nan

“I took up running before my 60th birthday. Sadly, some of my close friends had recently died, and I became very aware that I was unfit, overweight and a smoker. The only exercise I did was walking the dog,” she admits. “I decided to do something about it, so I gave up smoking, joined a slimming club, then I signed up for ‘Couch to 5k’. My family thought it was funny and didn’t believe me at first.

“But I loved it. I took part in 5ks, then 10ks. It escalated quickly and I made new running friends. It was really sociable.”

Sharon Cowley

Alyson’s runs gradually became longer until this year when she signed up for an ultra-marathon.

Before the run, she said, “Now that I’m doing 30 miles, people aren’t so keen to join me on my longer runs. Though running buddy and long-term Hope House supporter Sharon Cowley has joined me on some of my training runs. I also enjoy training on my own, at my own pace, taking in the scenery and listening to nature.”

Alyson has more spare time to train after having recently retired from careers as a nurse and a fundraiser. She says she’s lucky to live near some beautiful canal walks and countryside and has enjoyed training. She’s been clocking up some long weekend runs as well as shorter mid-week runs, swims, and gym sessions. The secret to long trail runs is to be prepared, she says.

“I like lots of little snacks and water. Jam butties are good! Also, spare clothes in case it’s wet and sun cream in case it’s hot.”

Alyson booked herself a bed and breakfast for the weekend and was looking forward to pizza and a bath after she crossed the finish line.

“I’m in a slimming club so I’m not really meant to have pizza, but I think I’ll deserve it after that,” she said.

Alyson Winn Marathon Nan - Webpost 2
Alyson Winn Marathon Nan

Chest Infection

A chest infection temporarily halted her training, but she got back on track and didn’t let anything stop her.

I’m very ploddy. It’s about completing the route in one piece, not about winning any races,” she said. “This event has no cut-off so there’s no pressure to complete it in a certain time. This suits me as it’s more inclusive, and it’s OK if I choose to walk up some of the hills.”

Alyson hoped to finish in under 10 hours, if possible, and to raise more than £300.

“I like a challenge, but I’m not obsessed with being fast or being on a podium. It’s about the personal challenge. When I first started running, I signed up for every local run going. My grandson was impressed with all my medals. I remember him saying: ‘You must be really good to have all those medals, granny‘.

“He was a bit disappointed to hear they were just for taking part. I’m happy to run at my own pace and keep on plodding. I’ve already signed up for my second ultra-marathon in September. I love running with friends or on my own, and am extra motivated by the kind people who are sponsoring me, too. Thank you!”

Click here to sponsor Alyson.

Visit hopehouse.org.uk for the latest news and information from Hope House/Tŷ Gobaith Children’s Hospices.

We hope you enjoyed reading “Marathon Nan Alyson Winn”. Click here to read more of our charity articles.

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