Q&A with Helen Gaunt
I started running when a friend suggested we do a Race For Life 5k, it went a bit better than expected with a podium finish! I did a few more races then joined a London running club, Serpentine RC where I met my husband and made lots of lasting friends.
Marathon has got to be my favourite, you don’t get to run them very often so it’s a really special distance. I always felt more comfortable with half marathon and marathon but in the past year the buzz of the 5k and 10k has grown on me.
Plan your pace realistically and stick to it! Don’t be tempted to go out too fast. The marathon where I got a negative split was the one where I was super disciplined. Also practice your fuelling and hydration, getting it right is critical!
Bronze in the UK and England Champs at London Marathon 2023 was amazing. And total surprise to finish 1st W40 in the World Marathon Majors 2022 and win the Great Run Bristol 10k outright, my first England Vest opportunity.
I saw Paula Radcliffe’s record breaking London marathon on TV, my dad was a talented runner and was avidly following it. I didn’t get into running until my 30s but read her book and I’m lucky enough to have met her in person!
I believe I can cut my marathon down further, I’m all about the marathon, it’s a magic distance. I’d like to get some PBs in the shorter distances along the way and target another England vest - such an honour to run for your country.
Before becoming a mother and launching my personal training and run coaching business I worked in journalism, marketing and PR including three years as an editor at the Financial Times in London on their banking magazines.
I’m a determined person and when I have a goal I will stick to it even in the face of challenge. It’s about staying focused and thinking on your feet so you can deal with the unexpected, not letting anything at all phase you.
I really did my homework about nutrition when I got into running and sampled this product at a London marathon expo. In my build up to London I was all about those one-percenters, I bought the juice and knocked back a Beet It shot pre-race!
I drink Beet It the week before key races then take a shot on the day. I know the science - dietary nitrate significantly reduces the oxygen cost of exercise and delays onset of fatigue, what’s not to like! I believe in it, and it tastes good!