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  • Writer's pictureKarla

Meet the runner - Charlie Hoskins

Charlie and I do track together on Tuesday. She has a turn of speed similar to a cheetah - something my marathon legs envy quite a lot. She told me about her running, managing niggles and finding 'me' time.

I’m a Respiratory Physiotherapist and mum. I run for Winchester and District AC and my coach is David Vosser.

I started running at a very young age with my dad. I think in my first race I was around 7 – it was a 5 mile fun run. I used to run with my dad on a Saturday morning and when I was 11 I joined a running club (Cambridge and Coleridge).

My races before lockdown were the final Hampshire cross country league races, the English National cross-country Championships in Nottingham and the CC6 league (a series of off-road races in Hampshire).

I normally train Tuesday and Thursday with my running club – short and long interval sessions. On Wednesdays I do a very slow recovery run of about 5 miles and then at the weekend I either race or a do a longer run (6 or 7 miles). Normally my weekly mileage is 20-25 miles. I also cycle once a week and do a Body Balance class.

My favourite session is 300m repetitions on the track or short hills.

I’m really missing training with Winchester and District AC and seeing friends. I’m also really missing racing especially the track season. I am still running the same amount, if not a bit more, and trying to do 2 hard sessions a week and some virtual races but I find virtual racing difficult. I’ve had to do my recovery runs with my kids on their bikes which often means breaks for them to stop and refuel.

I’m still working and it’s intense as you can imagine. On top of that home schooling is the hardest thing EVER!!!!!! I get about 1 hour maximum of chill time for myself in the evening if I am very lucky. At the moment my life is crazy busy we’ve just got a very gorgeous puppy too so so I am pretty tired overall!

My best ever performance was winning the Cambridge County Cross-country Championships in 1998 and running for British universities in the same year. These days, it’s probably being 1st veteran at Hampshire Cross-country League race in Popham.

My worst ever performance was at the Inter-county Cross-Country races in 1999. I ended up pulling out halfway through as I just could not race, my legs felt like treacle and I was going backwards – nothing physically wrong with me but I had recently split with a long term boyfriend. I learnt that I’m a runner who is very much affected by how I am mentally feeling as well as how physically fit I am!?

My favourite piece of kit is an ultra-lightweight vest from M&S for hot summer running!

I loved reading This Mum Runs by Jo Pavey.

I lost my running mojo for quite a few years – I stopped racing in the summer of 2000 and didn’t properly race again until 2015. I ran but just to keep fit but not with a club and I didn’t race.

After having my daughter I felt I needed to get some ‘me time’ back so I did Race for Life and challenged myself to do it in 25mins which I managed. Then I got hooked again and joined WADAC, more for the social aspect. Through that I got back into racing.

I don’t follow a special diet. When I was younger I didn’t eat enough for the amount of training I was doing, got a stress fracture and had no periods so now I just concentrate on making sure I am getting enough fuel for my training. I do eat relatively healthily – I have meat or fish and vegetables at most meals, and I try to make everything from scratch. I don’t really eat any takeaways. I also try not to eat too much sugary stuff but if I need it, I eat it. I love crisps and crackers with an inch of butter on top. The only supplement I take is Feroglobin.

Basically, I love to run fast and will push myself to my limits. I love going for a jog but I am only truly happy when I have raced to the point of collapse! Never that far, 😉 just fast.

I love watersports – surfing and windsurfing.

I think these days I always have a few niggles on the go. My hamstrings are always on the verge of injury – I’m managing those by strengthening my glutes. Sometimes my back flares up on right – I’m managing that with stretches and Body Balance. And my left knee twinges – again that’s foam rolling and glute work.

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