We sit down for a chat with Aileen Melody who has been running fantastically for the past few seasons.

When did you join Sportsworld?
Around 1998 I came down for the summer and trained as part of the Meet & Train group for the Womens Mini Marathon and didn’t come back until the following year. At that time you could come and just train for the Mini. I did the same the following year and then at the end Paddy handed me a form and said why don’t you join and so began my adventure with Sportsworld Running Club.

Where do you work?
ESB I sometimes run on an ESB team in the BHAA races
What is your favourite club session?. In the summer I love any of the track sessions – they are hard but you feel great after them. In the Winter my favourite session is the Hills and Sprints

What is your favorite race distance?
“It used to be the shorter distances but now as I am getting older I like the longer distances more, The Half Marathon and dare I say it I enjoyed my last Marathon although I still like the shorter cross country races too

What is your favorite meal before a big race? If it is in the morning I get up about 2 hours before and have my version of porridge. If it is an evening race probably pasta for lunch!

My Favourite place to train/compete is?
I love training and competing in Lanzarote but at home it is probably the track or the Phoenix Park

What is your target for the next year?
I am entering a new age category next year so want to do well in that maybe take the odd medal. Team or individual any colour…….

What is your best Sportsworld memory?
“I have a lot of great memories with Sportsworld – running the New York Marathon and the after celebrations with my Sportsworld Pals. Winning most improved athlete club award….. Way back winning National Masters T&F Bronze & Silver relay medals and us all trying to squeeze on the podium! The opening of our Clubhouse…. there are so many!”

What international events have you ran?
New York Marathon, Berlin Half Marathons, 10K’s as part of the Poppy Marathon festival in Amiens in France and of course I have taken part in quite a few Lanzarote running challenges.

How/When did you start your adventure with running?
As I was saying when came down to Sportsworld and trained as part of the meet & train and when Paddy gave me the form and I put in my first winters training I was hooked after that! I hope this adventure continues for a long time to come!

Tell us about your PB’s / What is your biggest achievement?
Last year at the start of 2014 after a few lean years I decided to really give my training a good go as late in the year I was going to run the New York Marathon. Training went well and I really got a great buzz out of racing. I started to get PB’s in my 10K, 10 mile and two PB’s in the half marathon but the icing on the cake was a PB in the marathon in New York even though the weather conditions weren’t good with high winds and everyone telling me not to expect a good time. For others it may not seem a great time but for me it was wonderful.

How often do you run / What is your typical weekly mileage?
I try to run between 5 to 6 days if I can but always at least 4 days a week with a weekly mileage at the moment of between 20 and 30 miles. This would be a little more when half marathon and marathon training
What would you say is the best thing about being in a Running Club? The social aspect of it, the training with others and being part of a team. Competing as part of a team and representing the club is brilliant. Also all the friends I have made.

Why is running important to you?
Running is important to me as one it keeps me healthy, it also keeps me sane when you have a bad day and go out for a run by the time you are finished the day doesn’t seem so bad after all! It also gives me a great sense of achievement and makes me feel like I can do anything I set my mind to!

Who is the person in the club who inspires/drives to run better?
Since I have joined the club there have been a number of people at different times who have inspired me and driven me to try to run better but there have been a couple of constants Emily our club coach who is a great mentor to all club members encouraging us always to strive for our best. She is also a great support when things aren’t going so well. My other constant who drives me on is my hubbie Nick ( also a club member a non-runner but a number one cheerleader in the club) He pushes me to get out and train and puts up with my pre race jitters/moods and makes me feel great when I have a good race and helps me shrug it off and look forward when I have a bad race.

Do you do any cross training / other sports on a regular basis?
I used to do Pilates and keep promising myself I will get back to that but I do a weekly boxing training circuit class to help my core and build strength pounding those bags can be another great stress reliever!