Charlotte Purdue achieves third-fastest ever British women’s marathon time

Finishing the Virgin Money London Marathon in an astonishing 2.25:38.


Charlotte Purdue finished 10th at yesterday’s Virgin Money London Marathon. She was the first British woman, and achieved the third-fastest ever British women’s marathon time. She is the 2019 and 2018 winner of The Vitality Big Half. She holds the UK junior record for the 10,000m with a time of 32 minutes 36 seconds and represented Great Britain in the Marathon at the 2017 IAAF World Championships finishing in 2:29:48.

What would a peak week of Training before a marathon look like for you?

My training before a marathon usually starts about 12 weeks out before the race. I do between 110 – 120 miles per week. Usually 2 interval sessions, one long run and then in-between this lots of easy running – twice a day and varying in distances.

How do you make sure you recover between session?

In between sessions I make sure I stay off my feet. I usually take this time to do other things such as get sports massage, stretching and working on my coaching business Purdue Performance.

Is there a training session that you particularly love or hate in the build up to a marathon?

The long runs are really hard because we are always doing them on tired legs from the week of training. I find the shorter sessions tough in marathon training because my legs are always so tired from the miles that trying to run a quick pace is challenging!

What do you like to eat before a race or big run?

I like to eat oats with peanut butter, banana and honey. I always have a couple of Revvies caffeine strips before a run and then during a big run I drink SIS hydro fuel. I keep this routine the same for training and racing.

Is there anything you do to train your mind for racing? Or any mantras that you use?

Not really. I find that the training we do is enough for mental training for a race. I think it helps because you know you’ve done all the hard work in training – the race is the fun part for me!

How do you deal with pre-race nerves?

I don’t really get nervous before races to be honest. I am more focusing on getting through the big training blocks that when the races come around it’s about putting the hard work into practise!

How do you deal with bad training sessions or disappointing races?

There are always bad training sessions in a marathon block. Mainly because you are tired from the previous weeks/months. I always remind myself that it’s about looking at the whole picture and not about a specific day or week. If you have a disappointing race then it’s good to get back out there and find another focus.

What’s the biggest lesson that running has taught you?

Resilience and learning to listen to my body.

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