"I started running last year, at the age of 50, to support my mental health and to help with stress. Initially I used the NHS couch to 5k app and ran in places where I couldn't be seen! As my confidence grew I joined my local Parkrun. This was something that I had wanted to do for a long time, but was nervous of running in public and being the last to finish. I soon discovered there was no reason to be nervous, the people at Parkrun are supportive and friendly and there were plenty of 'women of a certain age'. I have now gone on to run the Luton 10k and hope to run a half-marathon later this year.
I think that lots of 'older' women are put off running as they consider it to be too difficult. I want to make it clear that it is not about how fast or how far you can go but the fact that you have gone outside and you have made an effort. I am passionate about supporting women and about promoting good mental health. I want to put the message out there that it is OK to talk about our mental health and that there are things we can do to help ourselves."