After struggling with weight issues, Renfrew’s Lisa Reid believes running has changed her life.
Having decided to try out her first ever gentle jog only 18 months ago, she is now gearing up for her second Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run this year.
Reid signed up for the Bank of Scotland’s Community Challenge, which encourages Scotland to get active by aiming to recruit one runner from each of the 32 local authorities in Scotland to take on a ‘10 week to 10k’ running challenge.
Representing Renfrewshire with a personalised training programme created by an expert coach to help in the weeks leading up to the run on September 30, Lisa claimed she’s fitter than she ever thought she could be.
“I only started running last January,” said the 38-year-old mum of three, who took part in the Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run for the first-time last year.
“A friend suggested running to me last year because I was trying to lose weight, and I joined Slimming World at the same time, and it’s been a gradual process from there.
Photo: Lisa Reid
“I’ve lost over five stone and I’ve been doing the running and really enjoying it, I’ve been doing longer distances and I’ve got a great sense of achievement from it.
“My life has really changed in the past 18 months, I couldn’t run for the bus! So, I started running with a friend and we encouraged each other and then I just got into it.
“For me, it’s massively helped, and I certainly don’t think I’d be as healthy as I am without running.
“A couple of years ago I couldn’t lose weight, I could never run, I was always that one that stood at the back of the P.E. classes and didn’t do any exercise, whenever it was cross country I would hide!
“So, when I think about being able to do 10k runs, I thought if I could help someone else do it and provide those words of encouragement then that would be great, that’s why I applied for it.
“It’s been really good to do the training plan, I was a bit dubious at the start because I wondered if I could manage that, but it’s been really helpful and it’s good to see the different paces that you can run at and how that makes a difference to your overall time.”
Not only has the Community Challenge helped Lisa personally, but she believes the programme has the power to inspire others who are in similar positions as she was last year.
“The scheme is really important,” added Lisa. “I think that’s the reason I started, I had this issue with my weight and someone suggested running.
“I saw the Bank of Scotland advertising it and I thought if I can do that I don’t care how long it takes me, if I could run every step of the way just think how that would make me feel, I could say I completed a 10k, it’s a massive achievement for me.
“It’s a great run and it certainly does encourage everyone to do it no matter of your fitness, it encourages everybody from every walk of life and every level of fitness.
“There’s always someone running that it may be a massive challenge for, they could be in real difficulty but just looking around and see what everybody else is doing and feeling part of it and knowing you’re making a difference or helping someone who is struggling, it’s great.
“It’s always really busy, there’s loads of people out and about on the streets cheering you on, so if you can enjoy that it’s a great feeling.”
Bank of Scotland is celebrating its 10th year as proud partner of the Great Scottish Run and for the second-year running will support runners from communities across Scotland on their 10 weeks to 10k challenge in the Bank of Scotland Community Challenge. For more information, visit greatscottishrun.com/community-challenge.