Run Up Talks: Training In Tahiti, Family Support and Pre-Marathon Prep with Lu Porter

Lu Porter is one of our incredible London Marathon runners this year. But her training plan has a unique twist. Lu works as a boat charterer, which means her training plan has faced some unique challenges. We caught up with her ahead of the big day to see how she’s been getting on.

I hear you’ve been training abroad?
I’m chartering on a sailing boat in Tahiti at the moment, so I’ll be back in England in a week and a half in time for the marathon.

That must make training difficult?
It’s been so interesting training for the marathon as we’ve been at sea for so long. But i’ve been on land for a month now so my programme is a bit more ‘condensed’. I’ve slowly been increasing my runs and doing one a week is allowing me to see how my body is feeling.

Have you trained for anything like this before?
I did the Barcelona Marathon last year. It was very spontaneous as I was only meant to be in Barcelona over the weekend. But after having a beer in a bar with a stranger who was doing the marathon, I went home, signed up and ran it a week later. I had to throw myself into it and overcome the many reasons why I couldn’t. But I saw an opportunity and I took it.

That’s incredible, have you always been a runner?
Running has always been a thing for me. I listen to my body and work with how it feels. I feel like running is a meditation for me. I know I’ll feel fantastic if I run around the block.

What made you choose to run the London Marathon?
For as long as I can remember it’s always been an idea in my head. For me it’s always about overcoming the personal challenge of the mental block and running. So when the opportunity came I made sure I would fly home for it.

Were you previously connected to The Change Foundation?
My uncle works with Alex Bassan. I’ve heard a bit and wanted to learn about the charity. At first there wasn’t a spot available, and we were out at sea with no internet when one day I checked my emails and saw an invite had been sitting in my inbox for weeks!

I’m sure your family will be happy to have you fly back, are they going to go and cheer you on?  
Last time I was home was January. I had a quick visit home for my grandfather’s memorial so this will be a nice positive celebration to come home to. All my family and friends are going to be there… my parents, brother, my cousin and some amazing friends. No doubt they will all help me cross the line by mile 26!

 Do you listen to any music, podcasts or audiobooks while you run?
I find that my pace is better when I don’t have music because I work with the rhythm of my body. But on the odd run that I do have music I love listening to Alice Cooper. On the race day I already know I’ll leave my phone and headphones behind.

Do you have a mental or physical preparations before a big race?
Fuelling the body is key and I like to be on my own before because I turn up to a race. Also having a banana, listening to some songs that make me calm and get into the running mode really gets my head down.

How has fundraising for the marathon been going?
I’ve started my page and people have already been donating. Once I’m home I hope people will keep supporting and I’m looking forward to reaching the £2000 target.  

Lastly, what does sport mean to you and how do you feel it impacts our society?

Sport is something that is special to so many people’s lives and it’s something that is accessible in so many different ways. I feel it brings people together whilst allowing them to achieve things they didn’t thing they could both mentally and physically. It only ever brings goodness to the world, which is an incredible thing.

To donate to Lu’s fundraising page, please head HERE.

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