TOTAL COMMITMENT: Biggenden's Stephanie Whitaker will take part in the New York Marathon on Sunday.
TOTAL COMMITMENT: Biggenden's Stephanie Whitaker will take part in the New York Marathon on Sunday. contributed

Big race in the Big Apple

Running: Stephanie Whitaker is taking time off between Biggenden cattle sales to run the New York City Marathon.

She has already run the Sydney marathon last year so New York will be her second such event.

"With 70,000 runners, it is going to be massive," she said.

"In New York I am aiming at a time of a four hours 30 minutes finish. At least it will be cooler over there.

"In Sydney I ran four hours 37 minutes."

Whitaker said the 42.4km New York course runs through the five boroughs of the city before finishing in Central Park.

"It really is the best way to see the place," she said.

She is well-prepared for the race.

Whitaker has been getting up at 4am to train four times a week.

"You just have to make time in your busy lifestyle to train," she said.

"I do run when it is drizzling but, when it's pouring, I am a bit of a wuss."

 

Stephanie Whitaker with Coalstoun Lakes runners Kim Corfield, Nicole Gibbs and Michelle Seabrook.
Stephanie Whitaker with Coalstoun Lakes runners Kim Corfield, Nicole Gibbs and Michelle Seabrook.

In preparation for New York, Whitaker has undertaken a 32km run.

"Plus there have been lots of laps around Biggenden covering the dump road and the saleyards area," she said.

Hydration vests have been banned since Boston, but Whitaker carries jells and snacks on her.

"This is what I have trained on so I don't tend to try anything new," she said.

Asked about after-effects from running, Whitaker said after the Sydney marathon her legs were a bit stiff.

"But walking around sightseeing tends to loosen them up," she said.

Whitaker runs more for recreation than competition.

"I run to enjoy myself," she said.

Whitaker began running three to four years ago.

She decided to take up the sport when Coalstoun Lakes runner Nic Gibbs posted a challenge on Facebook to help her train for an event.

"Also at that time it hadn't rained, the cattle market was affected and clients were ringing up in tears," she said.

"I have found running is a good way to manage stress."

 

Stephanie Whitaker keeps a smile on her face during an earlier race.
Stephanie Whitaker keeps a smile on her face during an earlier race. Contributed

Asked who inspired her, Whitaker said there were a few but for different reasons.

She said her coach in New South Wales shared a Facebook page featuring inspiring people.

"One of those runners is a diabetic who took up running for her health," she said.

"Even though she comes last in races, her determination keeps her going.

"She now does eight to nine marathons a year.

"That is inspiring, as are young mothers who juggle their time to run."

Whitaker said a few events were left on her to-run list, including the London marathon and the Ultra Trail Australian.



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