No. 7: 60 Seconds with Harrier Emma Mitchell

This morning an athlete who although only six months a Harrier has promoted the Clonliffe name racing in the club colours and is already rewriting the club record books it’s International athlete Emma Mitchell.

Bio: 26 Years Old Long Distance Runner

What age did you take up the sport of athletics and why? 14/15 Years Old I always loved running, but up until aged 14/15 I played a lot of different sports. Focusing on running from then on wasn’t a difficult decision as I loved the fact that the training I done, would be reflected in my performances. So the harder I trained, the better I got. I guess with team sports its not just about your performance it’s the whole teams – so probably the fact athletics is quite an individual sport played a big factor.

When and why did you join Clonliffe Harriers? September 2019 And I am so glad I joined! I have been made very welcome by everyone!

What is your favourite training workout? 20x400m or Lots and Lots of 1000m Reps on the Track!

And your least favourite? Can’t say I have a least favourite – There’s certainly some hurt more than others!

What’s your favourite race / athletics meet? Highgate Harriers Night of 10,000m in London, National Championships, Armagh International 3k Road Race

What is your most cherished or proudest moment in athletics? (as athlete and/or coach) May 2017 – Highgate Harriers Night of 10,000m PB’s. It was my first 10,000m track race and I had no idea what to expect! It was probably the first time I’d ever really achieved my coach’s expectations in that we wanted the 2018 Commonwealth Games Qualifying time and that one race would probably be the only opportunity we would have to achieve the standard. The fact that the atmosphere is like no other track meet – with the crowd drinking beer in lane three the whole way round the track – it was the perfect debut 10,000m track race! It was lovely to have my coach there, my mum, Ronnie O’Sullivan and a host of other Irish over supporting – definitely made it even more special!

What was your worst injury – and how did you get over it? I think any injury you get always seems to be the worst at the time – but definitely having a string of injuries at the end of 2018 and into 2019 was difficult to deal, especially one after another. Patience is Key! And believing that you will train again and you will race again – often when injured you can’t imagine being able to train or compete like before.

(For a coach or seasoned athlete) What piece of advice would you give an aspiring athlete? Always find at least one positive to take from every performance or even a training session. Sometimes you will not always achieve the outcome you hoped for – but finding a positive and bringing that forward into your training and next competition helps you progress with a positive attitude. Do you have any memorable or funny story from

Clonliffe Harriers that you could share? (the censorship board may review!) Not as yet! I’m still a newbie but I will be sure to tell if I encounter any funny stories!!

What’s your favourite meal? A. For competition B. Outside competition A. Porridge or Pasta B. Pizza

Who is your sporting ‘hero’? (athletics or other) Sonia O’Sullivan

What’s your favourite…? A. Film B. Song or Album C. Book C. Hard to Choose – Last book I read was The Way of the Runner by Adharanand Finn which was good!

What’s your favourite holiday destination? Anywhere Hot and Sunny!

What’s your favourite hobby / activity outside athletics? Reading. And Drinking Coffee!

How would your non-athlete friends describe you? (in 3 words) Runner Successful Hard working

What is your next running / athletics goal? (whenever normality returns!) World Half Marathon Championships in October Autumn Marathon

How are you motivating yourself to continue training at these difficult times? Keeping my normal routine to the best I can. And having a positive attitude, in that it’s an opportunity to get a block of training in before competing again and also having extra time to focus on rest, recovery and all the little things!

Emma Mitchell wins the North Ireland 10k Road Championships in Bangor