25–26 Jan 2025 245 days to go! #RunShow

Shelby Williams

I have been a runner since childhood, with my mum telling me I ran before I walked.

I Captained my sports team at junior school and won my first running trophy at the age of 13. But like many girls, I gave it up, due to being body concious.

I found my love of running again many years later and started a journey into run leading and coaching so I could help others. I am now a qualified endurance running coach and leader for a local running group, that won the Kings Award for Voluntary Service in 2023.

My approach to running and coaching is inclusive and fun, whilst encouraging people to be the best they can be which is why I believe our club has maintained a large core group of runners who are on one hand at the competitive edge of running to the more recreational runner who enjoys running for the more social aspects.I am a Mental Health Ambassador for UK Athletics and recognise that people who have poor mental health may find the prospect of starting running or joining a group daunting. But if I can help break down those barriers through the right support, then running can help improve mental health.

I am also keen to encourage people with disabilities to take part in sport. I have a hidden disability myself, so I recognise how this can lead to social exclusion and as a Guide Runner I like to support those with a visual impairment to seek support so they can enjoy running to.

Over the years I have enjoyed running around the world including in London as one of the first runners to cross the finish line as part of the Olympics in 2012; and I have run in Las Vegas, Paris, New York and Canada.

In 2023 I took part in my first Ultra at the age of 52 and I am now looking for other running challenges.

I still have many running goals to achieve and I don’t believe age should be a barrier to achieving these, although I am more conscious of a good diet, good strength and conditioning routine and working with a quality sports therapist!.