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‘I don’t know whether to laugh or cry’ - Running queen completes 300th marathon

PUBLISHED: 13:26 13 September 2020 | UPDATED: 13:50 13 September 2020

Melanie Sturman after completing her 300th marathon in Milton Keynes on Saturday. Picture: Helen Marshall

Melanie Sturman after completing her 300th marathon in Milton Keynes on Saturday. Picture: Helen Marshall

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Norfolk’s very own running queen Melanie Sturman has completed her 300th marathon, joining an exclusive group of less than 1,000 people worldwide to do so.

Melanie Sturman a runner who has helped raise over £8600 for different charities. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMANMelanie Sturman a runner who has helped raise over £8600 for different charities. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Ms Sturman completed the challenge during a weekend which saw her running three consecutive marathons in order to make sure qualified for the prestigious World Mega Marathon ranking.

The achievement not only marked an impressive mileage but also the end of a roller coaster few months which saw coronavirus prevent Ms Sturman from getting married, put a halt on 50th birthday celebrations and cast doubt on whether she would be able to complete her marathon challenge at all.

The Thetford nurse had hoped to complete her 300th marathon before she turned 50, but when lockdown put a stop to events she put plans on hold. Then, went restrictions were eased she rescheduled to October and was back on track that was until new rules on social gatherings due to come into place in England from September 14 were announced.

So, in a last minute bid to complete her challenge Ms Sturman rescheduled and bought races forward.

Nurse and marathon runner, Melanie Sturman completed her 300th marathon on Saturday September 12. Photo: Melanie SturmanNurse and marathon runner, Melanie Sturman completed her 300th marathon on Saturday September 12. Photo: Melanie Sturman

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Speaking after completing her 300th race on Saturday she said felt a mixture of emotions: “I don’t know what to think really, should I cry, should I be happy? It’s all a bit of a surprise because I wasn’t meant to complete it this week.

“It’s been such an emotional journey, it’s been horrendous, when coronavirus reared its ugly head it put a stop to everything.

“I’m was a mess and with all the new restrictions, I thought, I’m going to be stuck on 299, and I didn’t think I could with it emotionally,” she said.

Ms Sturman, who aside for working for the NHS during the pandemic has also helped raise thousands of pounds for charity said she celebrated her achievement with a “cheeky beer”.

She said: “It’s all very different because normally when runners achieve a mile stone, we normally bring cake, share drinks and have a bit of a social event, but coronavirus means we’re not allowed to do any of that.

“That’s the hardest bit because normally everyone wants to give you a hung it’s just really weird [without that].”


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