1st December 2018 Demolish – Clarence Valley, NSW


60 Seconds with Fiona Sykes

My running partner, Maxi

My running partner, Maxi

When you think of Army you generally think super fit people. So it was no surprise to see Captain Fiona Sykes register for the 11km distance in the Great Ocean Trail run in Anglesea on April 14th, as part of the Adventurethon Demolish weekend. Fiona’s job in the Army is a Transport Officer, at 1 Combat Services Support Battalion based in Darwin. The run is perfect timing, coinciding with returning to Australia from a 6 month deployment in the Middle East (Fiona is heading to Geelong during a leave to visit family).

Fiona says, “I saw the Great Ocean Trail run on Facebook. I was planning to visit my family in Geelong during my leave from the Army and I thought it sounded like a great opportunity to get in some trail running and also run through a part of Victoria that I have never run through before, despite living in Geelong for 10 years'”

“Being in the army we do have to keep fit and have regular fitness tests which involve running. We do PT (Physical Training) nearly every day as part of our work day in the Army, the sessions vary from weights circuits, running sessions, battle PT including pack marching and stores carry, and pool sessions. I enjoy these sessions and find it motivating exercising as part of a group (and being paid to do it!)”

Doing some core training with my neice Eva

Doing some core training with my niece Eva

“At the moment I do a specific running session three times a week (in addition to work PT sessions). I am training for a Half Marathon also, so my training has focused on a speed/interval session, a tempo run and a long run which adds up to around 30km per week. The longest distance I have run is 26km, so I am looking forward to the 11km Great Ocean Trail Run.

Captain Fiona Sykes“I am lucky that my job includes time for training, but I also train in my own time before or after work. Sometimes that involves very early mornings, however living in Darwin that is usually the best time to train before it gets too hot or humidity.”

The Great Ocean Trail Run has two distance options to choose from – 11km and 18km, and covers some of the best bits of the Anglesea coastline. This fast, flowy course  takes you along Angleseas’ Mountain bike tracks – specifically made to flow with the landscape, snaking their way along contours of the landscapes to take you on a journey not just from A to B but over, through and around features that really make the journey super fun!

Fiona adds, “To get started in running, look out for local running clubs. They usually have a beginners program or groups for different abilities. It’s much more motivating running with a group of people. Set a realistic goal to aim for. If you have just started running maybe pick a 5km fun run that is 6 months away, this will give your training some focus and you will feel great when you complete it!”

What’s your most valuable running item? “My Bluetooth headphones! No more messy cords and they connect to music from my watch, this has made long runs much more interesting and enjoyable!”

If you would like to join us for the Great Ocean Trail Run April 14, there is still a small amount of time for you to get a rego in. Check out more info at http://adventurethon.com.au/events/anglesea/great-ocean-trail-run-stage-3/