Sunday, 27th September 2020

Woman conducts annual ritual of signing up for half-marathon she won't actually do

FOR the third year in a row a woman has paid the entry fee for a half-marathon she will not actually run. 

Francesca Johnson, aged 32, has signed up to run the Northamptonshire half-marathon with the best of intentions but, as previously, expects to find her training time taken up with shopping for the right jogging pants and eating crisps.

She said: “Nobody can take my achievement away from me. Least of all the race organisers who’ve never even met me.

“I’ve estimated a sub-two-hour finish time, I’m using the tote bag, I’ve compiled a motivational playlist, and I’ve got the sponsorship form in my desk drawer along with last year’s and the year before’s. Running it’s the least of it.

“In 2017 I couldn’t unfortunately turn up on the day because of emotional issues, and in 2018 I was going to run but I’d strained an ankle ligament driving the car, so it’s not like I haven’t got solid excuses.

“And also there’s the weather. And work. So arguably I’ve actually made more effort than whoever won, who really should be ashamed of themselves.”

She added: “I’ve kept all my race numbers to remind myself how close I’ve come. I’ve got a really good view of them from the big armchair.”