Dr. Katharine Ganly - Endurance Runner - Spartathlon 2017, Dragons Back 2017, Grand Union Canal Race


Renata Chlumska  - Adventure athlete who became the first Swedish and Czech woman to climb Mount Everest and in 2005 did a circumnavigate of the lower 48 States of the United States by her own power.

Kat is a keen endurance runner and has undertaken many of the Toughest Endurance Races - from running across the Sahara Desert in Morocco while competing in the Marathon des Sables. Or challenging her body to take on 4, 100 miler races in the UK - which is known as the Centurion “Grand Slam” which she did in 2014 and placed as first female.

Every year since Kat has looked to take on a new running challenge which would test her from the Dragons Back race in 2015 - where she got her first DNF, to taking on the Grand Union Canal Race race in 2016 -where she placed 2nd female.

Not to be deterred by her DNF in 2015, Kat took onboard the key lessons she needed to work on, trained hard and heading back to face the race in 2017, where she finished with a smile on her face.

With her 100 mile race times, Kat qualified for the Spartathlon ballot in 2017. When her name was pulled out the hat she was in shock, she didn’t think she’d be taking on the 250km timed race from Athens to Sparta quite so soon!

The race takes place in the September of every year in Greece. It is one of the most challenging ultra-distance races plus it has a very unique history.

Kat will be sharing more about her different ultra races, how she got into the world of ultra running, the lessons she has learned along the way, how she trains, what she eats to fuel her challenges as well as talking in detail about her mindset, staying resilient and overcoming setbacks and failure.

There is also a Tough Girl Extra BONUS episode with Kat - where she will be sharing more about her life as an Antarctic Doctor (Oct 2019- March 2021 - South Georgia, Bird Island and RRS James Clark Ross) - Make sure you hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. This goes live at 11am TODAY!!

New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time.

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Listen to Dr. Katharine Now!

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Show notes

  • Her first experience of running

  • Deciding to enter the 2010 Brighton Marathon

  • Hearing about the 2013 Marathon des Sables

  • Why she decided to enter…

  • Deciding to treat herself as a gradation present

  • Wanting to take on a 100 mile single day race

  • Discovering the Centurion Grand Slam Event (4 - 100 mile races in a calendar year)

  • Making friends in the long distance running community

  • The Dragons Back Race 2015

  • Dealing with failure and having her first DNF

  • Turning failure into a challenge

  • Deciding to run the Dragons Back Race in 2017

  • The Grand Union Canal Race (GUCR), UK, Birmingham to London, 148 miles

  • Being able to enter the ballet for the Spartathlon Race

  • What’s involved in the Spartathlon Race and why it’s so hard

  • Getting a trainer and following a training plan while working full time as a Doctor

  • Her motivation for training

  • 2018/2019 preparing to go to Antarctica

  • Mindset from making the change from a multi stage race to a single stage race

  • What’s the next thing which is a bit harder?

  • Breaking down the challenge to make it more manageable

  • Keeping focused on the present and not looking too far ahead

  • Recovery in between races when taking on 4 - 100mile races in a year

  • The benefits of gentle walking and taking time away from running

  • Planning her training before getting a running trainer

  • Running 6/7 days per week, plus long runs at the weekend

  • To get faster you have to run faster

  • What happened in the 2015 Dragons Back Race

  • Not being able to recover between day 1 and day 2

  • Dealing with failure and the lessons learned

  • Top tips for people who want to enter the Dragons Back Race

  • The importance of hill training and navigation

  • Eat on the ups

  • Eating while running and go to nutrition

  • Working with a trainer and the mental side of preparation for the Spartathlon Race

  • The benefits of proper, focused training

  • Missing a session….

  • The Spartathlon Experience

  • Needing assistance at the end

  • Feeling relief at the end of the race

  • Feeling deflated after getting home from Greece

  • Top tips for runners

Social Media

Instagram - @katganly

Twitter - @katganly

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