Paula Radcliffe MBE - fastest female marathoner of all time!

Paula Radcliffe MBE - fastest female marathoner of all time,

Paula has had a passion for running every since she was young, she was inspired by her father to take up running and joined her first running club when she was 9 years old and she hasn’t stopped, apart from when dealing with injury.

Paula is a British long-distance runner, who has dominated at the marathon distance - 26.2 miles. She has won the London Marathon and New York Marathon three- times, as well as winning the 2002 Chicago Marathon. In 2003, Paula ran the fastest female marathon of all time at the London Marathon. A record breaking time of 2 hrs, 15 mins and 25 seconds. This record still stands today.

I got to meet Paula at RunFestRun where I heard her talk about her career the ups and the downs and what she’s learnt along the way. I know her story will inspire others, I’m so pleased Paula has come on the Tough Girl Podcast on the 4th year anniversary to share more about her career, why she loves running, her training tactics, mental strategy as well as sharing more about her life now after becoming a mother and after retiring from professional running.

Listen to Paula Now!

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Show notes

  • What life was like growing up

  • When running started to become more serious

  • Joining her first running club at 9 years old

  • Having fun with her running

  • Heading off to University

  • Wanting to see if she could make it as a full time athlete

  • Not having to get a proper job until her 40s

  • Who her role models were growing up

  • Pushing her body hard and competing against herself

  • Dealing with injury and not being able to run

  • Why the marathon is her favourite race

  • Running according to “feel”

  • Race strategies and tactics for the marathon

  • If you have a gap in a race you have to exploit it

  • Her pain levels and pain threshold

  • The highs and lows of 2003 from setting the record to being injured and not being able to walk

  • The long term plan for the Athens Olympics in 2004

  • Hitting the wall at the Athens Olympics

  • Accepting what happened and moving forward

  • Wanting to end the Olympic curse…

  • Falling out of love with running

  • What it was like running the fasting marathon time in London

  • Period during training and races

  • Starting to think about retiring from running and why the decision was made for her

  • Wanting to retire on her own terms in 2015

  • Never getting to do an ultra

  • Having children and how her life changed

  • Running through her pregnancy

  • School sports day!

  • What running looks like now

  • Tips and advice for women who want to get into running

  • Families on Track

  • Being Paula Radcliffe and what she does now!

  • Quick Fire Questions

Social Media

Website -

Instagram @paula_radcliffe

Twitter @paulajradcliffe

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