THE Boston Marathon bombings have not dampened the enthusiasm of a Charles Sturt University runner who has been selected to join the Indigenous Marathon Project.
Elise Hull, a Bachelor of Arts student and indigenous resource officer in the CSU Division of Student Learning in Bathurst, is looking forward to competing in the New York City Marathon this November and has been training conscientiously since her selection in March for the project.
“As an indigenous student and staff member of Charles Sturt University, I am looking forward to representing the university and the Bathurst community,” Ms Hull said.
“I hope this project will inspire people in both my work and personal life to get fit and get healthy.”
With Australian marathon champion Robert de Castella as project director, the IMP aims to promote healthy and active lifestyles in indigenous communities.
The 2013 IMP squad’s six men and six women are training to run in the world-famous New York City Marathon (40,000 competitors and two mill-ion spectators) which is held each November.
When the call for applicants went out for the IMP squad, Ms Hull attended a try-out in Sydney with more than 100 indigenous men and women from various communities and walks of life.
Under the guidance of Mr de Castella, the squad spends seven months training for this event and attending training camps.
During these training camps, the squad completes a Certificate IV in Health and Leisure.
This helps the athletes with their running goals, and also gives them tools to become healthy leaders and role models within their communities to promote health and physical exercise.
“I feel so privileged and humbled to have been selected as a member of the IMP squad for 2013,” Ms Hull said.
“Around six months ago, I was approached by a friend who wanted to change her health for the better.
“She had decided to start running and, despite living in different towns, asked if I would be her jogging buddy.
“I agreed and over a few months we completed the Couch to 5K program. As busy mothers it suited us perfectly; running was relatively cheap (all you need is a good pair of joggers) and it fit in with our schedules.
“In those six months, I’ve gone from running 30 second intervals to running over 10 kilometres.
“Together, we’ve completed the Colour Run in Sydney, the Hotel Canobolas five kilometres (Orange Colour City Running Festival), and huffed and puffed our way up Mount Canobolas in the recent Great Volcanic Mountain Challenge (11 kilometres).
“While we have more fun runs planned throughout the year, it’s not just about racing – I’ve fallen in love with running.
“It’s great for stress release, it’s great for health and fitness, but it’s also got my four-year-old daughter interested in being healthy and active.”
As part of her program, Ms Hull will need to complete a 30km time trial at Uluru in September to book her place on the plane to New York.