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Lang embarks on marathon effort

Sharon Lang has read books, sought advice and done the training, but admits she has no idea what to expect from her maiden marathon this weekend.

DAMEN FRANCIS February 21, 2013 4:10am

Sharon Lang is new to running, but will tackle her first ever marathon at Wangaratta on Sunday.


Sharon Lang has read books, sought advice and done the training, but admits she has no idea what to expect from her maiden marathon this weekend.

In July last year, the 53-year-old had an epiphany while reading a book by American ultra-marathoner Scott Jurek and decided to give it a go.

The Wahring resident’s first port of call was Shepparton Runners’ Club and on Sunday Lang will tackle the Wangaratta Marathon.

‘‘I don’t know what strange stroke of fate led me to believe I could ever run a marathon,’’ Lang said.

‘‘I contacted Steve Trevaskis (at Shepparton Runners’ Club) and chatted to him and he said to come on down to have a run and some fun.

‘‘Luckily I had the help of Steve, who has done 28, and he was really helpful with advice of things to do and things not to do.’’

Aside from weekly social runs with the club on Wednesday nights, Lang has completed the rest of her training on her own.

The longest she has run is 35km, some way short of the 42km she will need to run to complete the race this weekend.

Since committing to the challenge, Lang has come to love the sport and learned plenty about herself along the way.

‘‘My only ever race was the Tungamah 10000, which I did as part of my training to try and learn what actual race conditions are like,’’ she said.

‘‘I discovered I was a bit more competitive than I thought and I enjoy having a lot of time to think and getting to a point where you have nothing left to think about.’’

Despite enjoying the peace and quiet, Lang said what she loved most was the camaraderie offered by the running group and that she could not thank the Shepparton club enough for its support.

As well as Lang, two other Shepparton Runners’ Club members have entered the marathon and 13 others will contest the various fun run distances, with every kilometre run giving them points in the teams event.

Trevaskis, SRC’s publicity officer, said the club was excited to be taking such a large team to the event.

‘‘The Wangaratta event is nearly right on six months from the Shepparton event and like our Shepparton event it utilises mainly cycling paths and quiet roads,’’ Trevaskis said.

‘‘It would be nice (to win the teams event), but I’ve heard there are a number of pretty big teams from Wangaratta itself and though we might be able to get a few into the longer events I don’t know that we’ll have enough to take out the top prize.’’

As for Lang, her aim this weekend is pretty simple.

‘‘To me it’s about finishing the darn thing, I don’t want to not finish,’’ she said.

‘‘I’m scared, but I feel like I’ve done the training.’’

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