20 marathons in 20 days – Paula’s pavement-pounding task


Paula Moir is training to run 20 marathons in 20 consecutive days.

ANDY JACKSON/Stuff

Paula Moir is training to run 20 marathons in 20 consecutive days.

Paula Moir is going to spend most of August running.

Starting August 11, she will run 20 marathons on 20 consecutive days.

‘’I know. It’s a lot,’’ Moir, 56, said.

In 2018, Moir went to the UK and ran 10 marathons in 10 days, with a group called Saxons, Vikings and Normans.

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They told her they were going to do 20 marathons in 20 days in 2020 and invited her to join them.

‘’At the time I was on my last lap, and it was gale force winds and torrential rain and minus four degrees…’’

She said no, but in January had a change of heart and entered the event. Then Covid-19 ruined her plans.

Paula Moir has gone through four pairs of shoes while training for her 20 days of running.

ANDY JACKSON/Stuff

Paula Moir has gone through four pairs of shoes while training for her 20 days of running.

‘’Virtual races started being a thing, so I thought what the hell, just have a crack.’’

She will send the UK organisers the global positioning satellite (GPS) data proof that she’s finished each race, and they’ll send her the medals, she said.

‘’Over there, every day it’s the same people trying to do the same thing, so there’s lots of encouragement. But doing it here on the other side of the world, doing it all on your own, it’s a whole different thing.’’

Paula Moir ran 10 marathons in 10 days in the UK in 2018 and has the medals to prove it.

ANDY JACKSON/Stuff

Paula Moir ran 10 marathons in 10 days in the UK in 2018 and has the medals to prove it.

Going alone meant Moir had to plan the routes for her runs.

‘’I’ll be trying to get on the road as much as I can because I don’t like running on the footpath. It’s hard on the legs. I’m trying to avoid too many hills, which is impossible. I’m going to do it in town. I’ll start in Fitzroy and do some loops around the lake. I’ll do one at Okato, some at Lepperton.’’

Her aim is to finish each of the 42.2kms daily runs, so she isn’t too bothered about times, she said.

‘’I did my other ones on average five hours 15, so maybe 5.30. Just going slow.’’

Training includes seeing a nutritionist and sorting running shoes. She has gone through four pairs while training and has three new pairs broken in and ready to alternate during the 20 days because she can’t wear the same pair two days in a row.

Moir’s biggest worry is getting injured. She will have the afternoons to recover as well as putting in a couple of hours at her day job at Taranaki Honda.

‘’I’m hoping to become a bit of a robot, in a routine, just get it done, eat and rest.’’

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