Masters runner Lisa Gawthorne overcame a recent injury to compete against Europe’s best – and bring home three medals.
The company director for a vegan confectionary company picked up a knee injury just two months ago. She had to rest for six weeks before a couple of weeks of light training – just before the first race.
Starting at 8:30 pm in the dark in Funchal, Portugal, the runners had staggered starts in order to socially distance.
“I enjoyed taking over a few people and it wasn’t until the last mile I ended up in the first place for my age group” Lisa told Great Vegan Athletes. “I ended up finishing seven seconds ahead of the next girl in my age group so I had to work for it with a strong finish. I was so ecstatic to find out at the end that I finished 8th in Europe in total across all females and first in my age group (of which 5 ran)! I was literally over the moon. It was so special standing on the podium as they played the national anthem. I will never forget that moment.”
Lisa also helped Great Britain to the Silver medal in the ten-team competition.
After the late night race, there were more challenges the next morning – cross country relays. Lisa raced again, part of a three woman team racing 2 km each.
“It was hard racing late the night before as the relays were staged in the morning but it was such a a beautiful setting 1500 metres above sea level in the mountains of Madeira. The terrain was undulating with some rocky hills but very enjoyable.”
Lisa’s team took Silver!
“To get team silver was the cherry on the cake for the week!”
And her knee held out!