August 16th, 2021 | Char Binns
Say hello to chatty runner Stacey Marston, founder of The Runner’s Bookshelf.
Name: Stacey Marston (she/her)
Current location: Birmingham
Occupation: Human Resources System – Recruitment Product Owner (wish you hadn’t asked now?!)
Running style: Chatty!
What’s your favourite book about running?
Usually the one I’ve just read! That’s such a difficult question because I love running books, but a rare example of a book I loved so much I read it twice is The Art of Running Faster by Julian Goater, I also loved Deena Kastor’s Let Your Mind Run and a recent book that made me laugh and cry was Paul Tonkinson’s 26.2 Miles to Happiness.
What’s your most unusual mid-run snack?
Not a snack as such but I inadvertently drank what I think was mulled white wine during the Ljubljana Half Marathon, thinking it was some kind of isotonic energy drink. I was already quite hot and not expecting it so it was not as pleasant as it sounds! Usually I stick to gels in marathons, but I did once really enjoy some Haribo Tangfastics that I’d thrown in at the last minute and made such a pleasant change from the sticky sweetness of most energy gels and drinks.
What’s the best meal you’ve ever eaten post-run/race?
I spent a long time on a long run with a friend discussing how a fish finger sandwich is the ideal food to refuel post run; I think we probably didn’t talk about anything else for several miles! By the time I got home I was practically salivating at the thought of it but I had no tartare sauce, which for me is a vital component. My husband said, “Oh I’ll just make some,” (well he is a chef), so with the home-made sauce plus the anticipation it was the best sandwich ever – FFS FTW!
Tell us about a memorable run you’ve been on and why.
The first time I did Thunder Run (a 24-hour relay in Catton Park, Derbyshire) I was really lucky to do my last lap in the enviable sunrise slot. It was still a bit dark as I ran through the woods and then I emerged onto the ridge to see the first light. It was beautiful and the campsite was still so quiet. I felt really elated and peaceful at the same time. It’s a great event anyway but that moment makes it a memorable one for me.
Recommend a race for other Bookhounds to try.
There’s this small, practically unheard of race called The London Marathon… oh, you’ve already heard of it? Well I was always a bit sniffy about it before I actually did it. I entered the ballot every year and entered our club ballot too for a few years, but I always thought there was a lot of fuss for a race when there are so many other marathons that don’t get the same attention. I finally got a place through the ballot in 2017 and had an amazing time. People who had never been interested in my running suddenly wanted to hear all about it because I was running in a race that’s “on the telly”. The atmosphere in London was incredible, and the organisation is brilliant; I found myself getting into the London spirit in spite of myself (and yes, I did get “on the telly”).
What’s on the top of your running playlist?
I usually listen to podcasts while I’m running alone these days, although I always used to listen to music. If you’ve got some Beatles, Dolly Parton and Bowie on your playlist though you can’t go far wrong!
Who is your ultimate running hero?
The founder of parkrun, Paul Sinton-Hewitt, because for me running is about community, inclusion and enjoyment and parkrun epitomises that side of running. I was fortunate to meet PSH and Jo, his wife, when I was on the Isle of Man (at parkrun) and they were as lovely in person as you can imagine.
Cat or dog?
Dog (sorry cats, but I would also choose dogs over most humans too!) We have a Gordon Setter, Ziggy, who has just had his first birthday and I am looking forward to running with him now he’s old enough.
Shorts or leggings?
Shorts for Summer, leggings for Winter (is that cheating?)
Tea or coffee?
Tea! Preferably in a large mug, with a regular top up.
Where’s the first place you’d like to run post-lockdown?
My home parkrun, Cannon Hill in Birmingham. I feel a bit emotional just thinking about it.
Where can other Bookhounds connect with you?