Keep on running!

Thursday 10th February 2011 12:00 am
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44-year old Goytre athlete Angela Jones enjoyed a fantastic season in 2010 on bike, foot, and in the water and is hoping to prove once again in 2011 that age is rendered somewhat inconsequential when confronted with the all-consuming will to win.

Last year a tenacious Angela bounced back bravely from several shoulder dislocations to

win Welsh Championship titles in duathlons, sprint triathlons, aquathons, and off-road triathlons.

And after over five months of hard slog throughout the daunting duration of the Welsh triathlon season she was eventually crowned with the honour of coming second Senior Welsh Lady overall.

Angela's fiercely competitive spirit also saw her reap the royal reward of first place in an additional 28 races - with times on average impressively faster than they were ten years ago.

Angela told the Chronicle, "My form in 2010 has been fabulous and I feel in top condition and raring to go for 2011."

In recent years Angela has been to five World Championships representing Wales and ran at senior level for her country in the first Commonwealth mountain racing championships held in 2010.

The plucky cross-country runner explained, "My goal for the new season is to retain the Welsh titles in all of my disciplines at category and to get selected for the Welsh team and represent the country once again at Commonwealth mountain running."

Angela is no stranger to what some might call the masochistic pursuit of running up and down mountains. In May of last year she participated in an epic race at Pen-y-Fan where she lost four toe nails for the privilege of winning the women's competition.

Angela revealed, "The race incorporated five hours of running up and down Pen-y-Fan, which involved about nine thousand feet of climbing and descending. It's similar to what the SAS do when they train there. It was very hot on the day but I thoroughly enjoyed it."

The one sporting disappointment in 2010 for Angela was when she tried out for the Great Britain team in the World duathlon championships in Cambridge.

"I had put in an excellent 10k run," said Angela, "And 26 miles into the bike ride I was at the front of the pack, but unfortunately I suffered a puncture which really knocked my confidence.

"Had I completed the race, I would have qualified in category for the World championships."

Looking to let nothing stand in the way of success this year, Angela is committed to a strict regime which involves training in season for 25 hours a week and racing up to three or five times over the course of seven days.

However, the dedicated athlete who also coaches part-time and enjoys every minute of passing on skills to youngsters, revealed, "My true passion is for running in the mountains. I am up there most days - clocking up 50 to 80 miles a week. Weather permitting, I also try to clock up one hundred miles on the bike every week.

"In addition, I also enjoy open water swimming and get in the River Wye as often as I can in season."

Determined to go on competing for as long as possible and regarding her age as nothing more than just a number, Angela said, "I think my recent run of achievements prove that even in your forties you can still be up there competing with the best and proving age really doesn't matter."

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