Shakila’s Story

Shakila discovered the ladies social running group at Trittiford Mill Park earlier this year and has started the Couch to 5k training programme. She said that being part of the group has ‘been my saviour during covid’.

Shakila is a stay-at-home mum who looks after her two young children. As someone who loves spending time outdoors, she has found lockdown tough. She said it was ‘really difficult being in everyday, the same four walls you’re seeing every day. If you don’t go out, if you don’t make the effort, you’re just going to be sitting down in the house.’

Since having children and throughout lockdown, Shakila explained that she has been walking a lot as a way to get some exercise and spend time out of the house.

‘I needed to do something for myself because my back was getting sore, and I was out of shape. I don’t like gyms, I prefer the outdoors, so I just go for a walk. Running I think was the next step up to walking’.

Living in the local area, she used to notice the ladies running group at Trittiford Mill while she was out on her walk. She decided that she would join once her youngest child started school.

Being part of the group has given Shakila a boost. She has enjoyed meeting likeminded people and her back is less painful. ‘It gives you a little buzz afterwards. You feel refreshed when you go back home, you’re tired because you’re still getting used to it, but you feel refreshed.’

As a Muslim woman who wears a headscarf, Shakila explained that she can feel restricted from taking part in certain exercises because ‘I’m thinking, I don’t have the right clothes.’ She’s concerned about running during the warmer summer months and has found it hard to know where to shop for appropriate modest sportswear in the UK. But Shakila said that the group has been a friendly and supportive environment and she’s been asking them for advice. They chat and run, ‘you get to meet new people who are interested in the same things as you’.

We are currently delivering our running activities in groups of up to 6 people. Shakila is part of the Trittiford Mill Pool Ladies Social Running Group who meet on Mondays and Wednesdays at 9am. Visit the Facebook group to find out more and book onto a session.

Nina Conway
Author: Nina Conway