From Asthma patient to World record holder : Paula Radcliffe

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Paula Jane Radcliffe was born on December 17, 1973, in Northwich, Cheshire, England. Despite being an asthmatic child when she first developed a passion for track and field, Radcliffe would go on to set and break her own world record in the women’s marathon and become known as one of the world’s elite runners.

Being diagnosed with asthma at the age of 14, Paula Radcliffe went on to win multiple world titles at cross country, the half marathon, and marathon. She also won three New York and three London marathons, setting the world record of 2:15:25 in the British capital in 2003. Since 1998 Radcliffe has been a patron of the charity Asthma UK and in 2018 she was named an ambassador for the IAAF’s clean air initiative.


Personal best(s) 5000 m: 14:29.11
10,000 m: 30:01.09
Half Marathon: 1:05:40
Marathon: 2:15:25 WR

”   10 Running Facts about Paula “

  1.  At the age of 7, she started running.

  2.  I used to run with my father who was a keen runner himself. He ran the London Marathon several times.

  3. She joined Frodsham Athletics Club in Cheshire at the age of 9.

  4. She saw Ingrid Kristiansen break the world marathon record at the London Marathon in 1985 and that really inspired her to be world champion in this sport.

  5. At the age of 12, she ran her first race was English Schools Cross Country Championships.

  6. On her first race, she finished 299th out of a field of 600.

  7. The following year she came in fourth, and a couple of years later she won the English Schools 1500m title. That was her first big win.

  8. She was diagnosed with asthma at the age of 14.

  9.  At the Chicago Marathon (2002 ), Radcliffe set a new women’s world marathon record time of 2 hours, 17 minutes and 18 seconds.

  10. At the London Marathon(2003), Radcliffe broke her own marathon record, finishing the race in 2 hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds—her best marathon time to date—on April 13, 2003.

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