London Marathon: Naomi Prasad's 110 marathons
- 19 April 2012
- From the section London
Wapping runner Naomi Prasad will notch up her 110th marathon on Sunday as she pounds the streets of London. So, how did a former anorexic become a record breaker?
The 29-year-old east Londoner first started running only nine years ago and, in 2010, she became the youngest female ever to have run 100 marathons.
She held the title for eight months but as a teenager she was not active.
"I didn't do any sport at all at school. I tried my best to get out of it. I was really, really skinny. There was a stage the teachers didn't want me to do sport because they thought I would pass out."
Naomi signed up to run the Paris marathon when she was 20 to raise sponsorship for a university expedition to Borneo. It took her five hours and 10 minutes.
She said: "Nobody believed someone like me could do it. I really enjoyed the feeling of being fit. It turned the anorexia on its head. There I was trying to stop myself eating and then it was a revelation to think actually I have to keep eating in order to keep going."
100 Marathon Club
Her passion for the 26.2 mile event grew and she began clocking up the distances.
Naomi said: "I started doing more and more. Then I realised I could reach the record before I turned 30. So that required quite an effort. I did 36 in 2009 and 52 in 2010 just to get the numbers done. I did my 100th marathon when I was 29."
Naomi became the first woman from an Asian background to become a member of The 100 Marathon Club. The only prerequisite for membership was the completion of 100 marathons.
What are her tips for a first time marathon runner?
"The first six miles try not to go off too quickly because you'll regret it later. Up to about half way you want to be cruising along, managing your pace.
"I find the hardest miles at 16 to 20. I hate it every single time. The last 6.2 miles you've got to treat it as a 10K run. Forget about the miles you've already done. It's a long way and no matter how many you've done, you'll always feel pretty tired at the end.
"You could have done one or 100 but you always feel grateful and happy you've finished."
London is likely to be Naomi's last marathon. She plans to concentrate on shorter distances and faster times.
"To be honest I think I've done enough, I've fallen out of love with marathons a bit. I'm looking forward to doing London.
"It's a great race and one of the biggest in the world. If I do decide to stop running marathons, it's a great place to have done my last one."