Name: Russell Tullett
Occupation: Hospital maintenance technician
Home Town: Portsmouth
What is your running background?
I started running at the age of 48 because my daughter wanted somebody to run
with at the gym. She only went to the gym once but I carried on and haven’t stopped running since. After a year I started racing, my first being 3 Forts marathon and very soon after I turned to ultras.
When did you first start running Ultra marathons and why?
My first ultra was Thames Trot in 2012 followed by some 50 mile events. Unfortunately I then had knee problems which prevented me from running and I had to have surgery on both knees. During this time I spent a lot of time helping out at Centurion events. When I could run again I started on a training plan specifically for Autumn 100 which I completed in 2016. From that point on my focus from then on was entirely on Spartathlon and I achieved my first qualifier at Tooting in 2017.
When or where (at which events) are we most likely to see you?
You are most likely to have seen me at a Centurion event as I have been a volunteer at every event between 2013 and 2019 except when I was actually running it. I have been a bit lapse as a volunteer lately due to my current training. I also enjoy 24 hour track events and the Canal races.
What are your personal key running achievements to date?
I consider myself to be a very average runner and as such do not feel that I have any real achievements of note.
However, I did win my age category at the Paris Sri Chimnoy 100k in 2017 which I was chuffed about.
What was your hardest experience?
In 2018 GUCR was the hardest race experience for me due to the extremes in weather conditions that we experienced. However, later that year I ran Spartathlon for the first time and this was even harder. We were fortunate to have medicane Zorba throughout the entire race and I was not sufficiently prepared for this.
What is your typical race strategy for an ultra?
I don’t really have a race strategy although I do have a plan for my nutrition and pace. Inevitably my best laid plans go out the window at some point.
What does a typical training week look like?
I do have a coach and I do whatever he says. Typically I run 40 miles a week building up to higher mileage for specific events.
What one tip would you pass onto people running an Ultra marathon for the first time?
Have a plan A, B and C and don’t be afraid to change your plan if necessary.
Tell us one interesting fact about you?
I used to be a power lifter.
Have you taken part in the Spartathlon before?
I have been going to spartathlon since 2014 where I have been crewing numerous athletes over this time. I was lucky to make the start line in 2018
Where did you get your qualifier for Spartathlon:
What are you looking forward to at the Spartathlon race?
I am most looking forward to reaching and passing the point where I timed out last time I did it. Also meeting up with old friends.
What are you not looking forward to during the Spartathlon race?
There is nothing that I am not looking forward to.
How will you prepare specifically for the Spartathlon race?
No different to last time but I will be better prepared for the unexpected.
Will you be bringing any support crew to the race? (If so, please introduce them briefly)
I will bringing the same crew as I had for 2018. My race wife Nici Griffin and Sharon Mcmullan