Laura Riches is a steeplechaser at heart but has also represented Great Britain on the mountains – add in the Beer Mile and it’s a fascinating mix.

For the year ahead, the Leigh Harrier aims to make her marathon debut and finish in under three hours, win the World Beer Mile after finishing second last year and to avoid any stress fractures.


Name: Laura Riches
Age (Jan 2018): 24
Hometown: Tyldesley, Manchester
Club: Leigh Harriers

Main disciplines: 3000m steeplechase
Other disciplines/events: Beer mile
Full-time athlete/ work/studying: Full-time PE Teacher

Goals or targets for 2018

1) Complete the Manchester Marathon in under 3 hours
2) To win the World Beer Mile in Vancouver in August
3) To not get a stress fracture
4) I still want to love running by the end of 2018

Career highlights

1) Representing GB at the World Mountain Running Championships (Albania 2011)
2) 2nd at the World Beer Mile 2017
3) 5th at the European Mountain running champs
4) 4 BUCS bronze medals

Personal bests

1) 2000m steeplechase: 6:38
2) 3000m steeplechase: 10:27
3) 3000m: 9:37
4) 10k 36:08

Interesting or fun facts

I drink 2 litres of diet coke a day.

I spent 2 years at Butler University in Indianapolis.

I played rugby union for 15 years, and have just started playing again after 5 years off.

Why do you run?

Many people often ask me this question and why I run so much. But the answer is simple – it’s because I just really love to run. I never feel like it’s something I have to do, it’s always something I want to do.

It also relaxes me and wakes me up in the morning before work.

Favourite training session

Anything long on the track, something like; 1 x 7 min, 2 x 5 min, 2 x 4 min, 2 x 3 min, 2 x 2 min, 2x 1 min.

Least favourite training session

Short hills or sprints, anything shorter than 300 metres really.

Favourite pre-race food

Pizza and ice cream.

Favourite post-race food

Diet coke and a pink lady apple, and usually some Haribo.

Favourite runner or runners

Paula Radcliffe.

Chosen charity for ‘fast runners: class of 2018’

Bowel Disease Research Foundation – a charity which funds research into bowel disease, bowel cancer and related illnesses.

Laura Riches is part of the ‘fast runners: class of 2018’  and will share her running jounery every month throughout 2018. More information can be found here.