School of Dentistry staff and students on the run for charity

Colleagues get set for the London Marathon, Sunday 23 April
Monday, April 3, 2017

Staff and students from the University of Dundee's School of Dentistry will join nearly 40,000 other runners at this year's Virgin Money London Marathon next month.

Dr Sarah Grosse, a clinical lecturer in paediatric dentistry; Dr Catherine Tothill, an associate specialist in orthodontics; and fourth year BDS student Rebecca Morris have been training hard for the last few months in a bid to best the 26-mile course around the country's capital.

While Catherine and Rebecca are tackling the race for the first time, Sarah is an experienced hand, having competed in three previous London Marathons -- her first 20 years ago, as a third year dental student.

"I was a student in London, so I'm looking forward to going. I'm a little bit apprehensive as well -- it's alright saying I've done it before, but now I am older so it might not be quite as easy." Sarah said.

“It takes longer to recover these days, and I get more tired than the last time I trained for it. But there are people in their 80s who run it, so I can’t use age as an excuse!”

“I’ve told my third year students they need an outlet from the stress of treating patients and study -- and exercise is really good for your mental and physical wellbeing. It’s good for clearing the head, so I would strongly recommend others take up some form of physical exercise, even if they don't want to run an actual marathon.”

Sarah is running the marathon on behalf of the ARCHIE Foundation.

If you wish to donate, please visit her Just Giving page. 

Both Catherine and Rebecca are members of the Dundee Hawkhill Harriers, a local running club that offers coaching for all ages, and whose members regularly compete in road running, cross country, hill running, and track and field events.

Though she has been running with the club since the age of 12, Rebecca first decided to tackle longer distances when she started studying at the University of Dundee.

“I always thought that 26 miles was far too long to train for, but after my first half marathon three years ago, I was keen to just give it a go and see whether I could do it!” Rebecca said.

“I signed up to the Edinburgh Marathon for May 2016, and started the long training road to building up to race day. My aim was to finish in under 3:45, as I knew I could therefore qualify for the London Marathon." 

“I finished in 3:20, and now I am really looking forward to the challenge, excitement and experience of running the London Marathon. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and something I've always wanted to tick off the bucket list!"

Rebecca is running the marathon on behalf of Juvenile Diabetes Research, in memory of a childhood friend. The charity funds research to find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes, and gives important support and a voice to people with Type 1 Diabetes and their families.

If you wish to donate, please visit her Just Giving page.

Catherine swore she would never run again following an experiment with a half marathon as a student – but since then it has become a passion, and she has been running for nearly ten years. She won her spot for the London Marathon in a Dundee Hawkhill Harriers club ballot.

Although she has never run a road marathon, Catherine’s time running with the 401 Challenge’s Ben Smith convinced her she could do it.

“London was the obvious choice for me. Several of my friends and family have done it in the past, and the atmosphere as a supporter was amazing.” Catherine said.

"I've been training since just after Christmas. I'm running about five times a week, and I'm covering about 40 miles over the sessions."

"I'm enjoying it, and everyone has been very supportive. I have several friends who run, and some have kept me company while I'm training so it's actually been quite sociable."

"Training also means I can eat as much cake as I like!"

For more information on studying Dentistry at the University of Dundee, visit our course pages.

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School of Dentistry staff and students on the run for charity