Alissa wins first half marathon

17th October

Alissa Ellis

Alissa Ellis crossing the line at Bournemouth. Credit:

A mother of four from Bodle Street Green has won her first half marathon at the age of 41.

Alissa Ellis, a member of Hailsham Harriers, was the first woman over the line at the Bournemouth Half Marathon on 7th October in an incredible time of 1hr 24 minutes and 25 seconds.

Alissa admits her achievement was “quite unexpected”. She had been hoping to complete the 13.1 mile race in under 1hr and 30 minutes.

She explains: “I think the cold weather made me go faster and my training for the Beachy Head Marathon also helped. It was my first time at Bournemouth and I will definitely be back next year.”

The reward for being first woman was a glass trophy, £250 in cash and a voucher.

Alissa started running with her husband Dan, who teaches at Heathfield Community College, in 2011, to raise funds for muscular dystrophy after their son Arthur, 11, was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Her other children are Poppy, 17, Hector, 16, and Lola aged 13.

Alissa Ellis on the podium at Bournemouth

Alissa Ellis on the podium at Bournemouth. Photo courtesy of

“I got fit and really enjoyed the running. I joined Hailsham Harriers in 2012 and have been improving ever since. There is lots of juggling to fit in the training and some very early starts but I am hooked and really love it,” said Alissa.

Alissa runs five times a week and currently works as a physio and hydro assistant at The Bevern Trust in Lewes – a residential home for profoundly disabled adults.