Runner told she would ‘never run again’ after being hit by a car takes on ultramarathon

Sarah Morwood, 35, from Somerset took on running as a bid to lose weight. The junior doctor quickly caught the bug and joined her local running club, taking part in her first marathon in 2012.

By 2015 Morwood had progressed to running frequent ultramarathons, taking part in gruelling races up and down the country. Winning the 2015 Race to the Stones women’s event, a 100km race across the Rideway, the UK’s oldest path, she seemed unstoppable.

Yet Morwood’s passion for running was turned upside down when she was involved in a hit of run in January 2016 whilst cycling. She had fractured her right patella and had months of surgery ahead of her. “I spend 11 weeks non-weight baring as a result” Sarah said. “With two rounds of surgery for fixation followed by a third surgery for metalwork removal a year later”.

The severity of Morwood’s injury, plus the extensive surgery and months of rehab led surgeons to believe she would never run again. “The surgeons at the time told me I probably wouldn’t run again. When they told me what had happened I remember screaming. I felt like my entire world had come crashing down.”

Related: 15 amazing UK marathons that aren't in London 

Undeterred, Sarah set out on the road to recovery, spending months with a physiotherapist doing swimming, strength and conditioning training, determined to run again. Once she was able to, she started by walking three miles a day on crutches, increasing this distance to six miles once she was able to bear weight.

Incredibly, just a year since her final surgery, Morwood has made a full return and is now running between 50 and 60 miles per week. She said: “I love running and run pretty much every day. I have a coach these days because I needed guidance coming back from injury. I have to do a lot of physio and strength and conditioning, which is vital for any runner to avoid injury, especially when longer distances are involved.”

She is also set to take on Dixons Carphone Race to the Stones this July, where she hopes to repeat her success of 2015. “Race to the Stones is the perfect time of year for me to run. I’ve always loved the Ridgeway and wanted to do an ultra along it, which is why I first signed up in 2015. It’s a friendly and welcoming race which isn’t always the case on the trail circuit.

“I’d love to better my existing time this year if I could. I’ve managed to get back to competition level since my fracture and it’s really amazing and satisfying for me to improve on times I did pre-fracture, given the pessimistic prognosis I had.”