Four years ago she couldn't even run to the mailbox, but tomorrow Marama Christie will take on 62km as part of the Tarawera Ultramarathon.

Running from Kawerau to the Government Gardens is no easy feat and will be the furthest run Christie has attempted.

Her running journey started only started four years ago, when the Rotorua Marathon was turning 50 and so was she.

"It was a milestone for both of us, so my husband said that I should do it.

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"I couldn't even run to the mailbox."

Determined to run she went along to a muster held by Kerris Brown.

"I felt really out of place, like I had a beacon on my head which said 'I don't belong here'."

That day the group ran 10km and Christie learnt what it mean to be the "tail-end Charlie".

"In the early days I was barely able to make it to the next power pole, but the day I did my first 2km without stopping, that was a big day."

Since then she has run four marathon-distance races and a 50km.

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"I think, if I can do it, then anybody can, the biggest challenge is yourself, and that little voice in your head," she said.

"We were a nervous wreck at the beginning of those longer distances, but what you put in, you'll get out of it and once you start, it just really starts getting into you."

Marama Christie is getting ready to take on 62km as part of the Tarawera Ultramarathon. Photo/Stephen Parker
Marama Christie is getting ready to take on 62km as part of the Tarawera Ultramarathon. Photo/Stephen Parker

She is now part of the group Jogging the Powerpoles and works to its training routine.

"The biggest step was turning up.

"If it wasn't for Kerris, I really wouldn't be doing this."

Throughout her training there has been a key source of inspiration for Christie, her daughter Tui.

Eight years ago Tui suffered a serious head injury in a road crash.

"When it gets tough, I think of her and what she's been through."

Since the accident Tui has completed her own marathon.

"I was meeting with friends, we were coming up with our own plan for the marathon and Tui kept calling out to me," Christie said.

"I went into her room and she was holding her own sign-up sheet, I just about cried that day."

These last few days she has been working hard to "get in the right head space".

"I've got 16 hours to do it, and I am not out there with any time in mind, I'm just out there to do it.

"I'm aiming to meet the cut-offs, the rest is just a bonus."