The National Cross Country Relays and all that Jazz by ‘one old duffer’

Report from Neville Rowles from the National Cross Country Relays on Saturday 5 November 2016

Thanks Neville

——-

Full of trepidation, the eight of us met in a cold but Sunny car park at the back of Tongwell lake to prepare for the onslaught of the day. Someone somewhere had come up with the idea of running a cross country relay and seven of the eight of us had been rather foolhardy in putting our names forward!! We divided ourselves between two cars and prepared for the journey from Milton Keynes to Mansfield. After a brief stop at the services to make sure that Paul caught up and didn’t get lost again we went in a small convoy to the course!!

We arrived to find a packed course with literally thousands of runners hanging around, looking serious and clearly knew what they were doing. Nerves began to take over with trips to the toilet, panic buying of spikes and removing the general malaise from the journey. In typical cross country fashion we were rather relaxed about the preparation, despite the rather star studied field that awaited our presence. We took advantage of the facilities and did a few laps of the athletics track to warm up, and figured that a jog around the course was of no value as we would either scare ourselves silly or get completely lost!!

As we had split into teams designated by the car loading we had James Down, James Armstrong, Martyn Douglas and Paul Mizon in one car (AKA the non-fun bus) and then Aidy Maidment, Neville Rowles, Stuart Sullivan and Simon Read in the other (the fun bus) The order of running was allocated and we prepared to race!!

national-cross-country-relays-nov-2016

A few stretches ensued and some banter between the non-fun bus and the fun bus teams about who will win and that the losers will subsequently buy the beers ensued. Aidy and James went into the start area ready for their race, at which point we all realised that we had drawn the short straws as they first leg was shorter than the rest (a fact vehemently denied by the first leg runners who claimed that they ran just as far but they had to do it on the flat whereas we had to go downhill !!)

 

 

There was an announcement on the tannoy and suddenly the first leg runners disappeared around the corner followed by a large bang and some cheering. Next thing we knew there was a crowd of them running around the lake. We prepared to figure out what to do next as of course none of us had any instructions, had not read any and didn’t listen to anything we had been told!! Some simple points like how does the handover work would have been useful!! Fear not, there will be a few teams ahead of us and we will figure it out we agreed!! Shortly after, the leaders came through on their first lap and to say that they were motoring would be an understatement!! Not long after, the green of redway could be seen with the bobbing head of James Down at the helm, the non-fun bus cheered but their cheers were soon quietened by the appearance of a rather fresh faced Aidy Maidment hot on the heels of Mr Down. They disappeared behind the lake into the wonders that we were soon to discover and the second leggers had to strip off and get ready to go.!!

James and I kept our kit on as long as possible to protect against the biting elements (its cold up north don’t you know) before finally succumbing to the demands of the officials and going into the handover area.!! Well, describing the handover area as chaotic would be an understatement!! It was like a bunfight at a nightclub bar on payday Friday with one barperson who was on their first shift!! I have to say that I’m not quite sure what happened next, but there was lots of shouting and before I knew it I saw James fly by and James ii speed off, I’m going to get him on the first hill I thought (in my dreams, he must have 30 years on me !!) Anyway, James was a softy running in gloves and a hat so I could see him clearly, whereas the rest of us were true ‘hardened cross country fellows’ as you do, in our flappy shorts and brief singlets!! (fools!) Suddenly, before I knew it, Aidys head popped over the hill and I dashed to the handover line as they called my number and I went off like a rocket!!! Yep, started too fast again and it was down hill !!!

Well, we sauntered on lovely patch of grass around a very pretty lake before a short sharp climb at a gap in the trees, a lovely fast decent across a bit of mud before having another short sharp climb into the trees !! Then began the viscous cycle of short sharp climbs and rapid descents before emerging from the treeline into the Nottinghamshire tundra where the temperature dropped by about 30 degrees !!!! At this point I understood James’ logic of wearing the hat and gloves and cursed my foolhardiness!! Mind you, I could see him in the distance and in my own deluded mind I was catching him up !!! (sadly not ) A lap of the tundra beckoned with a brief respite from the elements before embarking onto the downhill part of the tundra before returning to the uppy downy routine from before as we then flirted with the start finish area, however, they were teasing with us as we were sent around again !!! Cruelty to senior citizens I’d say !! By now I was absolutely blowing from all angles and despite being freezing cold was running ‘flat out in top’ as they say !!

The strategy from me became a quest for survival and to lose as few of the places that Aidy had given me as possible whilst accepting that my ambitious plan of catching James was at best somewhat flawed !!! Anyway, despite my low morale at this point I was encouraged extremely well from the other team members and all of the support and felt like a real star, despite feeling like I was backpedalling. I had actually passed a few people on the first lap, however, this was offset by being passed by some of the faster ones who had snuck onto leg two !! (Don’t they know the rules in relays, slowest person always goes second !!) Next thing I knew, (I had barely passed the first corner of the lake at this point) I could hear heavy breathing down my neck so I put on a spurt to hold them off and make them suffer !! , well this lasted for all of about a millisecond before I was spattered in dust, mud and the debris from the first three objects which I later discovered were the leading three in close competition. Someone mentioned that it one of them was a chap called Andy Vernon, who apparently is very good at this running lark !! Well, the bugger didn’t speak to me and he left me eating his dust !!! Worse thing was realising that I was a leg two runner on my second lap and he was a leg three runner !! Shaken, but not stirred, I saw this chap about my age (yes, there were some others over 50 !!) in front of me and had him in my sights !! In the aftermath of the event, James claimed to have held up Andy Vernon, slowed him down and then run alongside him as a kind of ‘have a go if you think you’re fast enough’ kind of challenge, although the rest of us think he was being somewhat economical with the truth over this !! The finish beckoned, not before long I thought as the second lap passed in a blur having failed in my goal to catch the dastardly James !!

I’m not sure what happened next, but Martyn from the non-fun bus team had by then removed his jeans and shoes, decided to do a warm up and went off with his massive strides to churn up the course and to set right the wrongs of Andy Vernon. Sadly, I didn’t witness any of Martyn’s run as I was dazzled by the fluorescent orange of Stuarts brand new spikes that had burned the back of my retinas!! Stuart, despite being in the ‘bigger boys bus’ had ventured onto the course with both gloves and hat, this despite wearing spikes that you could have seen from Mars!!

Before I knew it, Martyn was in and Paul was, in his typical way, off like a whippet across the course, shortly after, the glow of orange crested the hill which could only mean the arrival of Stuart back to the fold and the departure of Simon. Well, Paul must have eaten something special on the stop off at Starbucks, or had a double espresso or something as he positively flew around the course, despite the fun bus leader Simon throwing his all at him he just could not make up the damage caused by my overly keen start speed!! Paul came around on the first lap with his feet barely touching the ground he was going so fast only to be passed by Andy Vernon doing a ‘gentle warm down lap !!. Simon was in keen and hot pursuit, but his legs still had some of the effects of the rather fast Marathon he had recently completed in them and despite running fantastically he couldn’t make it all up against a supercharged Mizon.

We gathered together post race to dissect performance and to analyse how we had got on and then checked on the results. There were 166 finishing teams, more than that started but we are not sure how many!! The non fun bus (Youngsters !!) came 96th and the fun bus team came 128th. A pretty successful day out, especially as Milton Keynes B team were beaten by us as were Sparkhill Harriers and Rolls Royce, we also managed to mix it with the big boys in the playground and not get burned!! And, if age grading performance was taken into account, I think that you may find that the fun-bus team absolutely blitzed the non-fun bus, but we won’t argue about that will we J

Everyone behaved and admired the talent running before them and with them from a respectful distance, well, that is except for one member of the team, who shall remain nameless, who fawned at the feet of a certain Mr Andy Vernon like Baldrick before Blackadder and had a selfie with him and then got him to autograph his number.

As none of us had remembered our protein refuelling powders we opted for the next best thing, a burger, chips and a pint followed by a Jeigermeister or two in the nearest Witherspoons (not the drivers , we only let them eat !) A great result, great fun and celebrated in typical Redway runners style. Fastest lap : Paul Mizon. Rest of us all pretty close (well, if you call a three minute spread close !)

So, who’s up for parliament hill and the Southern Cross Country championships then, we need at least 9 or perhaps we can get two teams in?

 

Neville Rowles

——-

Next event up in the South of England cross country championship at Parliament hill (15k for men, 8k for women) January 28. Would be excellent to get as many as possible to this event. Only £7 entry. If interested message Paul Mizon or email him mizonp@hotmail.com

More info and results at:
http://www.englandathletics.org/england-athletics-news/ecca-national-cross-country-titles-decided-at-mansfield

On the run with Constance Hobbs

Name: Constance Hobbs

Joined Redway Runners: 10 June 2015

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is with Constance Hobbs, although she has now gone to away to university sure we will be seeing plenty of her

Thanks Constance

2 November 2016

**********

CLUB

  • When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

I used to run when I was at school but then I grew up and got increasingly lazy so I stopped for a few years. As I was coming back to Milton Keynes for a year, I decided to sign up for the Zero to Hero Programmed in July 2015 and became a member at the same time.

  • Have you run with other clubs how does Redway Runners Compare?

Now I’m back at University, I’ve started running with the Leeds Cross Country Club. Like RR, they’re brilliant at tailoring sessions to allow individuals to work to their own goal, but I’ve found that their longer runs are less inclusive than Redway Runners as apparently they haven’t heard of loopbacks.

  • Tell us about your first time? (with Redway Runners)

The first RR run I ever did was the Monday night set club run route. I ran with my Z2H mentor at the time and we actually had to take a shortcut as I could barely manage 3 miles, let alone 4! Nice to know now that I use the same route for recovery runs after my long Sunday run.

  • When and who do you run with the club?

The Sunday long club runs were essential to my training as the company takes your mind off of the distance. Monday night runs were good for recovery, and the Wednesday morning session was good fun when I could get to it. The Thursday night interval session/social run was usually hard work but I felt good once I’d done it.

Everyone who knows me will know that Amanda and I usually come as a pair (even though she’s a lot quicker than me) and I love running with the friends I made through Zero to Hero. Everyone in the club is super friendly so I’m happy to run with anybody.

YOU

  • What has been you best running achievement?

Running the Milton Keynes Marathon in May was amazing, and something I’ll never forget. I wanted to complete it in under 4.5 hours which I did, mostly thanks to my Dad running with me.

I also ran MK parkrun in under 25 minutes last month so I’m now hoping to bring that time as close to 20 minutes as possible.

  • Why do you run?

Most of the time it’s so I can eat whatever I want without worrying about gaining weight! But also for stress relief, and to see friends that I don’t see otherwise.

  • What would you do if you were not running?

Gain weight.

  • Favourite place to run?

Anywhere but Caldecotte Lake.

  • Tell us about your worst run?

Unfortunately it would have to be the Christmas Woburn Club run through the safari park. Seeing the animals was fab, but I got a really painful stitch about halfway round and had to walk/run the rest. Oakley 20 was also horrendous.

con-with-dad

  • Favourite running photo and why? (please send it as well)

My favourite photo is of my Dad and I at the end of the Milton Keynes Marathon. Throughout Z2H, I had injuries and set backs so at this point in the race I was just so proud of myself that I had managed to finish the race, and to fulfill my Dads dream of running a marathon with one of his children.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?

Every 4/5 weeks I will have a wobble with my running mojo. Usually it’s because I’ve been injured or haven’t had the time to make the club runs. As soon as I get back to seeing everyone and running in a group, the mojo comes back.

  • Do you always round up?

If I’m over halfway through a mile when I get to the end of a run, then yes I would round up.

  • Worst/Best advice you’ve ever been given?

Apply to this Zero to Hero Programme in the newspaper, all you have to do is run a marathon at the end of it! (you can decide if it’s the best or worst)

  • What did you learn from your first marathon, and what would you change?

I learnt that pacing is really important, especially in the first half of the race. I wouldn’t change much, except maybe the fact I think I got too excited with the carb-loading the days before the race….

  • What do you think about when you run?

Making sure that I’m still breathing.

  • Loop backs, love them for the social?

I usually dislike running the loop backs but they’re brilliant for keeping everyone together and also mean that people of different speeds can still socialise on a run.

  • Run to time or distance?

Always distance. Time isn’t important in running, just as long as you do what’s right for you.

RACE/EVENTS

  • What was your favourite race and why?

Bacchus. The reasons for that are pretty obvious.

  • Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink

I go for a very slow jog the day before a race to get the legs moving but apart from that it’s business as usual, apart from all the worry and moaning that I offload to the people around me. Lots of water throughout the day, and usually a dinner of pasta with bread, and a rice pudding to finish off the day.

  • Favourite parkrun and why?

I haven’t been able to complete many different parkruns but on Boxing Day last year I managed to run the Portsmouth race. The route consists of 2.5km out along the seafront and 2.5km back with the wind literally blowing us across the path but everyone was wearing Christmas gear though so it was all good fun.

  • What’s your one race essential?

My tiny running shorts that everyone makes fun of me for wearing.

  • Have you considered joining the cross country team?

I’m hoping to run some of the races this year, and I took part in the last year which was a really good thing to do. The motivation from the other club members is brilliant, and it doesn’t matter how slow or fast you are.

  • What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

Considering how unlikely a win is, I’d settle for a PB.

 

con-running

On the run with Kevin Orchard

Name: Kevin Orchard

Joined Redway Runners: 6 January 2011

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is with Kevin Orchard who joined the club right at the beginning and has come a long way since

Thanks Kevin

3 October 2016

**********

CLUB

  • When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

I used to be a sprinter at school and only took up distance running in 1982 when I was posted to Pakistan at the age of 22. I took part in several weekly “snake-dodging” social runs and a Monday evening “Islamabad Hash House Harriers” event which was part work and part fun as it was where diplomats gathered to exchange stories and try and get the Russians drunk in the hope they would give away their secrets. I subsequently took part in many hundreds of Hash runs around the world until life, work and children took over in my early 30’s and I took a break.

I woke up one morning in late 2007 and decided the rather large person in the mirror needed to get fit so I joined David Lloyd. Several months later I had been through 3 sets of clothes and was about 3 stone lighter when I met Martin Lawrence in a spin class. Martin was discussing his participation in the Great South Run with a fellow spinner so I plucked up the courage to ask him when and where he ran? He said that David Lloyd ran a Thursday morning running session (with Jacqui Laycock) and that I should join them. Martin and I became good friends and along with about 10 other people we ran with the group – until David Lloyd cancelled it and withdrew Jacqui’s services as run lead. And there it began – Redway Runners was born. Martin took over the run organisation and the original gang of about 10 were quickly swelled by many new Redway Runners, mainly through parkrun. I am very proud to be a founder member of this amazing club.

  • Have you run with other clubs how does Redway Runners Compare?

I had a short spell as a member of another MK running club but it really wasn’t what I wanted. It was not all inclusive and rather geared up for the fast runner. I wanted a more social organisation that catered for all levels.

  • What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

Definitely the camaraderie. Being with similar people with similar interests has resulted in me having many new friends and contacts. I have been so lucky to have met and run with a number of “legends in their own lifetimes” such as Doug Yabsley, Abi Gooch, Jen Sangster, Mike King, Veritie Yates, Simon Baker and many others – and of course Martin and Karen Lawrence who we all owe so much to for running this club so well.

  • Who is your biggest inspiration?

Definitely Maurice O’Connell. In my opinion Maurice is the most amazing runner in the club. His effortless running style and incredible race times should be an inspiration to all. He is also the nicest of running partners, and grows superb rhubarb! I hope I’m as fit and enthusiastic about running as Maurice is now when I reach his age.

  • How much does running with Redway Runners mean to you?

I have found a serious challenge that I love taking part in duathlons (10km run, 40km bike, 5km run). This involves a lot of training in both disciplines. Running with the Redway Runners has been an excellent way to train for the running element. I try hard to find at least 3 RR runs a week to take part in. These are always fun and the miles fly by much faster than running on your own.

  •  When and who do you run with the club?

I try and run Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. Luckily, my work pattern allows me to do this most weeks. The 3 runs are all different and provide excellent company. The coffee in Waitrose afterwards is becoming mythical!

YOU

  • What has been your best running achievement?

My greatest running achievement has been qualifying for the Great Britain 55-59 age group Duathlon Team. I have now represented GB 3 times (2 European and 1 World Championship). Hopefully more to come in 2017. I could not have done this without the structure and motivation provided by the Redway Runners. Especially after I had a partial Thyroidectomy in February 2013 and another throat operation in June 2013. The club played a massive part in me getting out running again and then meeting my goal of GB qualification within a year.

  • What is your running ambition?

Never be afraid to reach for the stars – I would like to win a medal in a GB kit before I give up. Progress at my age is slow, but I’m still getting faster so who knows!

  • Why do you run?

Easy – to keep fit, to meet friends, to get that fantastic feeling after a race when you have done well and hopefully help me with good health for as long as possible.

  • What would you do if you were not running?

More TV quiz shows! One of my most enjoyable club moments was being in the Redway Runners team that appeared on Eggheads. That was a day I will never forget.

  • Who have you seen while running?

I was lucky enough to get a place in the BUPA London 10K in 2010 and was in a pen right next to Mo Farah. When the race started he disappeared rather quickly.

  • Favourite place to run?

I just love running in Milton Keynes. We are so lucky to have such a fantastic running environment where we hardly ever have to cross a road (unless, of course, you’re on one of Martin’s classic runs when you get lost in the middle of nowhere!). I hope we never take that for granted.

  • What do you love to see while running?

The finish line.

  • Funniest running moment.

In 2010, as relatively newly reborn runners Martin Lawrence and I decided to do the MK March Half Marathon together for moral support. Everything was going great until we hit 12 miles in 1 hour 30 minutes and Martin said “I could get a PB here” and shot off on his own leaving me to struggle through the last mile in about 13 minutes. Luckily I can see the funny side now.

  • What is your favourite running track and film?

I never run listening to music. Just doesn’t suit me. My favourite running film is “Run Fatboy Run”. Classic.

  • Tell us about your worst run?

This year’s Furzton Relay. Embarrassing. I trained hard and peaked a few weeks before for the Duathlon World Championships. I then went on holiday, ate and drank my way through New York and didn’t do much running. On Relay Day I went flying off and swiftly ran out of puff. Had to walk in a race under 3 miles in length. Shows how quick you can lose your fitness at my age.

  • Best running phrase:

“Redway Runners, we run Milton Keynes”. Genius.

  • kevin-orchard-cross-keys-km-2Favourite running photo and why?

 

The photo of Martin and me in the 2011 MK March Marathon epitomises the spirit of the club in the early days – and don’t you just love those originals running tops? I also love this shot of me in my GB kit – and no, it’s not the May 2016 picture from the calendar!

 

 

 

  • Best route around MK?

Anything that doesn’t include “Hospital Hill”.

  • Who would be on your wish list to run with?

Definitely the Brownlee brothers. Legends.

  • Do you always round up?

Never

  • Worst/Best advice you’ve ever been given.

Best advice I’ve ever been given is to start all races slowly – advice I forget on every start line!

  • What do you think about when you run?

When it gets tough I think about what % of the route I have done and what % is left to do. I try and remember my fractions (takes a bit of doing) but helps in counting down what is left. It’s surprising how quick you get from a third to a half.

  • What cross training do you prefer?

I follow a tough training plan which involves copious amounts of biking (Wattbike in the gym or bike on the road), running and core strength 6 days a week. The most difficult for me is the core strength classes which really do help you perform better so I should do more. I also love the Redway Runner track sessions at Stantonbury. They would benefit every runner so I strongly recommend them.

  • Loop backs, love them for the social?

Loop backs definitely have their place at the club and I don’t mind them at all. The key is to stick closely behind the run lead when getting tired.

  • Would you change your job if the hours didn’t suit running?

I’m lucky to have been able to organise my work to meet my running needs. Strongly recommend it. Keeping customers and colleagues off your Facebook page helps.

  • Where do you log your runs and do you stalk others runs?

I have never got into logging my runs on any social media. I find it a bit intrusive and simply don’t like it. I never look at any fellow runners postings. Sometimes it’s hard enough getting out there to run so I really don’t want to add any pressure.

 

RACE/EVENTS

  • What was your favourite race and why?

2015 European Duathlon Championships in Alcobendas Spain – my first GB race. Fantastic to represent your country at my age. The race conditions were horrendous with thunder, lightning, hail storms and major flooding on the course. But I managed to complete (many didn’t) and came 11th in my age group. The feeling at the end was simply amazing. It was great that both my wife and good friend Martin Bousfield were there to share the moment with me. Unforgettable.

  • Favourite race distance and why?

For me, it is the half marathon. Great distance when testing yourself or just out for a social run. We’re also blessed with some good half marathons in MK through the year to aim for.

  • Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink?

I must admit to being pretty sad on this. I am very “OCD” before a race. I lay out all my kit the night before. I always have pasta and chicken the night before. I then have fresh fruit with yoghurt and a small bowl of nuts, honey and yoghurt about 2 hours before race time. I hate any type of sticky gel with a passion. Give me a banana any time. I use an Elivar sports drink in training and for races. The Endure range is specifically for over 35s and works for me before and during events. I also use Jelly Babies having convinced myself years ago that I could see spikes in my performance after taking them – but who knows? I have a glass of milk each evening before bed as it is supposed to aid recovery.

  • If you could choose anywhere in the world to run, where would it be?

Having run in many counties throughout my life I still haven’t run anywhere more comfortable (climatically, geographically etc.) as Milton Keynes. Although doing the Mauritius Half Marathon a couple of years ago was great!

  • Favourite parkrun and why?

Willen parkrun will always be my favourite. I was lucky enough to do the first ever Willen run and have been hooked ever since.

  • What’s your one race essential?

A banana just before the start.

  • Have you considered joining the cross country team?

In 2010 I broke a toe on a practice run for the Greensands Ridge relay so I’ve been keeping away from too many trail races since. So cross country has no appeal right now.

  • What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

PB every time, and if it is also a win even better.

 

kevin-orchard-gb-kit

On the run with Lauren Keeler

Name: Lauren Keeler

Joined Redway Runners: 2 June 2016

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is with fairly new recruit Lauren Keeler

Thanks Lauren

26 September 2016

**********

CLUB

When did you start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

  • I started running at school. I was pretty terrible and used to walk a lot but I used it as a good excuse to go and play in the mud around the old sand pits in Leighton Buzzard. When I got to university my friend Mary decided that she needed to fix my running technique (it was rather like Phoebe from friends) and thanks to her I fell in love with running. We were both in the Mountaineering Club so running at the time meant fell running in the rain when it was too wet to go climbing.

Have you run with other clubs how does Redway Runners Compare?

  • Officially no- but I do have a girlie running group of five that meet up from Newport Pagnell once a week. Redway is brilliant as people want to run all the time.

What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

  • I feel proud to represent a club when I race and in return I get an army of green supporters cheering me on (seemingly no matter where I race in the world!).

How much does running with Redway Runners mean to you?

  • A lot- I feel like I am part of a big family.

Tell us about your first time? (with Redway Runners)

  • I finally worked up the bravery to join RR on a Sunday run in summer at Salcey Forest. I was greeted by Paul (sorry I don’t know his surname) who has looked out for me ever since. The run was brilliant. I got to know some trails that I didn’t know and to my surprise it wasn’t so scary running as a group. Paul bought me a hot chocolate after and I was signed up from that moment on.

When and who do you run with the club?

  • I try to make Monday nights and Sunday mornings and then I just fit runs around work when I can. I am useless with names but I have run a fair bit with Sean, Martin G, Martin Lawrence and have been guide running with Annette Smyth, Suzy and Simon.

YOU

What has been you best running achievement?

  • Completing my first Ultra- the South Downs Centurion 50 miles in April 2016. It was the hardest race I have ever done and my whole body knew about it after.

What is your running ambition?

  • I’d love to get a Good for Age marathon time.

Why do you run?

  • Because I can.

What would you do if you were not running?

  • Swim, cycle, rock climb or take up something new. I dabbled in canoe polo for a while so could do that. I’d keep myself busy but I wouldn’t be doing my favourite activity.

Favourite place to run?

  • In the mountains. Failing that I love Rushmere Park.

What do you love to see while running?

  • Boulders, mud, sunshine and cake.

Funniest running moment?

  • Out with my running girls in MK about 18 months ago. We got a good distance into a marathon training run and the path was blocked. We didn’t want to add another 3 miles going around so we got down on our stomachs and slid through dust and gravel to the other side. We were still delayed as by that point we were in a fit of giggles.

Best running phrase?

  • Shut up legs.

lauren-keeler-2

 

Favourite running photo and why? (please send it as well)

 

  • There are so many! I have picked this photo of me and my husband Ollie at the end of Ironman Copenhagen. It felt good to be finished.

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think about when you run?

  • What to have for the next meal.

What type of running do you prefer and why?

  • Trail/ fell running. I love hurtling down a steep decline.

RACE/EVENTS

What was your favourite race and why?

  • I love the races that take place around the Ashridge Estate. There around a few of them ranging from 10 miles to 16 miles.

Favourite race distance and why?

  • Longer is better- probably half marathon or marathon.

lauren-keeler-1

This picture is of the three of use is at the end of the Centurion 50.

 

On the run with Pet Hedges

Name: Pet Hedges

Joined Redway Runners: 6 March 2015

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is Pet Hedges

Thanks Pet

19 September 2016

**********

CLUB

When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

  • March 2015

Have you run with other clubs how does Redway Runners Compare?

  • Not run with another club.

What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

  • The unconditional love, help and support that everyone gives all the time – I feel part of a big green family.

How much does running with RR mean to you?

  • It means everything to me – I would never have achieved all the things that I have done so far without the support and encouragement from everyone in the club.

Tell us about your first time? (with Redway Runners)

  • I was a bag of nerves when I got to David Lloyd as I had no idea what to expect, and I was truly terrified that I was far too slow and would hold everyone up. So I chose Leigh’s step up run….and loved it. Loved the fact that no one got left behind, and that everyone was so chatty and friendly. I haven’t looked back.

When and who do you run with the club?

  • I try and do Monday evening club run, Tim’s Explorer run on a Tuesday, Neil’s Wednesday 6pm run if I get out of work in time, and some of the Sunday club runs.
  • The list of who I run with is too long to list here – there are so many lovely people who I run and chat to – special mentions to Janet and Paul who I do most of my training with – and also everyone who comes out on a Thursday evening at Woburn woods, where we are guaranteed to get very lost and to laugh!!

YOU

Tell us your history of running?

  • Just over 2 years ago I had a prolapsed disc in my spine which meant that I was in agony every time I sat down. The physio that put me back together pointed out that due to my height, unless I did some exercise that would build up my core strength, the disc would prolapse again. So I chose running. I had never run before, but set myself a target to run a half marathon in the year I turned 50 (which was last year). Somehow 1 half has turned into 16 so far, and also 2 marathons and 1 Ultra. Loads of 10Ks, a Wolf run and the Paras 10 run (which is the run that the Parachute regiment new recruits have to do as part of their training). I have more marathons and ultras planned this year – and still need to decide on next year’s challenge.

What has been you best running achievement?

  • Being able to run over 50 miles a week regularly!! I never dreamed that this would be possible when I first started. An immense thank you has to go to Jen Sangster – she is always there for me with lashings of encouragement, help, advice and training plans!!

What is your running ambition?

  • To carry on enjoying my running as much as I do at the moment. Still need to decide on next year’s challenge J

Why do you run?

  • Because I can!! It has become part of my life. I get to see my friends a lot, stay fit and healthy, and it’s a brilliant way to de stress after a hard day in the office.

What would you do if you were not running?

  • I would probably be out and about walking my dog, or horse riding. Phoebe (my dog) comes out running a lot with me now, and I fit in horse riding as and when I can.

Favourite place to run?

  • Anywhere off road!

What do you love to see while running?

  • Beautiful scenery and wildlife

Funniest running moment?

  • Too many to mention, and they generally happen on our Thursday evening runs around Woburn woods.

What is your favourite running track and film?

  • Don’t have either!

Tell us about your worst run?

  • This has to be the Oakley 20 earlier this year. It was very warm, very hilly, I was running with a shin splint issue and it seemed never ending. Never again!! Nice hoodie though!!

Best running phrase?

  • Run the mile you’re in – don’t worry about what’s still to come.

pet-hedges-1Favourite running photo and why? (please send it as well)

 

  • Even though the Oakley 20 was my worst ever run, I did get my favourite photo from it – Janet and I crossing the line together. We had both struggled at times through the race, but somehow we managed to catch each other up and get us moving again. There was no way I was going across the line without her!!!

 

 

 

Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?

  • No – luckily I haven’t.

Best route around MK?

  • I have a 10 mile route around some of the bridleways from Bottledump roundabout, up round the prison, round Crownhill and back.

Who would be on your wish list to run with?

  • I’m lucky, as I get to run with everyone on my wish list all the time – all club members J

Do you always round up?

  • 99% of the time – yes

Worst/Best advice you’ve ever been given?

  • Running, nutrition and resting should form the 3 points of an equilateral triangle. It doesn’t matter if it’s a big triangle (if you are covering a lot of miles) or a small triangle (a smaller number of miles) – but the triangle should always be equilateral. And the importance of stretching properly!!

What did you learn from your first marathon, and what would you change?

  • That you must listen to your body and go with what it tells you. And that it’s ok to walk.

What do you think about when you run?

  • Anything and everything

What cross training do you prefer?

  • I go to sweat yoga 3 times a week

What type of running do you prefer and why?

  • Slow gentle trail running – you still cover the distance but you get the chance to enjoy the scenery.

Loop backs, love them for the social?

  • I don’t mind a loop back or two on a social run. It’s a fantastic way to keep everyone together – but I generally choose to do a Club run on a Monday so I don’t have any loop backs after a busy running weekend.

Would you change your job if the hours didn’t suit running?

  • No, as I would always find alternative times to run.

Run to time or distance?

  • Distance!

If you don’t share your run in social media, did it happen? Where do you log your runs and do you stalk others runs?

  • My runs are shared uploaded to Strava – if it’s not there, it didn’t happen J

RACE/EVENTS

What was your favourite race and why?

  • New Forest Half last year – stunning scenery, brilliant organisation with lots of local support, ran with the ponies….literally…..and the miles just seemed to disappear.

Favourite race distance and why?

  • Ultras – you get fed every 10K!!! Yes – I love food!!!

Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink

  • I always have a high calorie breakfast of granola and porridge with fruit before a long run. Apart from that I’m not always very organised, so can usually be found running around in a panic hoping that I haven’t forgotten anything.

If you could choose anywhere in the world to run, where would it be?

  • I don’t really have an answer for this, but I tend to try and take opportunities to run in different countries as and when I find them. I am running in Berlin this year and Paris in 2017 so far – there will be more J

Favourite parkrun and why?

  • I have only ever done Willen and Blickling (in Norfolk). I would have to say that Blickling is my favourite – it’s around the grounds of a National Trust property, and is so pretty.

What’s your one race essential?

  • My Camelbak – lots of pockets to fill with snacks!!

Would you run a marathon without getting a medal?

  • I might do if it was cheap to enter, and had alternative freebies at the end!!

Have you ever cried because you couldn’t get time of work for an event?

  • No

Have you considered joining the cross country team?

  • Yes – but don’t think I am good enough!!

What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

  • Considering I have never won anything (and am never likely to) – a PB!!

 

Redway Runners

On the Run News

We have done a few now ‘On The Run with ….’ articles on the club web site and they have been really popular – but we need more  club members to do them, do not be shy share your story.

 

If you can help us fill in this document (opens in Word) on-the-run-with-questions-v1 just fill in the questions that you can / want to do and send it back to us with a couple of photos – mail it to the club at rr@redwayrunners.com

 

To read the other Redway Runners stories click here

On the run with Andy Collins

Name: Andy Collins

Joined Redway Runners: 4 August 2014

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is Andy Collins, not seen enough of Andy’s dry humour in the club recently with his injuries

Thanks Andy

1 September 2016

**********

CLUB

When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

  • I started running in late 2011, after deciding I was old and fat! Been lazy I signed up to run the Silverstone Half in 2012 to keep me motivated. It wasn’t until I had the stupid idea that turning 40 meant I had to run a marathon that I joined RR though in Summer 2014. There’s only so many 2-3 hour long runs you can do on your own, leaving from your front door before you start to border on going mad.

 

What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

  • Other than the like-minded people you meet and befriend! One of the good things about been an RR member is the guaranteed cheering squad at just about every race you ever do.

 

How much does running with RR mean to you?

  • Means loads J helped me get over some very personal difficult times knowing I have the release of running with the club

 

Tell us about your first time? (with Redway Runners)

  • Oooh my first time… cheeky… it was a warm Sunday morning from Westcroft. I was a bit nervous, worried I’d do something silly not knowing any group running etiquette or be so slow I’d hold everyone up.. But everyone was very friendly, made me feel so welcomed and the loopbacks meant I needn’t have worried about been too slow.

 

When and who do you run with the club?

  • Tough this! It seems I’ve been injured from running forever. But I always enjoyed intervals and the Sunday long run and was quite getting into the un-official MK parkrun early lap which a few from the club do. I look forward to getting back to all these and more as soon as I can.

 

YOU

Tell us your history of running?

  • No long history, I was always the last to be chosen for sports at school, had no passion for any of it. But as I got old and fat, a photo taken at work made me think I had to do something and running is simple to start not needing any real investment (that all changes though! Ridiculously expensive when you love it and racing, shoes, the latest garmin etc…)

 

What has been your best running achievement?

  • I think helping a friend get a PB at MK festival of running earlier this year. Well that and that time I won a trophy for coming 3rd in a race… 😉

 

What is your running ambition?

  • Currently I’ll settle for running again J but once that happens I’d like to get my training to where it was at the beginning of this year and do a sub 90min half and possibly think about a good for age marathon!

Why do you run?

  • It’s fun, I also find it very meditative, really clears the mind and forget anything else that’s going on in the world

 

What would you do if you were not running?

  • Drink wine.

 

Who have you see while running?

  • I assume you mean celebrities? I really don’t recognise people so I could have seen loads and would never know. I did once cross the finish line at Sliverstone Half (2015 I think) around Iwan Thomas, but didn’t know that till I saw the finish times after. I was quicker then him… that’s right I beat an Olympian…

 

Favourite place to run?

  • Not a place, but I love running in the rain. A full on storm even better.

 

What do you love to see while running?

  • Hills

 

Funniest running moment?

  • Probably doing Mk festival of running half in a pink tutu, the crowds loved it.

 

What is your favourite running music track and film?

  • I don’t listen to music when running anymore, but like to have Eminem – Lose yourself, on repeat before a race I want to PB

 

Tell us about your worst run?

  • Don’t dwell on them, just remember the good ones.

 

Best running phrase?

  • Hills are your friends

Grumpy pig and friendship

Favourite running photo and why? (please send it as well)

  • A selfie of me a grumpy pig and Sinead at Stowe ultra half marathon! I think this shows the fun, weirdness and friendships that running can bring to your life.

 

 

 

Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?

  • Sort of at the moment. Not able to run properly due to injury, and it’s been so long I just wonder if I want to put all the effort back in to start again! What am I doing about it, stalking runners on FB and Strava seeing all their achievements helps. I’ve also joined the help the beginners FB page and hope to be able to help out at a few of the runs and feed off the positiveness of the beginners’ improvements. I also signed up as a Z2H mentor (before I broke and lost my mojo a little) so seeing how well my mentee is doing makes me want to get out running again so I can run with her

 

Best route around MK?

  • Probably the millennium route

 

Who would be on your wish list to run with?

  • Steve Way. He’s like a much better runner version of me! Came to running later in life used to drink and smoke far too much. I think if he ran backwards so I could keep up it’d be fun.

 

Do you always round up?

  • Nope, I have been known to when training and my schedule says do x miles but other than that I don’t usually even look at my watch till after I’ve saved the run.

 

Worst/Best advice you’ve ever been given?

  • Best: Do intervals. No matter what your running goals intervals will help you achieve them
  • Worst: Running is bad for your knees!

 

What did you learn from your first marathon, and what would you change?

  • That not everyone has that moment of euphoria as you cross the line! Even with random people coming up shaking your hand saying amazing we did it. Still felt a bit nah! All that training and that’s it what now…

 

What do you think about when you run?

  • Nothing absolutely nothing. It’s joyous

 

What cross training do you prefer?

  • I do cycling and yoga. Like both.

 

What type of running do you prefer and why?

  • Depends on my mood, but usually longer slow ones!

 

Loop backs, love them for the social?

  • Have a love hate relationship with them, they are good keeping everyone together and means that you can run some of the run with faster or slower people than yourself so is great for that, but they do knock you out of your stride a little so think they make long runs a bit harder

 

Would you change your job if the hours didn’t suit running?

  • One of the great things about running is it can fit around everything else in your life and there are enough club runs that I’d think whatever hours I did there’d be something I can make. Although I’d love Friday mornings off.

 

Run to time or distance?

  • Generally, I run to distance. But both have their merits depending what you’re training for.

 

If you don’t share your run in social media, did it happen? Where do you log your runs and do you stalk others runs?

  • NO. My runs are on Garmin and Strava.

 

RACE/EVENTS

What was your favourite race and why?

  • Lochness Marathon, my first marathon and stunning scenery

 

Favourite race distance and why?

  • 10 miles. Only done one… but you can run it at your dream half marathon pace and still make it to the end

 

Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink

  • Listen to Eminem – lose yourself, several times. Take my asthma inhaler, use a nose unblocker if it’s an important race means I’ll just be getting over a cold!
  • Food wise for halves and up I’ll have a strawberry jam bagel an hour or so before. And then a few gels during.

 

If you could choose anywhere in the world to run, where would it be?

  • There’s a glass bridge in China quite fancy running across that! Or anywhere with nice views.

 

Favourite parkrun and why?

  • Never done it before but Father Collins parkrun in Ireland is going to be my favourite when I get there.

 

What’s your one race essential?

  • Safety pins…

 

Would you run a marathon without getting a medal?

  • No. Well maybe, depends would have to be some sort of memorabilia on offer though

 

Have you ever cried because you couldn’t get time of work for an event?

  • Nope, it’s never been an issue and I can’t imagine an event been that important to cry over.

 

Have you considered joining the cross country team?

  • I love the cross country team, had never done cx before the club started doing it, went to every race the first season, think I even scored points the one time all the fast RR’s didn’t turn up J Unfortunately last season I only got to a couple of them, but hopefully do them all again next season.

 

What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

  • I’m only racing against myself so a PB. But there was that one time I came 3rd and won a trophy that was quite amazing, and although it was a PB at the time I have since gone faster so can understand the draw to wanting to position well as that’s forever where as a PB isn’t. Plus you get trophies… they’re cool

 

OTHERS

What question should we have asked you?

  • Have you perfected running with a full wine glass yet?

Me at CX

On the Run with Adam Sharman

Name: Adam Sharman

Joined Redway Runners: 31 December 2013

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is Adam Sharman who ‘trains’ with us at many different runs due to working shift – he certainly has been steaming with his running recently

 

Thanks Adam

25 August 2016

**********

CLUB

When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

  • I started running in 2013 and joined the Redway Runners in early 2014.

Have you run with other clubs how does Redway Runners Compare?

  • I have also run with the Sweatshop running Club.

What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

  • The best part of being in a running club is the friendships we make and the encouragement we all give each other.

How much does running with RR mean to you?

  • It means a lot to me, without the Redway Runners I definitely wouldn’t have achieved the things I have.

Tell us about your first time (with Redway Runners)

  • It was a cold Sunday morning in January 2014. I hadn’t run more than 5km before and I turned up and tried the hour option. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming. I really struggled for the second half of the run but everyone was so supportive and a few people ran slowly at the back with me. It must have been ok because I kept going after that first run.

When and who do you run with the club?

  • I try to make all the club runs that I am available for, but my regular runs are Monday and Thursday evenings. I also try and run on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings if I’m not at work.

Adam Sharman club kit 1

YOU

Tell us your history of running?

  • I started running in late 2013 to try and lose a bit of weight. I wrote to Willen Hospice to see if I could run the London Marathon for them as it was too late to enter via the ballot. I was accepted, but having never run more than 5km I had a lot of training to do. I joined the Redway Runners in the January and trained up until the marathon in April 2014. Since then I have run 109 parkruns, 10 Half marathons, 15 marathons and 2 Ultra marathons.

My daughter Layla started asking if she could run with me at parkrun but I told her she had to wait until she was 4 years old. As soon as she had had her birthday I took her to mk junior parkrun and she absolutely loved it. I bought her a green Redway Runners shirt so we could wear the same when we ran together. She still kept saying she wanted to do a full parkrun with me. At the start of May, 2 weeks before her 5th birthday it was going to be my 100th parkrun, so I told her we could run it together for my 100th and her 1st parkrun. She did amazing and we completed it in 42 minutes. Hopefully she will continue to enjoy it and run with the Redway Runners in years to come.

What has been you best running achievement?

  • I think my best running achievement is completing the Race to the Stones 100km Ultra Marathon. It was so well organised and I recommend it to anyone that wants to challenge themselves. I’m really proud of this and still can’t quite believe I did it.

What is your running ambition?

  • To try and run 5km in under 20 minutes.

Why do you run?

  • I started running to lose weight but now I do it because I love it. I think I am addicted!

What would you do if you were not running?

  • I used to play football in my youth so I would probably try to find a local team that needed a very average player.

Who have you see while running?

  • During the London marathon I saw a number of celebrities including…. Ewan Thomas, Michael Owen, Sophie Raiworth

Favourite place to run?

  • Definitely Willen Lake. It’s less than 2 miles from my house so I quite often run to parkrun and back.

What do you love to see while running?

  • I love to see any wildlife whilst out running. It’s so nice to be out and see animals in the wild.

Funniest running moment?

  • Getting lost on two of the races I have done! I followed someone at a Chaps Chase that wasn’t part of the race and went completely off course. And then at the OU relay I started a second lap without realising and did 1.6 miles instead of the normal 1.

Tell us about your worst run?

  • The last marathon I did in July was the worst run. It was a double so I finished one marathon at 8:50pm on a Thursday evening and then started the next marathon the following morning at 8am. I had been feeling ill during the build up to the two races and I had to give up at about 8.5 miles due to sickness. My first DNF.

Best running phrase?

  • Miles of smiles.
  • If you are able to talk you are not putting enough effort into the run!

Favourite running photo and why?

  • At Race to the Stone in July 2015Adam Sharman Race to the Stones

Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?

  • Only after my first marathon and that was the post marathon blues. I trained and everything into that race and once it was over I didn’t have anything to train for. It took me about a month or so to really start running properly again.

Best route around MK?

  • MK parkrun at Willen Lake.

Who would be on your wish list to run with?

  • I would love to run with Mo Farah, but I think I might slow him down slightly!

Do you always round up?

  • Yes, I always round up. I have my Garmin set in miles and always have to round up to the nearest mile!

Worst/Best advice you’ve ever been given?

  • Bets advice given – If you are training for one specific race, book another one for a few months after so you still have something to train for after the race.

What did you learn from your first marathon, and what would you change?

  • I learnt that pace is irrelevant during the training runs. You should try to do the long training runs at about a minute per mile slower than race pace.

What do you think about when you run?

  • I try not to think about anything whilst I’m running. I love just going out and clearing my head. During a race all I think about is my times and if I’m on course for my targets that I set out before the race.

What cross training do you prefer?

  • I like to ride my bike but not great at it.

What type of running do you prefer and why?

  • Favourite type of running is the long runs.

Loop backs, love them for the social?

  • Loop backs are brilliant, they really helped me when I first started as I was at the back but didn’t ever get left behind. And now I’m a bit faster, they are just as good because you can get more distance on a run even with a set route.

Would you change your job if the hours didn’t suit running?

  • No, I wouldn’t change my job.

Run to time or distance?

  • I try to plan to do a set distance before every run.

If you don’t share your run in social media, did it happen? Where do you log your runs and do you stalk others runs?

  • I personally have to have it logged on Garmin connect and Strava. If I run without my watch I do feel like it hasn’t happened after.

RACE/EVENTS

What was your favourite race and why

  • My most memorable race was my first marathon in London 2014. I had trained hard and only started running specifically to run that race. It was an amazing atmosphere and something I will never forget. I had all my family come down to support me and everything went as I had hoped.

Favourite race distance and why

  • My favourite distance is the marathon. As tough as they are, it’s the slowest race pace possible, and although they can take a number of hours you don’t get out of breath running them.

Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink

  • No pre-race rituals but always have porridge and Belvita breakfast biscuits the morning of a marathon. Before parkrun I very rarely eat anything.

If you could choose anywhere in the world to run, where would it be?

  • America. I have never been and would love to do the New York marathon one day.

Favourite race/event and why?

  • Gold Coast Marathon in Australia – I have family down under and went over there for my cousins wedding. I didn’t even know the marathon was on and just signed up two days before when I heard about it.

Favourite parkrun and why

  • Favourite parkrun is Main Beach parkrun on the Gold Coast in Australia. You run along the beach front at 7am and watch the sun rising, it really is amazing.

What’s your one race essential?

  • My Garmin. I need this every race to keep an eye on how I am getting on. I feel naked without it.

Would you run a marathon without getting a medal?

  • Yes, I did actually run the Green Sands Ridge relay race as a solo runner. It was the best part of 35 miles and we didn’t get a medal but it was my first Ultra marathon and I’m very proud of that.

Have you ever cried because you couldn’t get time of work for an event?

  • No.

Have you considered joining the cross country team?

  • I have considered it but I always seem to be working on the Saturdays that cross country is on.

What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

  • I have never won a race and am not fast enough to ever do this, so I think I would settle for a PB.

Kamran up the volcano

Club member Kamran went hiking to Damavand and said it was a breathtaking experience! This is not a volcano, but a monster of a mountain with her own weather.

Kamran Aug 2016 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They were enjoying a mid Summer day until hiked to her foot hills, where they encountered heavy rain and hail: a cold Winter day! It snowed every day, yet managed to get to 18,300 ft on day 3 (after 7 hours of hike) but ultimately pushed back by heavy snow, blizzard and low visibility.

Damavand is majestic but ruthless, so they paid respect and returned to the base camp 5 hours later, feeling humbled but exhilarated by the force of her nature! Kamran said ‘I have become a convert and will return to pay homage to this sleeping beauty next year!!!’

Anyone fancy joining him next year?

Kamran Aug 2016 1

On the Run with Janet Maidment

Name: Janet Maidment

Joined Redway Runners: 13 May 2013

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is Janet Maidment, who it has been great to see come right through the club from nervously joining to seeing her terrified when her name come out of the hat to do the London Marathon from the club ballot.

 

Thanks Janet

**********

CLUB

When did start running and when did you join Redway Runners?

May 2013 when I joined week 3 of a beginners group

 

What’s the best thing about being in a running club?

The camaraderie and support. Knowing there is always someone there to run with.

 

How much does running with RR mean to you?

A lot. I’ve made the best friends through the club.

 

Tell us about your first time (with Redway Runners):

I went along to wk3 of a beginners group and was shocked to discover we had to run for FOUR minutes (walk two). That was about three and a half minutes longer than I thought I could run for. Really struggled but persevered and went back the following week!

 

When and who do you run with the club?

Usually Monday’s, sometimes Thursday intervals and often Sunday long runs. I try and get to track when I can too. I run with lots of different people but special mentions to Pet, Paul, Suzy, Angela and Lorraine who always keep me going.

 

YOU

Tell us your history of running?

I didn’t run from the age of 13 when I developed asthma and always used it as an excuse not to! I watched my husband run and supported at marathons for years and had absolutely no desire to run. One day I just thought I would give it a go. Now I wish I’d done it sooner than aged 36! I went from beginner to marathon runner in three years.

 

What has been you best running achievement?

Running the London Marathon in 4:49 before my 40th birthday!

 

Who have you see while running?

Most people know I’m pretty oblivious to everything whilst running so who knows who I have missed out on seeing!

 

Favourite place to run.

At the moment it’s up in the woods – anywhere trail.

 

What do you love to see while running?

People smiling!

 

Funniest running moment?

Just recently a few of us managed to get ‘lost’ in the woods and ended up in the middle of Woburn Golf Course whilst it was hosting the Women’s Golf Open. A run I will remember for a long time as there was so many laughs, fence climbing, trying to negotiate our way back and just enjoying running!

 

Tell us about your worst run:

Great North Run 2015. I just didn’t enjoy it. Too busy, boring route and my personal worst half marathon time.  

 

Best running phrase:

You never regret the runs you do, just the ones you don’t.

 

Janet pic 2Favourite running photo and why?

Two – 25k into the London Marathon and I stopped for refreshments, finish photo with my medal!

 

Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?

Yes! Post Marathon Blues are the worst! I found it again by learning to enjoy running with friends who make me smile and reminding myself it’s not always about pace and PB’s.

 

Do you always round up?

Hmm, generally yes unless I’m dying. Often to the nearest half (and a little extra for Strava)

 

What did you learn from your first marathon, and what would you change?

I learnt that I am capable of running a marathon – who knew?! I wouldn’t change anything (except maybe having more faith over the last six miles that I had it in me to finish!).

 

What do you think about when you run?

Nothing – it’s one of the reasons I love to run

 

What cross training do you prefer?

Yoga, very complementary to running

 

What type of running do you prefer and why?

Trails and intervals for different reasons. Trails are just fun with no pressure, Intervals are hard work but you get to stop (generally) after a short time – I like that

 

Loop backs, love them for the social?

Loop backs have their time and place. I didn’t enjoy them during marathon training so tended to avoid them then.

 

If you don’t share your run in social media, did it happen? Where do you log your runs and do you stalk others runs:

If it’s not on Strava it didn’t happen! My runs automatically log to Garmin Connect, Strava and Fetcheveryone. Of course I strava stalk people!

 

RACE/EVENTS

Favourite race distance and why:

Half marathon. Because although it’s still hard work I can go at a more comfortable pace which is beneficial being asthmatic.

 

Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink:

Cup of tea and an instant porridge. Home-made flapjack if it’s a long race.

 

Favourite race/event and why:

London Marathon. It was just an awesome event, the crowds, the support, the medal, the feeling of being #oneinamillion

 

Favourite parkrun and why:

Glossop parkrun. Although it’s a three loop course and I generally dislike loops, the course has varied terrain and it just made me smile the whole way round.

 

What’s your one race essential?

Asthma inhaler! Without fail I carry it with me.

 

Would you run a marathon without getting a medal?

Well I done Oakley 20 to get the jumper so yeah, I guess so!

 

Have you considered joining the cross country team?

I’ve considered it. The racing aspect puts me off rather than the mud!

 

What would you prefer, a PB or a win?

Well as I’ll only ever win a novelty race (backwards running anyone?) it has to be PB.

 

What is your next race?

I am doing Bournemouth Half in October and then I’m signed up to Paris Marathon in April 2017. There’s currently talk of a possible trail ultra for 2017 too!!

**********

Janet

10 August 2016