The Beginners Are Progressing Quickly
Having completed their three mile, non-stop run last Wednesday evening (9th January), Jane Stein, Nikki Gosney and Lee-Ann Thomas all received their 3 mile certificates from Head Coach Tim Mitchell. They had no idea of the events that would unfold in the evening that lay ahead writes Hamish Spence.
The three ladies ran with the beginners group to give moral support to the five other group members that were taking on the non-stop 3 mile challenge.
As the group headed along Livonia Road, one of the ‘challengers’ became unwell. So, with some quick thinking and without anyone stopping, Nikki made the very helpful call to lead the others in the group on around the route. This enabled another five more members of the Beginners Group to complete the non-stop three mile course, while Jane, Lee-Ann and Terry looked after the casualty.
Happily, it all turned out well and Terry said a sincere thanks to our three new members who absolutely embody our ethos at SRC. Without their quick thinking, the evenings attempt would have been thwarted.
A few weeks ago a new 14 (ish) mile challenge came to my attention and it was right on our doorstep writes Hamish Spence.
One of our Mighty Green distance runners told of his early morning jaunt on a newish trail that takes the participant on a picturesque journey into some of the most beautiful countryside around the town of Sidmouth. A trail that goes through parts of the town into woodlands, forests and villages. It weaves across heathland and fields, meanders along tracks and country lanes and over a few hills with stunning views. I had a feeling that this trail might catch the eyes of others in the Sidmouth Running Club.
I was not wrong and it wasn’t long before others in the Mighty Green tribe had reported that they too had completed the trail. Then I overheard a plan for an early Sunday morning mission to take on the trail on the last Sunday of January. A mixed ability group of eight set off at just after 8am from the Sailing Club for a steady run and warm up along the esplanade. It was then a slow climb up the Bickwell valley to Ice House Lane and a long tiring climb up Core Hill Road. Here, it’s a left turn and a climb over the first of many styes for the first bit of off-road running. It was straight into a boggy field and needless to say we all got wet, muddy feet, a theme that repeated itself many times. The trail skirts through some woodland and then up onto Fire Beacon, but not to the trig point. It was then through the woodlands to White Cross along the East Devon Way. At White Cross we turned right through a gate and descended down the hill to the pretty village of Sidbury. We followed the main road, turned into Bridge Road, over the bridge immediately turning right at the cottage. This was our first stop, drinks and snacks were consumed and photos were taken. Pushing on along Deepway we passed the cemetery and headed on through Buckton Farm to Harcombe. The route then took us around Knowle House and a hard climb up Paccombe Hill to the A3052.
After crossing the road we made our way towards the coastal path through the Donkey Sanctuary and Dunscombe Manor finally arriving
on the coastal path to be greeted with a cold head wind and a bit of rain. They group was spreading out a bit here with myself taking up residence at the back and beginning to wonder if i would be bowing out. My pace slowed to walk for half a mile
The coastal path took the group into the small village of Salcombe Regis and after the church, we turned left up the hill towards the monument. I managed to catch the group up again here just before they reached the junction to turn left through the woodland. We continued onto the Frogstone as a group again along the Coastal Path to Salcombe Hill via the trig point down into Sidmouth.
There have been more groups taking on the Sidmouth Ring since our group ran it, with a large group led by Terry Bewes doing it last Sunday (2nd of Feb). Some members have even tried it out in reverse and found it that the hills were much steeper that way around!
Shoe choice is a bit of a problem with over 4 miles running on the road. When it’s very wet, as it was on Sunday, the off-road sections were very slippery, so could have done with full studs. However they are not ideal on tarmac. We recorded various distances between us, but it’s just over 14 miles with the diversion around Alma Bridge. This is an excellent route and challenge with some beautiful views.
After a great season of Off Road running, we found runners relaxing in the Kings Arms after the last Monday Off Road run. The whole club is very thankful to John and Ben for leading some spectacular runs! In this post we have added some photos of the first Road runs of the year.
The club welcoming the latest younger runner to join, Daniel Beauchamp, at one of the club’s scenic Wednesday evening runs.
Charlotte leading her first run with the 4/5 mile group
Mighty greens are still enjoying the lovely weather and beautiful views on their Wednesday evening runs.
Every Friday, a small group of runners mostly made up of Sidmouth Running Club members get together for a morning jaunt. They meet up in various locations in the East Devon Area for a five to six mile run. This Friday (5th July) a blue sky morning, fifteen runners and one K9 all congregated at Stantyway Farm near Otterton. They set off for the cooler air along the Triassic stretch of the of South West Coastal Path. This group is for a more leisurely paced experience so good views are always written into the schedule of the route. This gives the participants a chance to stop and just think, a chance to catch their breath or even for photographic opportunities. The group headed on towards the mouth of the River Otter, crossing it at South Farm Road and on up-stream for about half a mile to another foot bridge across the river. A short zig-zag over the hill and back to Stantyway Farm for a cuppa, cake, cookie and chatter.
The first session for the Juniors got started on Sunday the 9th of June on the playing fields of the Sidmouth College.
Leaders of the Juniors, Kerry Boyle and Claire Ashby, will being showing the FUNdementals of athletics to the group of 23 youngster during the course. With mixed abilities and ages ranging from 8 to 12 years, the group has 11 girls and 12 boys.
During the warm up, the group looked into good running technique, included standing tall, arms driving and lifting the knees. The groups were then split into the 10-12 year olds with Claire and the 8-10 year olds with Kerry.
Kerry took her group to do some physical preparation which included learning how to do squats and balancing. With balancing the younger group played the Dice Game and Mirroring a partner. After the warm up they then moved into the main session which comprised of a running, throwing and jumping unit. With running they were learning how to run over obstacles, with the younger group establishing which leg they preferred to lead and also getting a feel of a good stride pattern between each hurdle whilst still retaining that tall posture. Next they moved on to the pull throw, which is the technique used in throwing the javelin, but we started with an overhead throw of a football, then bean bags and finally onto howlers. The last part (a group favourite), was jumping for distance in the sand pit. Initially they practiced doing a 2 legged standing jump, learning to use the arms to swing up, moving on to the one legged jump deciding on which was their stronger jumping leg and driving the other knee up, and finally jumping in the sand pit to see how far they could jump.
Claire’s group of 10 -12 year olds were a determined bunch and all worked very hard on the skills being focused on. They learned about finding which side of the body is more dominant and which foot is the easiest to balance on. This illustrated how balance and coordination are two of the essential skills for good running. They then practised hurdling, throwing and jumping.
Everyone had a great time and had a go at the activities and gave some great feed back. The children received an activity card, which they will hopefully all complete over the next 5 weeks.
Sidmouth Running Club is now taking full advantage of the longer evenings by meeting up on Monday and Wednesday evenings in various locations around our area. Last Wednesday with beautiful clear weather the club met at White Cross picnic area, taking full advantage of the views across the Otter Valley, and that was before setting off anywhere. This is a good venue to met up at, as there are many choices of routes. There are pancake flat routes along East Hill Strips or over to Beacon Hill. Then for the more hilly and challenging routes, heading down towards Tipton St John is an option, getting back up the hill tho, that is also an option! Which ever route is taken there are many good views of our rolling Devon countryside.