Weekly News

Club Member of the Month:
Junior. Congratulations to Maeve Robinson, who’s this months winner of Member of the Month. A regular racer in the under 13 age group, she always puts in maximum effort. Well done on your nomination this month. Enjoy spending your vouchers at Up and Running.

Senior. Helen Sawyer is our senior member of the month. Helen has had a particularly busy year so far, one of the highlights being the Comrades Marathon. Not sure why it’s called a marathon as it’s over 55 miles long, but Helen ran it in an amazing 9 hours and 48 minutes. Helen is become an ultra specialist as earlier in the year she also participated in the Brecon to Cardiff Ultra, 70km long, finishing in around 8 hours.

Helen is also a committed club member, regularly training on a Monday and Thursday. She will also be out on Mark’s Wednesday water tower runs. Well done Helen.

Club Pavillon Refurbishment. Any feedback club members can provide relating to the refurbishment of our club house at Blaise is most welcome. For example, are you particularly keen on having the showers improved or would you rather have more toilet facilities? The plans are available to see inside the club house and will be available to see on Facebook soon. Any comments you have can be submitted to Jim via email to: chairman@westburyharriers.co.uk

Punctuality Reminder. Please try to get to training on time on a Monday evening. As the summer progresses the start times are slipping from 7pm to quarter past! Please be ready to hear the announcement and run for 7pm. Many thanks.

Club Championship Rankings. Judy has updated the club championship leader board, which also includes points for volunteering at the Blaise Blazer and Westbury Wipeout.  Current rankings can be seen by logging into the Westbury Harrier website. 

Also a polite reminder that if you’ve competed in a club championship event then now is the time to record your time and placing.  I know for a fact that some individuals have already competed in a number of events but not yet recoded a single result. Please don’t leave it to March, otherwise I may name and shame!

Bitton 5K. As I’m talking about the Club Championships just a reminder it’s the Bitton 5k along the Bristol-Bath cycle path this Wednesday evening. Hope to see you there. Link to 5k Easy Runner Summer Series 5k Website

GWR Towpath Series 10k. The Mob Match takes place on Friday 19th July. This event is not about super speedy runners but club participation. The more runners we have, the better chance we have of winning the match. Last year we were beaten by Bristol and West, Southville, Bitton and Clevedon. With more runners we should be able to achieve a podium place.  

Volunteer Roles. We are still in need of a Website Manager. If you have experience of managing websites your help would be very much welcomed by the club. Let the secretary know if you’re interested, secretary@westburyharriers.co.uk

Training Tip of the Week. I’m afraid I was struggling to come up with a quirky and interesting running fact every week so Jeni has provided me with a number of training tips instead.

And Jeni Stevenson certainly knows what she is talking about when it comes to training, she does represent Great Britain after all!

 Jeni competed in the European Biathle Championships in Madeira in late June, and before you ask I’ve not made a spelling mistake. A Biathle is a continuous run-swim-run event. In the Madeira event Jeni ran 1200m, transitioning to a 100m swim in the sea, followed by a final 1200m run. 

Jeni was running in the Master Ladies age group, winning a sliver medal in her category, meaning she is second placed out of all the European competitors. A fantastic result!

Anyway, a couple of training tips for you this week, kindly provided by Jeni.

Have A Break From Running Often the best way to revitalise your run is to take a break from the activity. Obviously we are not saying that you should throw in the towel on exercise altogether, but instead try cross training to maintain your fitness. Perhaps there is a sport you have been wanting to try for awhile, such as yoga, cycling or swimming, but have been unable to because of your running schedule. Give yourself a chance to take part in other forms of exercise and when you do start running again, you’ll likely find that you return feeling energised and that you enjoy your run more.

Top tip has to be correct footwear. Tennis shoes with minimal cushioning are definitely a no-no but equally, replacing your running shoes once a millennium is off the agenda too. Good quality, well fitting, functional running shoes are a must and if you only make one investment in running equipment, this one is essential. Depending on your weight and the shoe, modern running shoes will last from 300 to 800 miles (approx 500km to 800km) and will protect your feet, skeleton and muscles. When purchasing, always visit a specialist running retailer who will advise you and allow you to test them before you buy. All Westbury Harriers members get 10% off from Up & Running on North View on ALL products.

Who Does What?
The reason Westbury Harriers is a success is due to the commitment and dedication of all its members. This is particularly true for those in the club who act as committee members, group leaders and regular volunteers. Many of you may not be aware of all the work that goes on behind the scenes and the individuals that make things happen.

As a new feature club roles will be explained with a short biography of the person in post. This week it’s yours truly in a short Q&A session. 

Role: Club Communications
Name: Ian Gawinowski

Q. My first question for you Ian, what made you decide to join Westbury Harriers?

A. Well, I used to volunteer for the Avon Wildilife Trust, but when they stopped weekend volunteering opportunities I had some time to fill. I always dabbled in running, but never took it very seriously so why not make it a proper hobby?  After a little research I discovered my local running club (WHs) had their training sessions just up the road from me, very handy!  I’ve now been a member of WHs for just over two years.

Q. Ian, why, after such a short time in the club did you take on a committee post?

A. Immediately on joining the club I started competing in a lot of club championship events. After each event I would always post a summary on Facebook, giving a brief resume of the race and the results.  This was noticed within the club and I was nominated as Member of the Month, winning some running vouchers. Oh yes, at the same time I was asked to take on the vacant communications role. I couldn’t really say no, but it proves there’s no such thing as a free gift!

Q.  What does club communications involve?

A. It’s really about keeping everybody in the club informed about what’s going on. This can involve upcoming races, club championship events, results, relevant talks, safety information, club notices, anything really.

I achieve this through a variety of methods. You are probably most familiar with the Weekly News e-mail. This is useful as it summarises the most important news, especially events that are coming up within the next week or two.

The WH Facebook page is also a useful tool. This is most useful for providing the latest news in more detail with photographs, links, etc, plus you have the opportunity to provide feedback. Don’t forget to look in the Events section of Facebook as it lists everything that is coming up in a chronological order. It may be races, talks or just key dates you should be aware of. We also now have a public Facebook page, so please direct you friends and family to this if they want to communicate with the club.

You will see me training and competing with the club, so if you have any questions feel free to ask me. If you would also like me to include something in the Weekly News do let me know, contributions are most welcome.

Q. Why do you keep running with the club?

A. I enjoy the training, and structured sessions on a Monday and Thursday mean I’m less inclined to skip a session. It’s also a lot easier to push yourself in a group than when running alone.

I also never realised the huge amount of races you can do. I’d heard of the Bristol 10k and Half but was amazed by the number of local races going on. Although at my age I’m never going to win a race I do enjoy competing against others in the club. I’m normally chasing the heels of a few in the club and very pleased if I can creep past them on the finishing straight!

Q. What is your favourite discipline and distance?

A. I don’t really have a favourite discipline, I’m more of a  ‘jack of all trades’.  I suppose if I was to be pushed I would say the trail races as I enjoy the variety of terrain and scenery.

In terms of distance I’ve done everything, from 5k up to marathons and achieved most of my finishing time goals. The one thing that has eluded me so far is getting below 40 minutes for a 10k, at the moment only 20 seconds shy!

Q. And your favourite event?

A. Has to be Man v Horse because it was so different from everything else I’ve done. Having to dive into the hedgerow to avoid a charging, riderless horse,  well it gets the adrenaline going.

And so you know who I am here’s a recent photo of me in freefall mode, at the Rowberrow Romp. Photo thanks to Jeremy Hutchinson from TACH.

Congratulations Well done to Alex Hamblin for second place in the Friday Towpath Series. With two wins and a silver Alex is in a good place to win the series. I will be keeping my fingers crossed for you at the Mob Match.

Amazing performances by Ken Lovell, Paul Gladding and George Hancu, on a hot a sultry Saturday, completed the Ham and Lyme 50k ultra. 

Photos below: Svetlana getting some ‘big air’ as she tackles the mountain bike circuit at Ashton Court. The Saturday Water Tower runs are a leisurely social run, starting at 9am, from the Water Tower on the Downs. All welcome.

Ken, George and Paul, after completing the Ham and Lyme 50k Ultra.

Diary Dates 
Saturday 27th July Fast 5000’s. https://www.entrycentral.com/Fast5000s

Sunday 25th August Severn Bridge Half Marathon (& 10k) 

Sunday 6th October Keynsham 10k https://keynsham10k.fullonsport.com/event/keynsham-10k-2019/profile

5th – 11th October Running Week in Nice

Championship Events
Wednesday 10th July. Bitton 5K. Bitton 5k Link  

Friday 19th July. 10k Towpath Inter-Club Mob Match.  GWR Towpath Link

Friday 9th August. 5k Towpath Series. GWR Towpath Link

Sunday 11th August Standish Woodland Chase. https://www.stroudac.co.uk/StandishWoodlandChase

Wednesday 21st August Crook Peak Cake Race. This race is held every year on the  Crook Peak Link. Entry is on the day.

Sunday 1st September Ross on Wye 5K. http://www.ross10k.co.uk/register.asp

Sunday 15th September The Simplyhealth Great Bristol Half Marathon. Discounted club entries with 20% off the normal price. Carol Fee will provide details of how to enter via the club scheme shortly. Instructions will be published soon.

Saturday 28th September Portishead Coast Path 10K. https://fullonsport.com/event/portishead-coast-path-10km–2019/profile

Saturday 12th October Gwent League, Cardiff. Team managers will provide details nearer the time.

Sunday 27th October. Nightingale Nightmare

Saturday 9th November (or possibly Sunday 10th November). Gwent Cross Country, Pembrey Country Park. Team managers will provide details nearer the time.