Weekly News – Monday 13th January 2020

Upcoming Events

English National Cross Country Championships. There is a coach available on Saturday 22nd February to take us up to Nottingham. If you, friends or family would like to book a place on the coach please let Tamsin know via Facebook or Manager.women@westburyharriers.co.uk

Club Supper

The first for 2020 will be on Monday 20th January, 8pm at the Black Swan. Do let Louise know if you’re attending (via Facebook) and £6 is to be paid before the event. It’s a chicken casserole and a three bean cassoulet. Either via bank transfer or direct to Louise on a Monday night.

Club Championships

The next event is only across the bridge so no excuse for not running. It’s a Gwent League event taking place at Chepstow Racecourse on Saturday 8th February, possibly the first time they’ve used this course? It’s being hosted by Bristol and West AC. I’ve just had a sneaky peak of the course and it looks as if we run on the horse racing circuit, let’s hope the going is firm! If you’re interested in running do let your respective team manager know. I’m sure a callout will go out on Facebook shortly.
For event details see link Gwent League Chepstow Link

Member of the Month Winners

The committee gathered last Friday and the nominations were reviewed with the following winners.

Junior. Well done to Hannah who races in the under 15 category. Hannah has shown real dedication and determination in training and competing. So far she has raced in every single Gwent League, competed in the Tri Counties, South West Championships and the Bristol Schools Cross Country. She also regularly attends training every Monday and Thursday. Congratulations.
Senior. The senior winner this month is Jane. She is a regular runner with Group 6 and has improved significantly in the last few months. She often leads the group and is especially encouraging to others. She too regularly attends training on a Monday and runs on a Thursday in Sandra’s group. Well done.

Thursday Training Sessions

The club are keen to hear back from members who have feedback that can be used to improve the training. Do let us know what you do or don’t like. What sessions do you enjoy or find useful or what would you like to see less of. How do you use the training session? Do you have any particular goals that you would like to see incorporated in the training? Please provide feedback to Tamsin (manager.women@westburyharriers.co.uk) or let us know on the Thursday evening.

Social Runs

Saturday Water Tower Runners. Due to renovation work at the cafe on the Downs next Saturday the runners will be meeting at an alternative location. The run will start promptly (like it always does!!) at 9:00 from Brackenwood Garden Centre, Abbots Leigh, Pill Road, BS8 3RA. Post run we will make use of their tea room.

Race Reviews

Rogue Runs Night Race Series: I’ve not written one of these reviews for ages and as I enjoyed my night race last week it made sense to include a write-up this week.

I thoroughly enjoy off-road trail runs, getting out into the countryside and combining it with running is one of my favourite things. I also enjoy running different courses as you never know what to expect. And of course I love doing something that little bit different and quirky, such as Man V Horse. But what I’ve never done before is raced at night so I just had to sign up for the Roguerun night race.

Now, if you’ve run off-road you’ll know how challenging it can be. Tree roots, mud, steep climbs and treacherous descents all add to the challenge. Combine that with running in the dark and you’ve got a real exciting mix. I took part in the Beechhurst event and the organisers created a very technical circuit. I was quite surprised when they took us ‘off-piste’ through woods, some really muddy sections and even a river crossing. Trail shoes are essential!

A good head torch or running light is also needed. The night I was running we had a full moon but you don’t benefit from it when running in the forest. They organisers do advise against wearing reflective clothing as it can be rather dazzling to other runners. You won’t need to be seen after all, you’re completely off-road at all times.

There’s no chance of getting lost either as the organisers mark the course with reflective tape and arrows. Your headlight beam will clearly light up these markers along the course. Lots of marshals are also well placed providing encouragement and directions. On my race I was also running along with 250 others so you’ll never be alone. In fact it’s quite an impressive sight when you look over your shoulder and see 200 plus lights all bobbing along.

All the runners get in the spirit of the event too! Fluorescent glow in the dark face paint is mandated. You can also cover yourself in the supplied glow sticks! Plus you get a free drink, cake, medal and the chance to be entered in spot prizes.

The next event is on Thursday 6th February in Chepstow. Then the final run is Friday 27th March at Speech House, Forest of Dean. Perhaps next year we could include one of the races in the Club Championship series? If a few of us turned up we might even win the team award?

Runners gather before the start of the Night Race. Photo thanks to Tosh K Simpson.


To me! On Friday I ran the RougeRuns Night Race at Beechenhurst in the Forest of Dean. I’m pleased to report I was the first Westbury runner to cross the finish line (although I was the only Westbury member running it, but it still counts!) See my race review for more details.

Yesterday we had another Club Championship race, the first for 2020! Approximately a dozen Westbury runners were slogging it out over a very muddy Riverbank Rollick course near Thornbury. A challenging circuit of approximately 10 miles. See Facebook for results and photos.

Interesting Running Fact of the Week

Beetroot may improve your running performance, the purple vegetable has been proven by St Louis University to benefit runner’s speed. Their study investigated the running speed of participants who completed two separate 5k distances on a treadmill. Before the first 5k, the runners ate baked beetroot and before the second, they ate cranberry relish.
The study found that after the runners had eaten the beetroot, their average speed was 12.3km per hour (7.6mph), in comparison to 11.9km per hour (7.3mph) after they consumed the cranberry relish. The nitrates present in the beetroot are thought to be the reason behind the improvements.
Source: Realbuzz.com

Diary Dates

Saturday 25th January. Midland Cross Country Championships. (the club has in the last few years focused on the South West XC, rather than the Midlands).
Saturday 25th January. Welsh Coast Path Run. Church Bay to Penmon Point. If you are not aware some of us have been running the entire Welsh Coast Path. We are now on Anglesey and plan to push a little nearer to the finish. Normally run approx. 20 miles on Sat, and again on the Sunday. You don’t have to do the full mileage and the pace is always slow. (Coffee stops) Travel up on Friday and stay in airbnb Fri/Sat nights. Everyone welcome. If interested let Colin know via his Facebook events posting.
Friday 31st January. Run Fest: The Series. 18:45-22:00, Shirehampton Public Hall.
Thursday 6th February. Rougeruns Night Race. Chepstow race course.
Saturday 22nd February. English National Cross Country Championships, Nottingham (juniors/seniors).
Saturday 21st March. Midland 6/12 Stage Road Relays, Sutton Park.
Saturday 4th April. National 6/12 Stage, Sutton Park.
Saturday 16th May. Masters Road Relays, Sutton Park (Over 35’s).

Club Championship Events

Saturday 8th February 2020. Gwent League Event, Chepstow Race Course.
Sunday 23rd February. River Avon Trail 10k. A stunning off-road, multi terrain course which will incorporate thrilling trails, open countryside and woodlands.
River Avon 10k Link
Sunday 1st March 2020. Gwent League Event: Singleton Park, Swansea.
Sunday 15th March. San Domenico 20 miler.