Rob’s weekly blog and training update w/c 03/02/2020

REMEMBER TO BRING YOUR 2020 MEMBERSHIP FORMS. See either myself or Trish

 Ideally bring the form back and then please pay by BACS to: Natwest Acc 556137 06224598

“Liv weekly blog” – see below

Also, FULL LIST of Championship fixtures for 2020 – Note Spring Coast 5k has moved to 28th April

Message from the chair:

Last night Tom broke Joshua Fothergill ‘s record of 11:20 set on 26th Sept 2018. A fantastic time Tom Levi 10:53 !! There’s a challenge son for when you come back from your travels.


Glaisdale Rigg, Glaisdale pub (start 10:30am); check necessary kit list


Briefing at 7pm, Thirsk School Thirsk School Gym. Clean shoes please. Rolling core work inside

Outdoors. Duncan and Ken are taking an outside group. Hopefully back on the school fields

TUESDAY 4TH FEBRUARY (social run*)

Social run from Thirsk and Sowerby leisure centre at 7pm (meet in foyer) on well-lit paths and pavements. Suitable for all abilities; there will be several stops to run back/regroup, no-one runs by themselves or gets left behind. New and returning Tuesday night runners always welcome.

Route to be decided on the night, around 5 miles. Please wear high vis.


6.45pm School sports hall.

Sonja is back!! Tonight you are in for a treat so please, don’t be late!! .    

Inside : Lung busters

Outside group. 6 x 3mins/ 1 min rec 5k pace.


7pm sharp, Starting from Sneck Yate (easy 10.7k 😉.

Bring a clean t-shirt and some beer tokens for refreshments afterwards.


Rosie Gatenby is aiming to complete her 100th Park Run at Fountains Abbey this Saturday; please come and support her on this wonderful achievement.

Message from the head-coach:

Since Christmas I have been running my weekend long run on either a Thursday or Friday night mainly because the trails are good, and the weather is so mild. This can sometimes mean I’m a little tired when I compete, but it gives me time on a weekend to spend with Christine and the Grandkids and also trying to keep everyone happy. It also has the advantage that I can train at a higher intensity during the core work on a Monday night because I’m not so tired. It’s all a matter of fitting it all in and at the moment it seems to be going ok


Harriers, Lakes weekend, Glaramara Hotel in Seatoller, Borrowdale. A fantastic weekend in the Lakes to enjoy, running, walking and relaxing amongst friends.  Rooms still available and can be booked directly with the hotel on 017687 77222.  If you would like to know more about the weekend, please speak to Helen.

When booking ensure you say you are from Thirsk and Sowerby Harriers.


Trail Series – starting at 10 am, enter on the day

Race 5 – 23rd February – Holme House Prison 5k Trail (All the money for this event goes to charity)

Holme House Rd, Stockton-on-Tees TS18 2QU

Series Presentation Race 6: 22nd March – Saltburn 5k Trail (TBC)

Fell Races (check necessary kit list)

Feb 2nd – Glaisdale Rigg, Glaisdale pub (start 10:30am)

Feb 23rd – Heartbeat Hobble, Goathland village hall (start 11:00am)


Club Championship fixtures

Feb 23rd – Holme House Prison, Stockton, 5k Trail – Sun am enter on the day

Mar 1st – XC Croft

Mar 29th – Hartlepool Marina 5- entries open now

Apr 28th – Spring Coast Road 5k – TUESDAY evening, 7.15.  Flat! Entries open Jan 1st

May 6th – Gribdale Growler Fell Race (Wed evening)

May 19th – HDSRL Nidd Valley (Tues evening)

May 31st – Ripon 10

June 18th – HDSRL Ilkley (Prov) Thursday evening)

June 25th – HDSRL Skipton (Thursday evening)

July 12th – Kilburn 7 (Sun pm)

July 26th – James Herriot 14k (Fell) – Entries open

Aug 9th – Darlington 10k

Aug 19th – Sessay Swift 6k (Wed evening)

Sept 13th – Tholthorpe 10k Entries open

Sept 27th – Redcar Half Marathon

Oct 25th – Whixley 10k

Nov 1st – Guy Fawkes 10 – Entries open

Nov/Dec – XC to be arranged

Other Races

Feb 9th – Muddy Boots 10k, Ripon. Speaks for itself.  11am

May 24th – Melmerby 10k start 11:30am

Liv weekly blog

PART III: AFTER ALTITUDE TRAINING (little experiment in 2016)

I went for a run and it seemed windier than usual. With every stride the wind slapped me in the face. However, it wasn’t the British weather being predictable British weather. In fact, it wasn’t actually windy at all. I was just running faster than usual…

The effects of training at altitude usually last about two weeks when back at sea-level. Trying to ignore the pestering jet-lag, I was excited to give my hemoglobin-filled legs a whirl at the local park run. Clustered at the start line, I was surrounded by happy joggers, a black Labrador and a man pushing two prams (one with each arm). What I didn’t expect was that I almost felt like an imposter… or at least like I had done something wrong. Is this classed as cheating? Judging by how easy my easy run was yesterday, even stood at the start-line I knew I was going to get a PB. But it’s OK! Altitude training is legal! I kept telling myself. But is it a faster way to get faster? Time to find out…

I knocked 18 seconds off my Fountains Abbey Park Run, turning 19.51 into 19.33. Half joyful, half critical – it seemed more of a tempo run than a race-pace and I definitely had some left in the tank at the finish. But, a PB nonetheless. Plus, I must save myself, for next week is what I’ve really been waiting for… The Half Marathon.

Like many runners, I had put far too much pressure on myself. The ‘just enjoy it’ advice seemed to be buried and violently punched by the fact that I had just spent nearly 3 months altitude training… GIRL, YOU BETTER RUN FASTER THAN USUAL.

My over-ambitious 1 hour 30 goal was about to be put to the test at the Windsor Half Marathon. I say over-ambitious because it means knocking a chunky 9 minutes off my previous best time. However, night-before-nerves were settled by reminding myself what Coach Andrew Kastor tells his athletes before a race: “The hay is in the barn.” Basically meaning, don’t worry. All the hard work has been done. It’s time to race.

I realised when running those 13.1 miles what has physically happened to my body this summer – stronger quads, more resilient calves, bigger lungs… Well, all that is secondary really. The main thing I believe I have gained from the experience of training at altitude is the mental attitude and strength. During mile 7, as my focus began to dwindle, I remembered the feeling I had in the mountains on my ‘easy never easy’ run, with snot and dribble smearing across my cheek. Push on, push on, reach that feeling. Then at mile 10, as I began to doubt that I would have the power to reach my goal time, I remembered the positivity that surrounded all the athletes at Mammoth Lakes. I can do this. I will surprise myself. My body is amazing. I told myself.

So, is altitude training a faster way to get faster? I believe so, yes. But you can also reap the benefits by pushing yourself on a more regular basis when training at sea-level too. The most important thing is to have self-belief – both during training and during races. Set goals that scare you.

Thanks to training at altitude, I knocked 10 minutes off my Half Marathon time. I ran Windsor Half in 1 hour 29 minutes. On a euphoric high, I am now hungry for the next race. But first, a chocolate milkshake, please.

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