Rob’s weekly blog and training update w/c 20/01/2020

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


CHAMPIONSHIP RACE – NYSD Cross Country (Separate email already sent)

Ormesby Hall, Church Lane, Ormesby, Middlesbrough, TS7 9AS

Please use the Church Lane entrance to the Hall NOT the main gate entrance from Ladgate Lane.

Ormesby Hall cross country. See details attached. We will have a tent and I will bring some spare club vests for those who don’t have one. You need to register with your team captain (Alison will pick up the folder so please don’t approach the time keepers) if you don’t already have a number. Bring some pins to attach your number to your vest. I do have some spares but only as a last resort. It will be wet and muddy so expect a tough race but there are fast and easier sections too .


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

Outdoors. Ken and Duncan are taking an outside group. We will probably be on Topcliffe Road as the field is a little wet at the moment.

Also 7pm Swimming pool. Molly continues the walking and talking group.

TUESDAY 21ST JANUARY (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. I am usually all set up and ready to go by 6.45 for those wishing for a big session.  Inside rolling core work with 28 minutes of continuous effort. Cross over the hall in equal ability pairs. If we have a similar turnout as last week then there will not be too much room. Please be careful as you turn around.

Last Wednesday night we had a big, big session and everyone worked hard together. We will have one bigger one and then ease down the following week for a time trial. Please don’t waste this momentum, join in with all the energy around you. Let’s all improve and get stronger together.

Outside group. 2 x (2 x 4mins) / 1 min recovery (2 min recovery between sets).

Inside : Lung busters with Paul.

THURSDAY 23RD JANUARY (social run*)

7pm sharp, Starting from Sutton Bank visitors centre.

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


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 4 – 26th January – The Acorn 5k Trail

Acorn Sports Centre, Heythrop Dr, Acklam, Middlesbrough TS5 8QB

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

Jan 19th – XC Ormesby Hall – Can be muddy. Challenging – Sun am

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

Below is an article that I wrote a couple of years ago. It’s a 3 part thing, so more to come. Re-reading it, it makes me miss running more than ever before.

Altitude training: A faster way to get faster?


We, as humans, are always looking for faster ways.

Gone are the days when we contemplated between a first and a second class stamp. The carefully handwritten letter somehow turned into a fax, which, before we knew it, became an email. And now, sometimes an email isn’t quite fast enough. We are greedy speed demons. As we frantically refresh our inbox, we’ll send out a WhatsApp message too.

It seems, we are obsessed with the quickest way. Quick fix diets, quick fix facials, quick fix tooth whitening and stain removal.

I too, was after a faster way. A faster way to get faster. You see, I wanted to get quicker at running, but I wanted to see positive results in the fastest possible way.

I wanted to take a pill (a legal one of course) that will make me stride like Usain Bolt. Or drink a juice that will give me Paula Radcliffe’s mental attitude and pain threshold. Then I would buy a foam roller that will have healing powers so strong, injuries and niggles wouldn’t even bother me and I’d get a fast-track pass to the podium every time.

Failing this, I was up for giving a tried and tested ‘quick fix’ for runners a go…

Altitude training.

I’m a keen club runner. I’ll admit that I have had a good few years running, however, throughout 2016, my PBs had been a tad ‘stand still.’

Actually, ‘stand still’ may be rather complimentary. If anything, I had become slower.

BUT, ‘stand still’ / backwards no more. The mountains were calling and I was about to jet off to Mammoth Lakes, California (8,000ft above sea level).

Word on the street is that there is a great running community in Mammoth. The mission of the Mammoth Track Club is to support athletic and academic achievement, develop professional athleticism and promote lifelong health and fitness through running in a high altitude environment.

But what will actually happen to my body when I run up in the mountains? When training at altitude, levels of EPO (a hormone that stimulates the production of red blood cells) increases. Studies have shown that this increase can translate into a 3 percent boost in race performance. Better still, there is some evidence that non-elite athletes, who have a lower level of hemoglobin (the protein in red blood cells) may experience an even better and quicker boost than the professionals! (Great news for me).

The biological effects for a competitive advantage when returning to sea level, usually lasts about 14 days. When discovering this I thought, ‘Oh. Is that it?’ However, the mental strength gained from training sessions at altitude, are sure to last a lifetime. Most coaches recommend spending at least two weeks at altitude in order to gain noticeable fitness benefits. I was in a very lucky position where I had the whole summer to spare – so, ‘three months at 8,000ft it is,’ I thought.

But, why Mammoth? Since 2001, the Mammoth Track Club has built many national champions, Olympic medalists and record holders, including Deena Kastor (American female record holder for the marathon).

Both Deena and 2009 New York Marathon champion Meb Keflezighi can be found pounding the pavements here. “Such a challenge in training makes racing at sea level much easier,” says Keflezighi.

“The appeal is a combination of breath-taking scenery, challenging running routes and the community’s support of athletic endeavors. It’s also a place where snow-capped mountains, peaceful forests and bald eagles are often the runner’s only companion.” (


I was excited to meet the running community and couldn’t wait to get started. Can training in a climate where oxygen is limited, really shed seconds (minutes!?) off my times when I return to sea level?

Leave a Reply

Error thrown

Call to undefined function split()