November 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the November newsletter.  This month it’s a humdinger.  More advice in coaches corner, some fantastic race reports, Cross Country corner with John Palmer, Theresa’s piece on parkrun and exciting news from Karen and the Social Team.  Enjoy.


Coaches Corner by Sue Baillie

Good Posture, Good Form

Good posture and form allows your body to run more efficiently, which could mean you cover more ground with each step while using the same amount of energy. Also, with your motion better directed towards moving forward, you’re less likely to shift some of the pounding to body parts that aren’t designed to absorb it, and that should reduce your risk of injury.

The 2014 Boston Marathon runner Meb Keflezighi explains;

“It’s easy for poor running mechanics to throw your body out of whack by just one bad element in your running form, eg. If your head is thrust forward in front of your body rather than being in line with your shoulders and trunk, you might over-stride, lean forward too much or have longer ground contact time- or all three!

That’s going to lead to bringing your hamstring up more behind you than underneath you, which in turn, lead to cramping or injury & you’ll be slower”

5 Key body positions

1) Head; held level (as if balancing something on you head), looking 20-30m ahead, ears above shoulders, don’t let chin jut forward.

2) Stomach & Back; Engage your mid-section when running, some tension/tone in abdominal muscles holds good back posture without fatiguing the back muscles.

3) Leg swing; When your right leg leaves the ground and swings forward, your right foot should drive towards the level of your left knee. Reaching calf height is a good goal for people who currently shuffle. Doing so will make your body more upright and help you cover ground with each stride, without over-striding.

4) Landing position; Feet should land under your centre of gravity. If you over-stride with your feet landing well in front of you = you’ll brake slightly with every step and spend more time on the ground rather than transitioning quickly to your next step.

5) Arm carriage; Drive arms in the direction you’re moving, not across your body. Elbows bent about 90* hands move backwards to hip/waist.

Form check list

Pros run with a quick cadence and not much ground contact time. They work on 180 steps a minute. Count the number of times one foot hits the ground, a good target is 90, that equates to 180 steps a minute.

Drills improve running form by strengthening key muscles, improving range of motion, boosting the communication between your nervous system and muscles, and by making you more mindful of good form. Ideally performed a couple of times a week.

There isn’t enough space in this article to properly illustrate all the drills that would be beneficial, so I’m just going to highlight a few which you can see demonstrations of on YouTube.

5 Drills

1) Skipping; This increases stride length & knee lift and improve single-leg balance. Skip forward lifting knee to 90*, tuck foot up under bottom then kick foot out straight in front of you for 20m rest & repeat.

2) Grapevine step; This helped reduce ground contact time & give you a quicker, more efficient turnover. It can also improve knee lift and hip range of motion. Grapevine 20m then reverse direction back to start.

3) Jump, hop, hop; This teaches your running muscles to work in sync with each other, increases your push-off power, improving your ability to move in all three planes to motion & strengthen (often) neglected muscles. Jumps and hops cover a few meters in each direction.

4) Lunge; This builds strength throughout your core and improve your balance. Walking lunges 20m lifting knee to 90* then repeat walking backwards. Sideways walking 10steps each side with the lateral cross-over lunges.

5) Lateral squats; This engages gluteal muscles and improves your balance. Start squat with knees & feet together, step sideways & squat with legs shoulder width apart, moving 20m in each direction.


Goodwood (Sussex Cross Country League) by John Palmer

The first race of the Sussex Cross Country League season and following my recruitment drive we’re down to one-and-a-half teams in the men’s race and none in the women’s! I don’t think it’s me, just an unfortunate number of unavailable people for various reasons.

It’s an easy one hour drive (head for PO18 0PS, turn into the grounds, ignore the car parks until you spot the event on your right with parking just ahead)  and 6 of us turn up nice and early for the men’s race with the meeting already in full swing. Each head straight for the registration tent to sign up and hand over £5, then it’s time to erect the club flag, pitch the tent (a bit away from the other clubs’ as it’s a bit small in comparison) and prepare before starting our warm-ups. The ground’s looking firm so road shoes are the choice of footwear for some, but I wouldn’t generally advise turning up with this being your only option.


It’s a lovely October day at this point with the sun even providing some heat at times and after a while a whistle sounds to call us to the start. As we line up on a nice wide start line (I position myself towards the back row out of the way) there are a few presentations, no idea what I was applauding as the megaphone or my hearing weren’t the best. Then the gun goes bang and we’re off.

The course is two laps round some parkland and through some woods. Nice, although with one major bottleneck bringing at least my rear end of the field to a halt as we go into the woods. By lap two we’re spread out so it’s not a problem. This seems to be insurmountable as it’s been there all three years I’ve run it!

It’s an undulating run, with a longish not-too-steep but definitely uphill bit and a short fairly steep downhill in the woods, but nothing I can’t run all the way up or to scare me on the way down. The first aiders were in action though, so care needs to be taken. I take advantage of a nice point towards the end of lap one to look across and see a small stream of runners a good distance behind me. I’m fairly confident at this point that they won’t all be able to catch me on the next lap. And although one or two closer runners do go past, my occasional looks over the shoulder give no cause for alarm and I even manage to overtake someone towards the end.

And I’ve timed it nicely, as we pack up the flag and tent the first drops of rain start to fall but were away before the deluge.

It’s been a good day, I’m not sure how long the fast boys were waiting for me at the end but they seemed happy enough and we now wait for the results to find out where we stand moving onto Lancing on 12th November. Hopefully with a few more runners!


Yorkshire Marathon- 9th October 2016 by Alice Tellett

In my quest to complete 10 marathons before I’m 30, I thought it was about time I did one in my home county of Yorkshire. This was marathon number 8, and with a mere 7000 runners, was my smallest marathon yet.

As much as I admire many of the BHR runners for running some amazing off-the-beaten track marathons, a marathon to me still means mass participation, closed roads, high fives from thousands of spectators on-route, brass bands on the way round and great atmosphere. Yorkshire marathon delivered all of these, with the added bonus of being in the best county in England  🙂

I headed up to Yorkshire on Friday evening and upon arrival realised I had left my number in Burgess Hill, oops, so some of the Saturday was taken up visiting race HQ to pick up a replacement number. This did, however, allow me to locate the start of the race, right in the heart of York University Campus, where there is a picturesque lake set among all the concrete buildings.

Sunday Morning arrived, we had opted for the park and run option so we headed to Elvington Airfield to catch the bus to the start.  The race itself seemed to be littered with many club runners, but I was the only one in a BHR top.

Upon starting, the race heads straight into the city centre of York. At about 1.5 miles in we ran past the stunning York Minster, which had a great atmosphere, with many people cheering you on. We then headed out of the City of York into the countryside. Compared to the start, the next 10 miles or so were relatively quiet, but this allowed me to get stuck into a nice rhythm and take in the rural surroundings on quiet country roads. Just after the halfway point, the race doubles back on itself for the first time and this allowed me to spot my family who had come to support me. After a quick smile and wave the race started to head back to the City of York. This bit of the race went along a wide main road, which I have to admit was not the most interesting part. However, just after 16 miles the race doubled back on itself for a second time, at this point I realised, despite feeling like I was taking it quite easy, I wasn’t that far behind the 4 hour pacer, and my legs were feeling surprisingly OK.  After spotting my supporters again, the race finally left the main road and headed into slighter quieter village roads. From 21 miles onwards I had planned to walk-run the remainder of the race, but as my legs were feeling OK I opted to walk one minute, run 10 minutes, walk 1 minute, run 9 minutes etc. This turned out to be quite a good strategy of focusing my mind, and before I knew it I was at the 25 mile mark and I thought, what the hell I’m going run the rest.

The route itself is said to be ‘Yorkshire flat’, and despite a few short sharp inclines it was very flat to my seasoned Sussex legs, however there was a little bit of a mean hill at 25.5 miles. Halfway up the hill, however, I spotted a finisher wearing the race bling, it was huge, and naturally I sprinted to the end to collect my own.

The race finished right where it started, at the University, and there were thick crowds to cheer you in. Upon finishing you are presented with a medal, t-shirt, bag of goodies, a silver cape to keep you warm and a text message of your finishing time.

I was very pleased to finish in 4hr 10mins. A wedding followed by a 3 week honeymoon meant my training for the marathon was only 7 weeks long and furthermore it was interrupted with tendonitis. Despite this, I managed to beat my VLM time, which I completed earlier this year after 20 weeks of problem free training. Maybe taking time pressure off and not going all out at the beginning and a little ibuprofen gel on the legs helped me out.


I would highly recommend the Yorkshire marathon to anyone who wants to do a large autumn marathon in the UK. It’s relatively cheap to enter, is very well organised, lots of water stations, a nice medal, awesome atmosphere, great spectators and a lovely route.  I am still deciding whether to do this one again next year but do let me know if you need any more information.

Next stop if Rotterdam for marathon number 9.

Thank you for reading

Alice Tellett



We were staying in Corfu town in late September; On Sunday 25th I decided to go for a short run picking up the bread for breakfast on the way back.

Not long into the run I saw someone in a hi-viz jacket standing next to a jeep. Aha, I thought he looks like a marshal. I asked him what was happening and he explained in broken English there was a run around all the sights in the town starting in half an hour. He pointed to the start not far away.

I ran over and found it was a 14k race which I could enter for €15 . I had €16 with me so how could I resist. The entry form was all greek to me but everyone was very helpful and I was soon signed up. The numbers were printed on fabric- a first for me. A quick phone call to the family to say breakfast would have to wait,and I was ready to go.

It was due to start at 9 am but nothing happened. By this time it was getting warm. About 10 minutes later there was a briefing ,the important points of which someone kindly translated –follow the arrows and look both ways for traffic even if it is a one way street because everyone ignores the road signs.

At last the gun went and about 130 Greeks and I set off. First we meandered through the old streets of the town then it was up a cobbled path to the newer of two Venetian forts, round the fort and down again. The route then went to the south of the town, up a long hot hill on roads that seemed to go on for ages. It then turned down a track into a park, over a metre high wall that another competitor kindly helped me with, and along a narrow path through the woods which reminded me of the round hill romp, except for the weather of course.

We eventually got back to sea level and ran along the bay back towards the town and up the second Venetian fort which was higher and steeper than the first. The last 3 k were through the cobbled streets of the old town again. By this time a cruise ship had discharged its passengers who looked bemused as we weaved between them.

At last the finish arrived after nearer 15 than 14 k and a great handmade glass medal and a t shirt awaited. There was also a free beer and ham sandwich which were very welcome as I had only had a glass of water before setting off. Not good preparation even by my standards.

The results were posted a few days later .i became Suzan Nule and came about 1/2 way down the field but I could not tell you where I came out of the ladies as all the names were in Greek and I don’t know which are women.

It was a great race and I would do it again, but perhaps after breakfast next time. Flights to Corfu are very cheap in September so if you fancy a weekend away with a quirky sightseeing race I’d go for it.



Half Ironman 70.3 European Championship – by Rich Neale

Earlier this year, I competed in the IRONMAN 70.3 European Championship in Frankfurt. This includes a 1.2 mile swim into 56 mile cycle followed by a half marathon – with a 7 hour cut off time. It’s an incredible event to do, and the commitment is undeniable, with 5 hours of daily training (on work days!) it will take over your life!


Competitors from all over become one big family during the event – regardless of where you’re from, language, etc. Everyone helps each other round, high 5ing mid-course.

The emotions of the day can be mixed, at the start I was panicking about everything that could go wrong – only to jump in the water and suddenly start singing “just keep swimming” to myself like a kid.

For me – the cycle was most eventful, having a crash at 20 miles in (and they go fast!), but luckily the event staff are good and I was able to continue. The hardest section is always the run, however, many half marathons you’ve done – there is a real energy drain here. However, the support round is like any big marathon you’ve ever done x100 – an amazing boost that sees everyone to the end. If you’re into bling, you’ll get great medals, & pros continue to see everyone finish and congratulate.


This was my second half iron man, last year I did the full distance in Nice, and I’ve completed one Olympic distance. It’s made me laugh through it and broken me, and been the best feeling ever. At each finish I’ve said never again, but it’s addictive and now I’ll be completing Bastion full in 2017. Bring it on!

If anyone is thinking about competing in triathlons and wants advice, tips, etc. then please ask.


Royal Parks Half Marathon – 9th Oct 2016 by Steve Bird

This is the only London event that I’ve taken part in, it’s a really picturesque course which takes in a number of key London landmarks. Having really enjoyed this event in 2015 I was keen to run it again this year.

I arrived early at Hyde Park where there was loads going on, the festival area is huge so whilst there are lots of people about it doesn’t feel overcrowded. I caught up with some other runners at the charity tent before getting ready for the off.

Conditions were perfect, at 9 am just under 16,000 runners set off. The race starts in Hyde Park and there is a great atmosphere with lots of spectators lining the route.

My original plan was to run just behind a pacer until half way and then push on but after reading Jan’s Boston race report a couple of months ago I changed my mind. Instead I opted to run my own race and it definitely paid off as I settled straight into my target pace which I managed to maintain and ended up with a marginal negative split.

The route heads into Green Park and round Buckingham Palace, then along Birdcage Walk and St James’s Park. You then continue out to Aldwych and back along the Strand, past Trafalgar Square and Nelson’s Column. Then it’s through Admiralty Arch down the Mall and back through Green Park before meandering through Hyde Park for 4 miles. Then it’s into Kensington Gardens for a couple of miles before heading back to the finish in Hyde Park.


The course overall is flat, it felt like there were slight inclines in the second half but that might have been as I was getting tired. I managed to see Nat and Amber twice out on course which gave me a great boost and kept me going.

With so many runners taking part it was great to see Helen out on the course as we shouted a quick hello as we passed each other.

The atmosphere around the course was great again, I enjoyed the day even more this year, possibly because I knew what to expect out on course but also because I’m fitter and have continued to listen and learn more from others which has improved my running and in turn increased the enjoyment factor.

This is a really well organised and friendly event and one which I’d highly recommend. It’s certainly one that I’ll run again in the future.


Tigger bounceathon and Winnie the Pooh Wander – 15th / 16th Oct 2016 – by Helen Pratt

A very wet, early Sunday morning saw a little jog around Ashdown forest, dressed as Tigger. The running group Saxons, Normans and Vikings organise many events throughout the year, mainly in the Dover/Kent area.

As it was the 90th birthday of Winnie the Pooh they obtained permission from Ashdown Forest to hold a 2 day event in the 100 Acre Wood. Saturday, the Winnie the Pooh Wander and Sunday the Tigger bounceathon.


Both days had the same course. A 5.25 mile loop starting at Gills Lap car park – 2 miles one side of the B2026 and 3.25 miles the other side of the road.

It is a 6 hour timed challenge so it is up to you what distance is covered. The mind blower was to get the medal you only had to do 1 lap. 5 laps = marathon, 6+ ultra. You must start the last lap by 5hrs 30mins from the start although due to the overnight rain on the Sunday it was extended to 6 hours because course conditions were not so good.

The run started at 8:30. A quick briefing and celebration of some achievements of the runners and it was time to go. There were many who had run the ‘Pooh’ challenge the day before so there were many tired legs. Although not compulsory fancy dress is encouraged, there were several Tigger’s bouncing around the forest.

The course was well marked with tape, so as long as you kept your eyes open you couldn’t get lost!!

The course was up, down and off road. There was a steep hill to begin with which you then saw in reverse 2 miles later before crossing a road onto a slightly flatter terrain for 3.25 miles. The course went around the 100 Acre Wood, near Eeyore’s gloomy place, The North pole, The Heffalump Trap and Roo’s sandpit. The views and landscape were beautiful.

At the end of each lap you reported to basecamp where there was a well-stocked aid station – cake, crisps and sweets. It also had vegan food. Here you also got your lap card punched or ring the finish bell.

Once you have decided you have done enough laps you ring the bell. You get a great goody bag. I got beer or cider, a box of matchmakers, a bag of m&m’s, chocolate bar, crisps and more – And of course the medal. They know how to please a runner it was enormous.

The S.N.V events are very laid back but well organised and they are really friendly. Next year it will be Eeyore and Piglets turn for an expedition and plod.



Bright 10- 16th Oct 2016 – by Theresa Chalk

  • Entry fee £29 plus £2 booking for affiliated members.
  • No refunds, transfers or referrals.
  • No headphones.
  • 2 weeks prior to event, pack arrives with named number, attached timing chip and a useless baggage label (more seemed lost than used).
  • Stalls with an array of energy products.
  • Massage tables.
  • Guaranteed British weather (the forecast was wrong).
  • A few thousand entries (not sure precisely).

A 10 mile mainly flat route (lets ignore the little inclines that screamed at my hamstrings) along the coast of Brighton and Hove.

Starting point on Hove lawns. How far back you start is dependent on your pen which is designated by your finish time. I suspect they ran out of markers for mine, so I just stood with the few at the back.

9am started with a loop of the lawns, heading into Hove then back towards Brighton’s Madeira Drive. At this point it snakes back and forth heading towards Roedean (which is great for looking out for running buddies who are faster than you). Then happily jogging back towards the finish line, but not quite! Pass the finish to do another lap of the lawns and hooray the medal is in sight with volunteers happy to string it around your neck leaving your hands free, in my case to have a nose blow. Yuk really! Well it was windyish.

Results text in while I was waiting in line for a hot cuppa from the man with a van. Eyes bulging, couldn’t decide on which piece of cake to choose, so a piece of each it had to be. At £2.50 a slice I had to settle for a rather large chunk of Rocky Road and a hot chocolate, yummy!

Nice to have a 10 miler on your doorstep if a coastal run is what you desire.


Aldi Manchester Half Marathon – Sunday 16th October 2016 by Keith Brown

Another road trip for me this time to Manchester. This was the first half marathon in the city but they do have a very successful marathon which has been running for many years in April.

I arrived late on Saturday afternoon by train and had dinner in the city centre before taking a taxi out to the hotel which was located just 500m from Old Trafford football ground in the west of the city. This hotel was a perfect location for the race as it was literally 100m from the starting area and just a ten minute walk from the finish which was next to Emirates Old Trafford Cricket Ground.


The race morning was very wet with heavy rain falling whilst the 12,000 runners were congregating in the starting pens but luckily the temperature was way above the seasonal average which made this weather a bit more bearable.

I began in starting area D and was only two or three minutes ushering towards the start line. So from the off I felt good and ran very confidently on an extremely flat course run on very wide roads.

Just before mile 3 I heard a shout of “Burgess Hill, Burgess Hill” as a runner from Hailsham Harriers joined me for the next few miles when we even met, and overtook, a lady in a Horsham joggers top just after mile 7. It seemed Sussex was out in force up north.

The rain finally eased off and gave way to sunshine for the last 4 miles and I had the 1:50 pacer in my sights. I finished strongly and felt good as I crossed the line on Talbot Road adjacent to the world famous test match cricket ground and the Kellogg’s cornflake factory that produces over 1 million boxes of cornflakes per week!

There were very large crowds lining the finishing mile, sometimes 20 deep, who were offering terrific northern encouragement to all runners. My time was 1:52:46 which I am very happy with as it is my fastest half so far.


I really enjoyed this race which included a great finisher’s goody bag, medal and t-shirt. A very well organised, friendly race run through a great city and the locals offered plenty of support, wine gums and jelly babies!

The stats for the race are here:


Cross Country Corner by John Palmer

Welcome back, it would appear they’ve let me have another go and I’ll start with the next dates for your diary:

  • Saturday 12th November; 14:05 Women, 14:35 men; Sussex Cross Country League Race 2; Lancing Manor – just like the WSFRL event, give or take
  • Saturday 3rd December; 14:05 Women, 14:35 men; Sussex Cross Country League Race 3; Stanmer Park – a new venue for us all!

The Facebook events are up and the whole club invited, although please check the details carefully to ensure your running has reached a suitable level as it’s a step up from WSFRL and being a distant last probably isn’t much fun. If you’re not on Facebook just get in touch with me or Stuart Condie.

I’m pleased to say that we look like having a strong core squad fit, well and available for the next men’s & women’s races and already have some great additions so you won’t be the only newbie if you accept the challenge. If you are interested and want to know more please refer to the October Newsletter.

And so to Goodwood where an enjoyable afternoon was spent last month for the opening league race although we were short of numbers for various reasons. However, provisionally,  Jon Boxall (30:28), Paul Sargent (30:47), Jason Collett (31:48) & Andy Sayers (34:35) placed our men’s Team A in Division 2’s 6th place and Ian Jones ((36:50) and me (39:17) placed a depleted Team B 14th in Division 3.

I promised more events in this issue. Last time I just focussed on the league, which goes quiet in January due to a few other local XC events taking place. Watch out for further details but in case you want to pencil into your diary:

  • Saturday 7th January; Sussex XC Championships; Bexhill (TBC)
    • 5 miles men, 4 miles women (team and individual completion)
  • Saturday 21st January; Sussex Masters XC Champs; Lancing Manor (TBC)
    • 6 miles M40; 5 miles M50 & M60; 4 miles W35 & W45/W55 (team and individual competition)
  • Saturday 28th January; South of England XC Champs; Parliament Hill
    • 15km men, 8km women (team and individual completion); Closing Date 16th December
  • Saturday 11th February; SCCL Race 4; Hickstead
  • Saturday 25th February; ECCA National XC Championships; Nottingham
    • 12km men, 8km women (team and individual completion); Entries open January, close 7 weeks before event
  • Saturday 11th March; UK CAU XC champs and world trials; Loughborough
  • Sunday 26th March; World XC Championships; Lampala; Uganda!

You’ll notice that the distances get a bit tougher on these events. Personally, if I turn up it will be with my camera rather than running shoes unless I’m feeling exceptional when the Masters comes round!

I haven’t gone into the U11, U13, U15, U17 & U20 races available in the league and some of the above events. We do have runners capable of competing, congratulations to our juniors on a comprehensive winning the WSFRL with a race to spare. Please discuss with Stuart Condie if interested.

That’s all for now, except to note:


Accessing the Members Area on the BHR website

Just a reminder that you can access the members area on our website by scrolling to the bottom of any page in the website, and clicking on “Sign in”. The page will re-open, and you will see a button at the top of the page next to the contact us button, marked “members page”

Everyone who is a member of the BHR Google groups can access this page, and it contains information such as AGM and other committee meeting minutes, the club’s accounts, the current door code for the school, policies and newsletters.  If you are missing something, please let us know.


parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk and Allison Willcox

Headlining this months Parkrun corner is a  write up about our newest run director.
Allison Willcox .
img_0116Ali fancied having ago at this volunteering role and wrote this piece about her experience.

Confessions of a newbie Run Director!

Armed only with my limited previous experience as a marshal at a few running events, I had no idea what lay in store for me as Run Director of Clair parkrun. I can only say it was a great experience and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The core team was on hand throughout the event to advise, answer questions and generally be around to make sure there was full support to ensure smooth running.

Being a bit on the shy side with strangers, yes you did read that right, I surprised myself with chatting freely to people who had visited Clair parkrun for the day and found myself enjoying asking about their running experiences, my own running, and sharing about our club.


For me, the biggest nerves were about making the announcements but again, the core team made sure I had guidelines and as I had chatted to a few visitors, knew there were lots of people to make welcome. It was also nice to be there on a milestone day for one of our BHR members on their 50th Parkrun.I will certainly volunteer for this role again and its definitely something I’d encourage others to do as you’ll see a whole new way to being a part of parkrun.So thank you Clair parkrun, for letting me be a part of your team, I had a ball!


Did you know?

parkrun is the worlds largest running event and its free.  So far in 2016 over one million have walked, jogged or run it.

Did you know?

If you volunteer 25+ times you get a free tee-shirt. a nice colour purple with 25 on the back.

Did you know?

36,301 different people have handed out finish position tokens to park runners at UK parkrun events, all the more appreciated as the temperature begins to drop and their hands feel the chill.

Did you know?

If you run 50+ times you get a free milestone tee-shirt.uk_home_middle

Did you know?

Clair parkrun is happening on Christmas day this year. Start your day dressed as a reindeer or Christmas pudding, or whatever you fancy. I would say there would be free mince pies too.

Happy autumnal running

Theresa C


Social events by Karen Harvey

Thank you to everyone who is coming along to the quiz. It will be great fun and there’s prosecco to be won!Our next event is:

The Christmas Party – December 10th 2016 – Hassocks Golf Club – “2016 – that was the year that was”

Buy your tickets from here:

Please also send your favourite BHR photo from 2016, any runner, event, group pic to;

Also, on 21st december, there is a club run with chrsitmas theme, with mince pies and mulled wine and the draw for marathon places

Social events planned for 2017:


AGM and awards night


Marathon Breakfast

Marathon Meal


Summer BBQ


brewery/vineyard tour

Possibly a new event tbc


Greyhound racing



Running factoids for your delight – supplied by Andrew Baillie

An average man has enough energy in his fat stores to run non-stop for 3 days at 24km per hour. That’s FAST considering about 10-12km per hour is the average pace general punters run at.

Over 1 billion pairs of running shoes are sold world-wide each year.

Physically active people have a 60 percent lower risk for Alzheimers disease than coach potatoes (The Lancet Neurology Sweden)

In the feet, 26 bones, 33 joints, 112 ligaments, and a network of nerves, tendons, and blood vessels have to work together when we run!

Cadence is extremely consistent among professional runners, usually between 185-200 steps per minute! If you are doing less, you may not be working efficiently enough!

In a recent study, when asked what food they couldn’t live without, most runners named bananas as their most adored foodie fix!

The most common injuries runners experience are runners knee, stress fractures, shin splints, Achilles tendinitis, muscle pull, ankle sprains, and plantar fasciitis.

The best prevention strategies for running injuries always include strong body, good form, and the right shoe.  Keep up the core work everyone!

The runners high is not a myth! Runners high describes the feeling of euphoria or release of anxiety you can experience while running.

Physical therapy treatment for running injuries includes massage, strengthening muscles, and giving yourself rest time don’t stint on the rest time!


Once again, a huge thank you to all of the contributors.

Without them, we have nothing to publish.

Please come forward with ideas, articles and reports to help make our newsletter go from strength to strength.

Thanks, Neil and the newsletter team.


October 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the October Newsletter.

This month we have some brilliant race reports, Social news from Karen, Coaches Corner from Sue, parkrun with Theresa and a piece on the Cross Country season from John.

I think that it’s the best yet.  Enjoy.


Coaches Corner from Sue Baillie

Snakes and Ladders of the Weight Loss Game

People take up running for lots of reasons, but weight loss and control seems to be frequently cited as a prime reason, even though it’s probably not the reason they keep running!

If your weight is an issue for you here are few Snakes to avoid & Ladders to climb to help you on your journey.


  • Research in “Obesity journal” found each sports drink consumed daily equated to a 0.315 rise in BMI units over 2-3 years.
  • Sitting at work raises women’s BMI, but the men’s BMI didn’t rise, as fat weight replaced muscle, as reported in “Prevention Medicine journal”.
  • Ohio State University researches documented that “not recognising your emotional espouses to food can lead to weight gain”
  • Recent research showed that your mother’s grandmother’s& great-grandmother’s exercise habits while pregnant affect your chances of gaining weight.
  • Over rewarding with a post run refuelling treat is a classic error, keep an eye on your calorie balance.
  • A recent longitudinal study of 33 years reported that only doing the minimum of the recommended 150 minutes/week of moderate exercise won’t keep the weight off.
  • Strangely, a lack of colour contrast of food on your dinner plate means you’ll eat roughly 200 calories more per meal, researchers found. They think it’s due to an optical illusion that affects perception of meal size.
  • Many recent studies have linked lack of sleep to weight gain, possibly due to sleeps effect on the hunger regulating hormones Ghrelin & Leptin.
  • Don’t chop and change diets! A study review reported in Journal of the American Medical Assoc found the most effective diet plan is the one you can stick to.


  • Spice it up! A study from Wyoming Uni showed Capsaicin may stimulate energy burning in fat cells, and help prevent weight gain.
  • Your run raises calorie burning even after you stop! High intensity intervals are the best way to boost this after-burn effect.
  • Eating breakfast before 11:00 stabilises blood glucose levels, setting you up to burn an extra 442 calories a day compared with non-breakfasters, according to Bath Uni researchers.
  • A recent study reported that participants following a vegan diet lost roughly twice as much weight as those on vegetarian, pesco-vegetarian or omnivorous diets.
  • Endurance training increases your body’s ability to burn fat for fuel, according to research in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sport.
  • A study in the Journal of American College of Nutrition found support from a weight-loss “mentor” was the most effective factor in sticking to a weight-loss plan and overall weight loss.
  • Research shows breaking inactive periods with frequent short bouts of exercise means a smaller waist size!
  • Exercise reduces cravings for sweet food, with even a brisk 15- minute walk having the desired effect, according to a study at Louisiana State Uni.
  • Shedding weight quickly doesn’t mean you’re more likely to pile it back on, says an Australian study in the Lancet which followed participants for 144 weeks after they’d slimmed down at speed.
  • Raspberries and strawberries contain Ellagic Acid, which may slow down growth of fat cells and the formation of new ones, together with boosting metabolism of fatty acids, a study in the Journal of Nutrional Biochemistry reported.
  • It’s thought that eating in subdued lighting whilst listening to mellow music can cut your consumption by 18% and leave you feeling more satisfied, found a study at Cornell Uni.

RW article on weight loss (July 2015)


BHR Do Track & Field * by John Palmer

*Except the field bit, let’s not get carried away!

Blackcap has been run, I’m in the pub discussing with Stuart Condie how he beat me and what startling revelation does he make? – That there are track events you can turn up to and have a go! You can imagine the excitement this caused amongst me and, well probably no-one. And there’s the most important lesson to be learned from this report: It is vitally important we all go to the pub as often as possible!

A bit of Googling and Crawley AC’s Tom Lintern Open Medal Meeting is discovered, offering a range of track events from 100m to 3000m plus lots of jumping & throwing of things. There are additional options for U11 upwards.

August Bank Holiday Monday arrives and two BHR shirts in the shape of me & James Sorbie turn up at K2, much to the surprise and genuine delight of Hayward Heath Harriers’ Deputy Chairman Paul Cousins! I should say it would have been four of us, but two were a bit worn out after running round bits of Dorset & The South Downs over the weekend!

Now what you’re probably wondering is: a. did we enjoy it; b. did we embarrass ourselves. And the answers are yes, it was a brilliant day & no, not at all (at this point I will admit to personally having a high embarrassment threshold when it comes to running!).

And now you’re probably wondering what you can expect when you join me & James next time! So here goes…

The first thing to note is that this is not the sort of thing we normally do, so we did a bit of research on the finer points such as how soon after the start of a 1500m does James move to the inside lane and what am I supposed to do with a set of blocks at the start of the 100m & 400m! The big issue was shoes. You can get away with your usual road shoes but your best bet is to buy a set of 5mm spikes for your XC Spikes. You could of course treat yourself to a selection of the Track & Field Spikes, available with variations for each event!

Advance sign-up wasn’t required for our intended events so we decided to leave it to the day and turn up nice & early as the one thing our research failed to uncover is what actually goes on at a Track & Field Open event.

After a slight delay due to me missing the Crawley exit on the A23 (no, I’m not making this up), we wander into the stadium, comment on the lack of sign-posts but guess from the activity that registration is up the stairs opposite the finish line. As we haven’t come here to do hills we ask someone official looking for confirmation before tackling the ascent. A quick look at the timetable in the window reveals no major changes so we sign up for our chosen events, £6 each or 3 for £15 if you’re tough enough. And then it’s off to the grandstand to watch the obstacle races (or 400m Hurdles as they prefer to call them) and mentally prepare for the tasks ahead (or have a bit of a laugh as we prefer to call it). I make the observation that the track looks longer than Lewes. I put this down to phychological issues but later that night it occurs to me that Lewes doesn’t have 8 lanes all the way round so it is shorter with only the inside lane being 400m!

And so the time approaches for James’ 1500m and the fulfilment of a childhood dream. A quick 1500/400 calculation tells us that the race must start just over there somewhere so off he heads for a warm up. I’ll leave the procedures for my events but a while later and he’s off. And having researched the tactics he’s off quickly, keeping pace with the more experienced front runners. Unfortunately they’ve researched different tactics and unexpectedly speed up, but James gives it his all and 4 minutes, 56.07 seconds later he crosses the finish line, well ahead of a few others, with a superb debut performance conformably beating his own prediction and the tougher target set for him at club, despite a XC Spike malfunction meaning he had to run in his road shoes.


James Sorbie crosses the finishing line just behind the Women gold medal winner

Next up is my 100m. You know how Ian Jones goes on about the importance of warming up? Well, I thought this was a good time to start taking him seriously! So I head down to the track, admittedly a bit late as I hadn’t noticed my watch had gone a bit haywire! The good thing is you can get on bits of the track to warm up while other things are going on. If you can find the blocks you can grab a set to practice with. After a while the call goes out for the Senior men to gather round and that includes me, they don’t care about my advancing years! This is a departure from the U20/Senior Men & Women in the provisional timetable, reflecting the range of people signing up as it’s an open event. So we gather round and the official says it looks like we have just 6 runners. I let everyone know that’s fine by me as I was planning on coming 8th! I’m told that it’s an ungraded race so not to worry if I come last! Sometimes I feel my sense of humour is wasted on people. It turns out everyone’s a bit slow gathering and they finally pick race numbers at random to decide who’s in each of two senior men races. Lanes are drawn by each runner picking from a pack of number cards. I’m pleased not to be the one who forgot to hand theirs back. I’m in lane 4. We’re lined up behind our blocks. On You’re Marks. We move forward and ease into our blocks. Get Set. We rise into the starting position. Bang. The bloke in lane 3 falls flat on his face. Bang. False start, apparently his blocks slipped so we go again. And finally we’re off and not long after we’re finished. So how did I get on? Unfortunately I didn’t hear my race results announced so I’ll have to wait and see. I was well last though!


One of my opponents in the 100m. Maybe I should choose a Graded meeting next time!

An hour-and three-quarters recovery time and I’m in the 400m. It’s the same procedure but this time there was almost the option for the vets to run with the U20s. But the U20s didn’t want us so we watched the two of them race each other. So I’m in with the Seniors, more random number calling and lane drawing and I’m in a 6 man race in lane 4 again and I’ve avoided the 65 year-old. It’s a clean start and after a bit longer than last time we’re finished. How did I get on? Good question, here’s some advice! 400m was to be my main event, but it was my first track meeting so I decided to ignore the advice of sticking to one race and go for the extra experience in the earlier 100m. My struggles from 200m proved the worth of the advice. You’re welcome! I’m pleased to say the grandstand crowd were very sympathetic, I could hear the applause as I battled with myself down the home straight! Having said that, I’m happy with my decision. I’ve got the 100m out of the system and now I’ve experienced the day I’ll be going all out for 400m & 200m spread over the next couple of events. Would I have beaten the 65 year-old? He was also well last in his heat but I think not, maybe if I hadn’t run the 100m. I will check the times when they’re published though!

So the big question – would I recommend this & similar events? Yes. Sprinting may not be for everyone, but out there somewhere is a meeting with a 5K track event which some may consider more sensible. Those who see my Facebook timeline may have spotted comments such as bold, brave and scary when in fact running 50 miles is scary and I refuse to do anything brave or bold so it’s more likely to be stupid which is more fun. As mentioned above James and I will be going back.

So the very big question – what’s the bling like? No idea, I came last not in the top three! Sorry I didn’t mention this at the start to save you wasting time reading to the end but I didn’t want to give away the results! You could however get lucky, there was only one woman in the 1500m (and I don’t mean James)!

So to answer the one remaining question – you may have noticed a lack of photos of me running. I can advise that 400m and below is not a suitable race for taking selfies

Further resources:

See you all at track on the first Wednesday of September! (or maybe October, I don’t know when this is published)


Deep River Rock Belfast City Half Marathon – 18th Sep 2016

(By Keith Brown)

I headed to Belfast to combine my love of travelling and discovering new places and to run a half marathon that is only in the 4th year and has a growing reputation.

Having arrived in Belfast much earlier on Saturday morning than planned, following disrupted travel plans in Glasgow the day before, I took the airport express bus straight to city centre and walked to the hotel which was very well located to the east of the city on the banks of the river Lagan. As there were no rooms ready when I arrived I decided to take a walk to get my bearings and find out the starting location for the race. This was about fifteen minutes away from the hotel in Ormeau Park. Ormeau Park is very large, municipal Public Park to the south of Belfast City and as I arrived there for a look around a Parkrun was just finishing. The Park is beautiful with open green playing fields, a large indoor tennis centre and numerous other sporting facilities.

On to race day, and I arrived back at the park at about 8.15am and dropped my bag off and prepared for the race. The really great thing in Northern Ireland is the friendliness of the locals and this was evident from the first discussions with marshals and locals waiting at the start.

Many running clubs were featured from around the Belfast area but I was the only runner with a BHR top on! In fact, I got asked twice “where is Burgess Hill mate?” The race itself was a very flat course with only 64m elevation gain for the whole route. The first 3 miles utilised the park and surrounding roads before heading east out towards George Best Belfast City Airport where it felt we almost ran alongside the runway! Then we turned around and headed west back toward the city centre and after passing through many pedestrianised and shopping streets emerged out in to the main road by City Hall and on towards the finish.

The final mile was back on the road around the park before a sharp right turn and a 200m sprint along a finishing straight lined 10 deep with spectators and through the finish line under a big gantry containing the clock and sponsors details. The race bag was great and contained a nice medal, finishers T-shirt, water and many other goodies including snacks and recovery shakes.

The link to the race on my Garmin account is here:

Then it was back to the hotel to recover, shower and then venture out to nice local restaurant, Grannie Annie’s, for a big burger lunch and a few Irish pints.

This was a great weekend in a very friendly and historic city. Easy to get to and the race was very well organised, cheap to enter and very flat. I would recommend it to anyone next year looking to combine a bit of travelling with a running event. If you would like any more information then please let me know as I will definitely sign up for next year. The locals are very friendly, the food and drink great, and I really enjoyed getting my half marathon PB of 01:55:58 which felt so satisfying. Thanks for reading.


Disneyland Paris Inaugural 5k & Half Marathon- 24th / 25th Sep 2016

(By Helen Pratt)

The Inaugural Disneyland Paris half marathon and 5k took place on the last weekend in September. An event which could not be missed. A princess castle, Disney characters, fancy dress and bling… oh the bling!

Entry…This was done in 2 ways. In October there was the release of the ‘package’ entries. This was through Disney itself or one of their selected tour operators. Approx. 8,000 entries were available.

The ‘entry only’ about 4,000 bibs opened and closed in one day in January/February. It was easy to do but you had to be quick. One thing to remember, to run an event in France you have to get your GP to sign a medical certificate.

The weekend arrived, so exciting. Having checked into one of the Disney hotels it was time to get to the expo to pick up the ‘bibs’ (numbers).

Security was high. To get into the village and parks there was airport type scanning.

‘Bibs’, bag and t shirt picked up it was time to have a quick look around the expo. Apparently it was nothing like the usual American Disney scale. The ‘pins’ and replica medals had all gone. The expo had been open for nearly 2 days. There was also an opportunity to buy a photo pass to get race photos. I’m still waiting to see if that was worth it. No photos yet.

Races…The races started bright and early at 7am on both days. Saturday the 5k, followed by kids/family races and Sunday half marathon.


People started arriving before 6am. Before going into the corrals there was a photo, with either, for the 5k a Ratatouille themed scene or for the half the princess castle. The corrals were clearly marked.

At the start line there was a party atmosphere. Compares, music, interviews with Paula Radcliffe and fireworks. It was a very colourful line up. Many runners had some form of fancy dress. From the full Disney costume to the sparkly Mickey and Minnie ears.

7am arrived, time to go.

Saturday – 5k

Once through the start the 5k route ran straight down to the Magic Kingdom. Under the pink Disney hotel and straight onto Main Street. WOW!… there in front was Sleeping Beauty’s castle all lit up in pink and purple.

The 1st Photo stop. Queue number 1. 5mins or so off again. Around the corner Rabbit and Eeyore, another photo must. Oh well it isn’t a timed run!

Chewbacca, Mary Poppins with Bert and the penguins (guess where I met Neil Griggs), Woody and Jessie.



Then into the Disney studios where there were more characters. Roger Rabbit, Ratatouille, Rex from Toy story. Eventually the parks were done and around the corner was the finish.

The bling it was a Ratatouille theme this year. Mickey and Goofy were at the finish line. An amazing run …shhh don’t tell anyone it took over an hour to run 5k!

Sunday – half marathon

The half marathon started in the same place as the 5k. The start gantry had changed from Ratatouille to Mickey.

It started in the same way, with all the hype, the fireworks and music. Even more people dressed as their favourite Disney character.


A slight security delay and then the first corral went off in its sections. Each time a count down with Sleeping beauty’s fairies, Mickey and fireworks.

Disney studios first his time. Before long we were running on the set of the stunt show.

Then out onto the streets of Hollywood.


Loads of photo opportunities again. Chip n Dale, The Aristocats, Spiderman, Captain America…oh do I want a good finish time or a photo?

Next into the Magic Kingdom. Here there was Darth Vader and the Storm Troopers, Aladdin and Genie, Baloo and King Louis and more.

After 5k… a slow 5k, the course left the Disney parks and ran along the French country side. It was now time to settle down to a good pace and try and claw back some of the time lost in the parks getting a good picture. It was a lovely route. At 7k we ran around a running track. It was pretty much a flat road course although there were a few sneaky long, steady inclines thrown in. 13k found a great bit of off road as we came to a lake and amazing cheer leaders giving that much needed boost.


16k saw the route head back to Disney. This time weaving around the hotels. The Santa Fe, The Cheyene and around the lake in front of the Newport bay before heading into the Disney village and finally to the finish.

The support around the course for both days was good, especially in the parks. All the cast members were out, many with their Mickey hands, giving high 5’s and shouting ‘ALLEZ’ ‘ALLEZ’. This was shouted throughout the course with great enthusiasm.

Refreshments along the route were good. Water and Powerade along with Special K bars and bags of cut up apple.

The weekend was fantastic and well organised. The races were great and the bling totally amazing. The event was for everyone. The serious runner wanting a good time, the not so serious runner wanting a good time and great photos and the walker, there were loads of walkers. All you had to do was not to let the balloon ladies get in front of you who were doing a 16 minute mile.

The bling is amazing big and heavy.

And for those who had completed a Disney half marathon in the States this year they got the lovely Castle to Chateau medal as well.


Barns Green Half Marathon- 25th Sep 2016

(By Steve Roberts)

I entered Barns Green Half again this year – it’s the 4th time I’ve done it & I have enjoyed it more each year I think. This year was the 34th running of the race and to say it’s a ‘well-oiled machine’ would be very accurate. With over 1,300 runners (including those running the first time ever 10k) in a small village there is plenty that could go wrong but the organisers have everything from parking to registration/bag drop very well covered. These days there’s a virtual village fair feel to the event!

Anyway, onto the all important running bit! The course is made up of 2 loops meaning that you come back through the start finish just before the 6 mile mark. Most of the route is on country lanes around Barns Green with a small amount of off-road trail which is great underfoot. It’s fair to say there are a few ‘undulations’ along the way but nothing too major. There are a few ‘grinds’ as we like to call them but all very runnable. The weather always seems to be great at Barns Green in my experience and it’s a very picturesque route – part of it goes through Christ’s Hospital School grounds, which is pretty impressive.

The course is really well marshalled & there are plenty of drink stations en route. A particular theme of Barns Green is musical entertainment around the course – this year there were guitar bands, a jazz outfit and best of all a steel drum band, who were playing their version of Europe’s “The Final Countdown” as I came into the last mile or so.

I was really chuffed with my run – I wanted to make a steady well-paced effort and come in under 2 hours & I got 1:53 so was well pleased with that. We didn’t have as many runners out this year, not sure why. I know a couple of people were nursing injuries which slowed them down but I think mostly people had a good race. Steve Gray reported very favourably on the 10k course. We also had an official pacer on the course – James Sorbie led the 1:50 runners’ home (I couldn’t quite catch them).

I look forward to doing it all again next year – in addition to the above positives all the profits from the day go to local charities, which is brilliant!


Social News from Karen Harvey

Everyone who came to the Bedlam Brewery tour had a great time (and some great beer to drink!) It was a beautiful setting, a lovely evening. We will be going back.

The group that went to the greyhound races came back almost quits having had a good night out. (But remember kids, gambling doesn’t pay)

Upcoming events:

BHR Birthday Quiz

This coming up on Thursday November 10th at the Hassocks Hotel, Quizzy McQuizface is leading the quiz which kicks off at 7:30

Teams will be chosen so don’t worry if you come alone, you’ll soon make friends.

£8 covers the quiz, a fish and chip ( or veggi alternative) supper and a fabulous time!

Prizes to be won.

Details on how to pay to follow shortly.

We are asking for cake donations please let Karen know if you can donate/bake something for us!

Xmas Party is on Saturday December 10th at Hassock Golf Club more details to follow soon!


Cross Country Corner with John Palmer

Welcome to the first (or only, I may not have mentioned I want a series) Cross Country Corner, opening with a view from the rear end of the Sussex Cross Country League field to highlight what most of the club are missing out on for four Saturdays spread over October to February.

Hopefully I can convince a few of you of the benefits of joining us for at least some of the forthcoming season, your club needs you as we’d like to attain the dizzy heights of sending out at least 8 men & 3 women throughout the season, something we should be more than capable of but haven’t managed in my time.


I’ll start by dispelling a few myths. I like to compare SCCL to the WSFRL which we all enjoy, with the admission that it is slightly more serious with a higher overall standard of runner which will make it unsuitable for some. But if you are (or should be) a Development Group runner you definitely should be considering this. If you’re a Performance Group runner you should just be giving your name to Stuart Condie but feel free to have a read anyway, it’s quite a good article! So to myth-busting:

  • You do not have to be asked or ‘picked’ to compete nor do you have to commit to all races. There is no advance entry, each race is open to all on the day at a very reasonable £4-5 and we can have as many runners / teams as we like each time
  • XC Spike shoes are not essential, trail shoes will generally be fine. However it is unlikely that road shoes will be suitable as it is off-road winter running. If you do want to treat yourself in case of a mud-bath then XC spikes are some of the more reasonably priced shoes as there’s not much to them. If you only have road shoes and only want to buy one new pair then buy trail not spikes
  • The courses are not too tough. They are 5 miles for men and 3 miles for women (sorry, don’t shoot the messenger), shorter than some of the WSFRL cross-country races and not as hilly as some. As it’s winter they can be boggier or muddier though!
  • You do not have to be one of our elite runners (I’ve proved that!). They will be there but I’ve discovered they’re quite happy to stand around and chat at the end while waiting for me to finish. As a guide, at last year’s Goodwood event the last place woman took 40 minutes for 3 miles but was a bit off the pace from everyone else so 30-35 is a good benchmark. If you can do 17:09 you would have won. For the men’s 5 miles, 46:33 was a couple of minutes off the back with 38-40 being the main rear grouping including me. 23:09 and you’re a winner

How it works:

  • Men & women run separate races of 5 and 3 miles respectively. Our ‘A’ teams are currently in Division 2 of their respective leagues
  • Teams comprise 4 Men or 3 Women and rather than being nominated names it is a case of the first finishers making up Team A, the following finishers Team B. On a good day there will be enough of us for me to be Team C, otherwise I’m pleased to contribute to B
  • The scoring system makes everyone count even more so than WSFRL. Everyone scores points equal to their finishing position and the team with the lowest points total over the season wins
  • Teams don’t have to be complete so multiples of 4/3 aren’t essential. But missing runners incur penalty points above last place so just turning up and making it round can make the difference

The Dates:

  • I know for many this can be a snagging point – each race is in the middle of the day on a Saturday. But don’t forget, you’re welcome to take each race as it comes
  • This season’s races are: 15-Oct (Goodwood), 12-Nov (Lancing), 03-Dec (Stanmer Park), 11-Feb (Hickstead)

What you’ll get out of it:

  • My personal experience is that these are the most motivating races I’ve ever entered. The competition’s tough and a step up in level for me. As a mid-table WSFRL runner I’m battling at the back of SCCL. And that’s what motivates me, someone has to be last but I’d rather it wasn’t me
  • A medal. If you’re lucky! If at the end of the season we have a team in the top three and you contributed points to it then you’re in. James Sorbie’s medal for the one time he finished in our top 4 is, I believe, one of his proudest
  • A great sense of contribution to the club’s scoreboard – every position counts. With a bigger pool of our top runners would we’d have more chance of fielding a top quality Men’s Team A at each race for that top-three finish or maybe even a top two finish and promotion to Division 1 with its 6 man teams. And what can the Men’s Team B and Women’s Team A do with a full complement at every race?
  • It may be a step up but we don’t take ourselves too seriously. My performance levels will ensure that remains the case

What now:

  • Interested but have questions or unsure if it’s right for you? Stuart Condie’s the main man for XC and he or James Sorbie are probably the best people to advise you. Or ask me, I’m John Palmer if no-one added it to the top. Past results are available online so you can work out where you’ll stand if it helps
  • Talk to any of the XC regulars when we’re out and about. If you’re running near me or ahead of me and I catch up for a moment then there’s a good chance I’ll be talking to you!
  • Look out for the Facebook event to sign-up or express some interest, even for future races if you can’t make the next. Or just let Stuart know. You’re not committing to anything and could just surprise us on the day but it helps to know who’s coming each time so we know if we’re looking short and need to ‘persuade’ people. We won’t be ‘inviting’ people to the event but may tag a few names that we know are interested
  • Turn up with £5 (it may be less) and your club shirt (club colours are compulsory), we can discuss transport. Make sure you know your name & how old you are for registration and that they log you as BHR (if they write BH you’ll end up running for Brighton & Hove!)

Next Month’s Exciting Instalment:

  • Goodwood Results (come on, be part of them!)
  • More events
  • Less words
  • Probably someone else writing them

Further Resources:


parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk

Reflecting on my first parkrun, which was at Clair Park in Haywards Heath, I remembered how nervous I was feeling the week before.  I had so many concerns that left my stomach churning. What time should I leave home? Where would I park? How many spaces were in the car park? Would I get one of them?  If I didn’t, where else would I park? What time should I arrive? Would I be last?  Will everyone else be so fast I would look a numpty trudging round on my own and maybe I would be so slow that everyone would have packed up and gone home.

All this caused so much doubt I was having more doubts about turning up. But I did and recall getting there at 8.30am and then really feeling a numpty as there appeared to be no other runners in sight.

I guess so many of us have these feelings, not just for parkrun but for any events we do. If this is how you have been feeling, don’t let it put you off.

Ask others about them and try and take a buddy. Once you have been once it gets easier. All parkruns have a new runners’ brief, usually around 8.45/8.50, which will explain the course route etc.

Volunteers will be wearing hi viz , so feel free to approach these people with any queries or just to
introduce yourself. You’ll never be last. parkrun will also have a tail runner. This is someone who stays at the back to ensure no one is left behind and everyone finishes safely. If you want to they will chat and encourage you.

Sometimes doing your first one can feel overwhelming so it’s great to have someone to chat too and helps place your mind in a positive place.

When you cross the finish line with everyone clapping you and feel that sense of achievement you’ll forget all the worries you had leading up to it.

Local to Clair Park we also have Tilgate, Hove park, Hove prom and Preston Park if you want something of a flatter 5K. Claire Giles has done a lovely little write up for us about Hove Prom Park run.

‘parkrun on the prom

So if you feel that Clair park parkrun maybe a tough route & you fancy a flat one, then why not try Hove Prom?  It starts just off the lawns cafe along the prom. The course is a flat, fast run, entirely on the tarmac. It is two laps of the prom which is parallel to the shingle beach and Hove lawns. The start and finish is near the Hove Lawns cafe. You can grab a post run coffee and cake after at the cafe and stay and chat to friends. I have run this one three times. I enjoy it, it is fast and flat and you can generally get a PB here!  I did get my PB here but now I have beaten it!  The team are friendly and welcoming as like all parkruns.. Run, walk, jog, bring a dog, buggy, just come down and enjoy.It is so lovely to be by the sea.  See the waves, smell the sea air and see across to Brighton, Worthing and Shoreham.’

Lastly congratulations to Ann Savidge who has become one of the Clair parkrun core team. We are sure she will be a great asset to an already amazing bunch of people. Here we have a pic of Ann who is showing Caz a weekly stretch routine. Her talents are endless.

Have a great October – T

So that’s it for the October newsletter.  A huge thank you to the contributors and co-ordinators for helping to put it together.

As always, please don’t by shy in coming forward with your stories, thoughts or reports.

This is your newsletter and the content is driven by you.

Take care, Neil and the team.

September 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the September Newsletter.

First of all a few words about Track Nights from Head Coach Liz, then some lovely race reports and then parkrun corner with Theresa.

Hope you enjoy the read.  Please don’t be shy in coming forward to contribute to future editions.


Winter Track dates

To make it easier to remember, all the track dates take place on the first Wednesday of the month at Lewes Leisure Centre! Get there at 7.45pm for 8pm start. You will probably do a few drills as part of your warm up and then there will be a choice of a speed or endurance session.

5th October
2nd November
7th December
4th January
1st February
1st March
5th April

Whether you love running in circles or hate the thought of it, the truth is that track sessions will make you a better, faster runner. But how should you use your time to best effect? There are many benefits to track sessions regardless of your speed.

A track session is an excellent environment for a high intensity interval workout and will give you a very focused training session. It will benefit training for all levels of race distances: 5K, 10K, half marathon and marathon. Track sessions also help you to practice consistent running and race pace.

There are variations of sessions which can incorporate short intervals, 100 to 400 metres, at a faster pace which help to increase raw speed, stride power and running economy.

Middle distance intervals, 600 to 1200 metres, would generally be run at your 3-5k race pace and help your body to learn to consume oxygen, recycle lactate and resist the major physiological causes of muscle fatigue at high running speeds resulting in increased aerobic fitness.

Long intervals, typically 1600 to 3000 metres, are run at a slower pace which would be closer to your 10k pace and will be close to your lactate threshold pace for many. Longer intervals increase the body’s intensity to recycle lactate for muscle fuel.

You can also incorporate a mixed interval session.

So whilst you may not be Mo Farah or Usain Bolt, why not give track a go. . Track is fun and if you’re not sure where to go or don’t want to arrive on your own, there will be plenty of people who will happily give you a lift. Remember, if you aren’t going to track, there are no 7.30pm sessions from the school.

Race Reports

13 The Hard way – 27th Aug 2016

(By Keith Brown)

To be honest I had no idea what to expect from this race that was my first trail half marathon and only my third event at this particular distance. I was persuaded to sign up by a fellow club member who I have been running with for most of the time since I have been a member of the club.


Having arrived and registered in a field at the foot of the South Downs I soon realised that there were a large number of fellow club runners participating so it felt more like a club training session.


The route started with a fierce climb up to the South Downs way following the tank tracks. The elevation gain of 139m for the first mile told its own story as did the 15 min time to complete. Once up on the South Downs Way heading east towards Housdean the route followed both loose gravel and grass paths whilst undulating, with spectacular views of the Sussex countryside, and a good downhill sprint to the half way point.

The way back was just as tough in reverse with miles 6 1/2– 8 1/2 almost entirely uphill. The breeze strengthened and legs began to tire but the downhill to the finish was a welcome sight at the end.

My time of 2:40:38 was one I was very pleased with considering I had nothing to measure it against. Felt like I could have gone a bit quicker but on this occasion just happy to finish the course.

My memories and thoughts from this day was the non-stop encouragement from runners, some I knew, some I didn’t, the warm welcome from all of the volunteers and of course my own personal achievement and more bling!

Running is a great sport and one I am beginning to love more each day.  If you haven’t given anything like this a go then my advice – Do it!


Dublin Rock n roll Half Marathon- 7th Aug 2016

(By Helen Pratt)

Five Burgess Hill Runners, Linda R, Steve G, Marie C, Lee C and myself flew to Dublin to run the Rock n roll half Marathon.


There are many events in the rock n roll series. Most in America but there are a few within a short flight/drive for us – Liverpool, Lisbon, Madrid and Dublin. They all have a range of distances to run and they all have amazing bling.


Dublin has a half marathon, 10k and family 3k run on the Sunday and 5k on the Saturday.

Saturday afternoon saw a visit to the expo to pick up numbers, t shirts and enter the 5k family run. This year it was held at Trinity college which was central Dublin. The expo isn’t much to get excited about, apparently the American ones are amazing but this allowed us time to explore Dublin, well the Guinness factory actually.

Race day arrived, fuelled with the Guinness we prepared ourselves to run 13.1 miles. Steve put on his green tutu, a birthday challenge, which he took to very well.

The half marathon and 10k started together at 8.30 in waves. Eventually we got started. A lovely flat course running along the River Liffy. Flat? Mmm, that’s what we though. To begin with yes. The course runs past the Ha’penny bridge, the gates of the Guinness storehouse, through the Kilmainham hospital, the Gaol and the Irish museum of modern art grounds.

At mile 6 the road splits and the 10k runners peel off to enter Phoenix Park leaving us half marathoners to carry on to enter the park further up the road. Here we meet the hills at 8 miles. The remaining 5 miles were a tough up and down around Phoenix park.

Throughout the run there were bands lining the route which gave a great boost.

Finally the finish line and the bling.


Not satisfied with running 13.1 miles we then had another 3k to run as we had signed up for the family run. Well more bling of course!!

At the finish there is more music and a concert laid on for anyone who wishes to stay and listen

Bad Cow Double Marathon Weekend (plus a 10k and half marathon option) – August 2016

(By Neil Dawson)

So, the Bad Cow weekend arrived and we headed back to Holton Lee in Dorset, where we had run the Bad Cow Saturday marathon last year. We love Dorset, but we had agreed not to do the same event 2 years running.

We broke this promise for 2 reasons.  Firstly, it’s White Star.  We love White Star.  They’re cool, as are their races.  Secondly, with the Chiltern Wonderland 50 fast approaching, this seemed like a good last big training weekend with a marathon on Saturday and Sunday.

It’s 100 mile drive from Sussex, which took me 4 hours.  Lovely Friday rush hour.  When I got there, Nick and the rest of the Burgess Hill Runners campers were there along with Nick’s Dad and his wife.

My tent was already erect and all I had to do was to open a beer and get my vegan pizza from the on-site caterers (MYO – very good you know).

It was pretty cold on Friday night and we soon headed off to bed pretty early ready for an early start on Saturday.  I didn’t sleep well (surprise surprise).  6 foot 2” light sleeper inside pop up tent while the wind is blowing a gale and it’s chucking it down outside.  Recipe for 3 hours kip.

So, I got up.  The first person on the camp site to emerge from their shelter.  If only there were a prize for this.  I’d win at every race where we camp.  Breakfast was good.  The stomach wasn’t playing up (yet) and slowly but surely the camp site came to life (assisted by Andy, the race director driving round the field with music on full blast).

9am and it’s time to go.  The 2 marathons are on the same course, but are run in different directions on each day.   There is also a 10k race at 6pm on Saturday and a half marathon on Sunday morning for those who don’t fancy taking on 26-ish miles.

The race is 8 laps of varied terrain and flora/trees and so on.  This is the flattest of the White Star events with only 2 sections that I would call hills.

There is always a sense of fun at WSR races, but I think that they outdid themselves this time.  There’s always fancy dress and there’s always an incredibly relaxed and jovial atmosphere.  The runners are always very friendly.  There is always a ‘Love Station’ as well, which is the feature aid station on WSR events.  For the Bad Cow Marathons you pass it 8 times and it was a joy.  It was ABBA themed.  Music playing all day.  There was singing, dancing and booze.  It really was quite amazing.  I don’t know how they kept it up all day.  They did also have a lovely selection of the usual aid station food and drink.

So, for my races.  I knew that I should have taken day 1 easy, but that would be too easy.  Something inside me was saying to go for a time.  So I did.  Well, a time for me, but it’s all relative.  These races are chip times, so you have accurate lap split times.  One day I decided to set off around 6 minute km pace.  This would give me my second quickest marathon ever and would batter my trail marathon record.  The splits are below (each lap is 5.3km).

Lap 1 – 31.17
Lap 2 – 30.55
Lap 3 – 30.56
Lap 4 – 30.22
Lap 5 – 31.07
Lap 6 – 33.10
Lap 7 – 38.33
Lap 8 – 38.57

I’m getting pretty good at running even splits, although I ran out of gas on the last 2 laps.  There was a lot more run/walking involved, but a finishing time of 4 hours 25 minutes and 7 seconds.  That’s my third quickest marathon ever and quickest trail marathon by a distance.

At the end of day 1, I must admit that I was pretty reticent about doing the same thing the next day (but in the opposite direction).  It turns out that there was nothing to fear.  In fact, day 2 was much more fun.  I ran with Nick and Philippe for the first 3 laps.  We took lots of photos and had a real laugh.


I set out at 5 hour 25 minute pace (an hour slower than the previous day seemed like a good arbitrary target).  My pacing on day 2 was spot on.

Lap 1 – 39.40
Lap 2 – 39.02
Lap 3 – 38.38
Lap 4 – 39.41
Lap 5 – 38.11
Lap 6 – 38.15
Lap 7 – 37.12
Lap 8 – 36.12

That’s 5 hours 6 minutes and 51 seconds.

Almost constant until the last 2 laps when I speeded up.  I felt strong and really loved day 2.  Very unexpected.

I fuelled on baby food, tomatoes, crisps and fruit.  I took a salt tablet every hour and used Zero electrolyte tablets in my drinks.

As far as confidence boosts for my second 50 miler go, this could not have been better.

So, what did I learn from this weekend:

  1. Pacing is king. Choose a pace that you feel you’re going to be comfortable at and keep to it.  Even if you’re feeling good at 10k, 15k or 20k, don’t speed up.  It’s a marathon, not a sprint.  Literally.
  2. If you wear a head torch in bed and there is a moth in your tent, it will constantly fly into your head until you turn the torch off.
  3. Learn from the professionals. Having read about the meticulous preparation of the Team GB cycling squad and how they take their own pillows with them everywhere they go, to aid with better sleep, I decided to take my own pillows with me.  This was clearly a step up from rolling up my bulky clothing to fashion a pillow, which is what I did at Giant’s Head.
  4. Philippe is forgetting how to speak French.
  5. Get smaller bags to pack different types of things in, rather than putting everything in one big bag. This will make it easier to find things.  In conjunction with this, get everything ready the night before the race rather than rolling up, cracking open a beer and saying ‘I’ll do it in the morning’.
  6. The weather always sounds worse inside a tent than it actually is outside.
  7. Runners are brilliant. Volunteers, photographers, fellow runners.    Just amazing.  This community is the business.  It doesn’t matter how quick or slow you are.  Everyone cheers.  Everyone encourages you along.  Big hugs to you all.
  8. ABBA can make you happy. I know that the circumstances were slightly strange, but ABBA actually made me happy.  My only regret is that I didn’t get the chance to sing ‘Knowing Me Knowing You, Aha’ in an Alan Partridge style at the aid station.
  9. Hokas are sooooooooooooooooooo comfortable. I ran the first half of day 2 in my normal Adidas road shoe, but changed back to my Hokas for the last 3 laps.  My first ever pair and I love them.

So, that’s the Bad Cow by White Star running.  In a nut shell, great race, lovely place, wonderful people, amazing medals, free photos (yes free photos – free – yes free, and they’re really good.  A huge thank you to Rob Hannam for these) and the best aid station on the planet.  There is only one thing I’d suggest as an improvement for this event and that is the flavour of the crisps in the goods bag.  Would have loved veggie friendly crisps. You can tell that your £30-ish has been well spent when that’s how deep you have to scrape the barrel for something you’d like to change.

Thank you Andy, the Race Director.  Just amazing.  You set the standard.


The East Farm Frolic by Jay Wadey

The East Farm Frolic is not just another race, no sir!

It is an experience. An experience that everyone reading this would be able to participate in, and from the Burgess Hill Runners first time taking part in this event, I can honestly say that I can see an even bigger squad heading off to Dorset for next years race.

Although the actual race is on a Sunday, to really get in the mood, I would advise arriving on the Saturday with your camping equipment and staying through to Monday. That way you can really soak up the atmosphere and you feel the excitement growing! The main pack of the blue army managed to all camp in the same spot and it really made for a great base for the weekend. Most of the first afternoon was spent erecting tents and getting ourselves comfortable, but by tea time, most of us headed to the start area, where there was a huge tent where you could get a meal and if you fancied, a rather nice ale or two (or three)! It was lovely to meet other runners and chat. The evening was warm and pleasant, and it was great to chill out before the next days main event.

After a good nights sleep well as good as you can get from sleeping in a tent! BHR’s finest stepped out to compete in The East Farm Frolic.

Now the actual race takes place over a 6(ish) kilometre lap and the aim is to complete as many laps as you can over a 12 hour period. You can choose to run as a team of 4, or 3, or 2, or if you are super fit or completely mad you can do it solo! You can take it as seriously or as fun as you like, it’s up to you. The rule one is that over the 12 hours each one of your team must run at least one lap. Lots of runners dress up in fancy dress, mainly as farmyard animals to add to the fun. Burgess Hill Runners lined up 5 teams of 4 athletes. As 8:00am approached, we got ready to race.

My team was The Beetroot Bombardiers and we consisted of Neil and Nick Dawson, Malcolm Slater and myself. Neil decided to lead us off by completing 2 laps straight away (we had our tactical team talk the previous evening in the beer tent and this was a sure-fire way for us to win this challenge!). After just over an hour or so, he passed the baton on to Malcolm Slater. Now when I say baton, I actually mean a deep pink rubber squeaky chicken! All teams were issued with one and you had to keep that chicken on the course at all times (that was the second rule). We cheered Malcolm off and I went back to watching the runners completing their laps. I must admit, I totally lost track of the time and was busy chatting away with everyone, when all of a sudden Malcolm appeared in the distance and it was my turn to run.

The morning was rainy, but I frantically tore off my rain coat and stripped down to reveal the mighty blues colours (a bit like Superman does!). Malcolm crossed the line and attached the chip bracelet to my ankle and handed me the chicken. I was off!

As I said, the lap is 6k (just over) and you start by heading over the field you are camping in, through into another field that is flat, but slightly bumpy underfoot and then the fun starts.  You head into a third field that goes up and I mean UP! It is steep to say the least. Even on my first lap I chose to conserve energy and walk for the two or three minutes it takes to get to the top. When you reach the top, there is a sign saying look at the view behind you and you turn around and see the whole camp site below and a steady stream of runners heading up behind you. It is a fantastic view for sure. You carry on and you soon head into the wooded area for around half a kilometre. As you emerge, there is a field that has a slight downward incline. Then we have a jump over a hay bale, turn left and head gently upwards to the halfway point and some farm buildings.

Next there is 1k of trail path on a gentle down gradient. A nice break for the legs. You then turn right and head slightly up for 400 metres to the LOVE STATION. This is the point where you can replenish all your lost energy with water, biscuits and jelly babies or if you prefer, you can move to the next table and have some cola, cake and pretzels or you can move to the third table and have beer, cider or shots of melon vodka! You may find this hard to believe, but on my first lap, I bypassed all this and abstained and headed down through two more fields until I could see the finish line. I crossed over the finish in around 34 minutes and found Nick waiting to take on the next lap. I placed the chip bracelet around her ankle, handed her my chicken and away she sped!

I then had around 2 hours before my next lap, so I re-fuelled and prepared. time goes by very fast… it was my lap again. this continued for the next few hours. I decided that I would do a double lap for my 3-4 finale and that pretty much finished my day. By the end of the twelve hours, the Beetroot Bombardiers had managed a marvelous 16 laps which is over 96 kilometres. This somewhat pales a bit when you learn that the top solo runner finished on 18 laps all by himself! Still, we had all had a fantastic day and we partied on into the night.

That is not quite the end of the story.

The next morning we awoke and all signed up to the charity race that was put on at the same area. The Chaos Run. It cost just 6 to enter and the medal was as big as your head!

We paid our money and turned up at the start line. We were told to remove our shoes and place one in each of two bags. These were taken up the field and emptied into two big piles. The race started, and we headed off to find our shoes. Once they had been discovered we could then run a shortened course in reverse (around 5k). There were a couple of obstacles to overcome too and I was made to do 10 sit-ups whilst being squirted by a water gun, but I overcome and finished the course in good spirits.

I am already looking forward to next years event. I hope you will join us!


parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk

Hello to you all.

Do you like Spanish food? I wasn’t sure that I would, but still I went ahead and booked a table for two in a lovely little eatery  in the Lanes. The food was delicious, and we enjoyed a bit of flamenco dancing and singing too.

Now, being someone who loves tucking up in bed with a good book on the go it was quite novel affair for me to be down in Brighton at 11 pm. Way past my bedtime. The streets were filled with gaiety and chatter, colour and energy. It took my mind to thinking ‘normally fast asleep by now’, and while I’m sleeping, all this bustle of entertainment is going on. People enjoying being together; walking arm in arm silently soaking up the atmosphere,  some rather noisy rowdy groups adding to the ambiance, then the  clatter  and clinks of classes and cutlery sounding from open doors and windows, people meeting friends with hugs and smiles.  It did something to my soul and I felt truly part of the picture in front of me.

This really does have a lot to do with parkrun, so hold on in there. It will come quicker than a finish line.

So, a Saturday morning arrives.  I’ve not got any commitments so I could go to Clair Park for a run or any other parkrun for that matter.  However,  my head is still in sleep slumber mode, snuggled into my pillow and oh my duvet is just so snugly. Why on ever would I want to rise and leave the warm cocoon of slumber? Well the answer is, I don’t have to. I can just stay in bed.

The other option is, yes, you’ve guessed it, is to get up and go and join in with some lovely people for a run/jog/walk.  Where you can laugh, hug and cry. You can experience elation, encouragement and friendliness all in one big sugary heap and not pile on the lbs on in the process.

If getting up out of snugly dreamy world is difficult you or there are other reasons a Saturday does not work for you, you can still do Parkrun Freedom. Go along to the Parkrun at a date and time more suitable to you.  Run it, record your time, then go to one of your parkrun emails and click on the link for freedom parkrun and record your time there. Just so easy.

Meanwhile as some of us headed to our local parkruns, Ann Savidge headed to Ipswich to run The Ipswich Parkrun which is held at Chantry Park.  Well, in reality they went for a family wedding.

On the 20th August, my husband Andrew and I were up in Ipswich for a family wedding and I thought I would give the local Parkrun a try. It is held in Chantry Park, which is the largest town park in Ipswich. It extends over 124 acres of parkland and wildlife areas and is situated on the western edge of town.

A short 5 minutes’ walk took us to the Ipswich and East Suffolk Cricket pavilion where the run would be starting from. Over 250 runners took park that morning, so slightly more than I’m used to at Clair Park! The description of a multi terrain course was spot on as we ran on a section of woodland trail paths, gravel pathways, short sections of tarmac and quite a bit of grass. It was a very scenic route which passed the usual children’s play areas and football pitches but also the imposing Chantry Manor with its walled gardens and bowls green where they were setting up for the days play. Not quite a flat course as there was a couple of undulating bits but a lovely Parkrun to visit if you ever get the chance. Highly recommended in my opinion.

One other small sweetener – all the cakes at the end were free, you were only expected to pay for your teas and coffees.

Thank you to everyone who has helped out with parkrun in whatever capacity. Last month we know Jay Wadey won the swim pass but being a member of the leisure centre already he has passed it on. So this month one voucher for a family swim pass goes to Richard Copeland and one to Miranda Skinner.

Have a good September

Theresa C


As always, thank you to the contributors.  This newsletter only exists if you contribute with your race reports or any other article that you would like to write.

Please send any contributions to myself, Steve Bird and Claire Giles.

Thanks and take care, Neil.

August 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the August newsletter.

It’s been a busy month again with lots of great weather and lovely races.

Hope you enjoy the contributions this month.



Coaches Corner by Head Coach Sue Bailie


Generally being physically flexible is good thing, running biomechanics are less strained and injury risk is reduced – However, you can have too much of a good thing!

Excessive flexibility may indicate Hypermobility, or Hypermobility syndrome (a more serious condition managed by a rheumatologist).

Hypermobility is diagnosed by fulfilling certain criteria, doctors and physio’s use the “Beighton scale score, the more serious syndrome uses this and the addition of other pain & disability factors”.

It can affect some or all of your joints. The hypermobile soft tissue collagen has less tensile strength making them too lax allowing too much range of movement putting stress & strain on the joint surfaces and overloading the body’s biomechanics increasing muscle strain, joint instability and injury risk.

It has been noted that hypermobile individuals have reduced levels of proprioception (knowing where your body is in space and adapting to this agilely).

Some Signs to lookout for are:

Elbows bend backwards, thumb touches forearm when bent backwards, knees bend backwards, little finger bends back more than 90*, skin laxity (eg, when lifted away from back of hand).

Feeling muscles are constantly tired & recurring injuries often in more than one area.

If you have most or all of these signs and symptoms consider talking your concerns over with your GP.

The good news is Hypermobility doesn’t need to wreck your running career, you can make positive changes to your training.

So to help yourself you’ll need to work on improving your strength, balance and control.

Exercises should be done moving in a small range of movement so as not to over extend your joints;

Lunges, keep weight on back foot & dip knee to kiss the floor (8 reps each leg)

Single leg squats, don’t let knee drop in or rotate outwards or go past the toes (8 reps each leg)

Single leg calf raise, standing on one leg & lift up onto toes with leg straight (15 reps each leg)

Core strength exercises and wobble board balances.

Stay strong & keep injuries at bay.

See you out there,

Sue X


Bushy Park 5 & 10k – 10th July 2016

(By Oli Jones)

Well I chose Bushy Park as a location because I wanted to do a run in London and it happened to be quite near where a family member lives. It is fairly easy to get to, a train to Clapham Junction and then change and get a south west train to Hampton Court.

It is an easy walk from the station as you go all the way past Hampton Court and follow the road straight and the main Entrance to Bushy Park is on the opposite side of the road. Brought back some fond memories of the GBR as you walk over the bridge and straight past the start line of the first stage.

The Race:

The start / finish line is situated to the North West of the park, not far from the car park and the lake. The race is two laps of a multi terrain course and starts at 10.00 am on the Sunday morning.

Off we go:

I started quite near the front as I thought I would be able to try and beat my PB, also it is a mix field as you can choose to do the one lap (5k) or two laps (10k).

Well the starter sounded and of we went, the first part of the course was over grass as you headed off towards the North West of the park. You join a tarmacked pathway that goes all the way round the outskirts of the park, there are opportunities to overtake on this part. You follow this path round to the main gate then cut upwards to the centre of the park, half way up this you turn left back into the trees and onto grassy paths that are cut through ferns.

The course then follows the grassy paths working their way up towards the start / finish line, as you get towards the line there is a nice section for people to watch and sit down and you also have to be careful of the deer as you go round. The finish line is set up on a nice straight path which is grass and you run quite near the lake. Two laps of this and your race is done, I was a bit disappointed as I missed out on my PB by a couple of seconds but I enjoyed it.


I enjoyed the race as I like doing and exploring different types of races and terrain. It is run by Nice Work, who also do a Richmond parkrun along with this one, every month for about seven months of the year (don’t quote on that). Bushy Park is a lovely park, I have been here a few times now and it is good just for a family day out with a picnic. Bushy Park is the third biggest park in London and also has a large population of deer.


High Weald Challenge 2016 – Andredsweald Circuit 26 Miles – 10th Jul 2016

(By Paula Ridley)


For those of you who don’t know the LDWA is the Long Distance Walking Association. They have a branch in each county and you can become an annual member for a very small charge. They arrange group walks and also challenge events which are generally open to walkers and runners, members and non-members. These are low cost, no frills and wonderfully low key events. I first heard about the LDWA a year or so ago when a few BHR members entered something called the Punchbowl 30. This was to be one of their first ultra distances so I went along as crew.

I love being out and about, I love to walk and my running ability is somewhat lacking so having a go at a long distance event aimed at walkers seemed perfect. When Steve Roberts mentioned the Andredsweald Circuit in Kent I thought it sounded like a great idea, it’s fairly local, the middle of summer (yeah right) and a manageable 26 miles. I knew I wanted to walk this and went out to acquire some Nordic walking poles which I took up on the South Downs for a test run. I love these poles! Karen Harvey had expressed an interest in running this event, Helen Pratt and Steph Harding were also keen, so that was our merry band complete.

The great thing about these events are they are a bit ‘turn up and start when you’re ready’ affairs. So on the day walkers were encouraged to start at 8:30am and runners at 10:00am though it’s fairly relaxed. The start was the Forest Row Community Centre where you could enjoy a cuppa first, sort out any kit, pin on your number and basically wander out. Karen settled into breakfast to wait for her later start and the rest of us ‘faffed’ for a bit and headed out 15 minutes after the main start time. To give you an idea of the size of event there were 95 starters in total with 86 finishing.


These routes have to be navigated although you are given fairly comprehensive instructions to follow. This does take a little bit of settling into as we discovered to our cost; we went off route within the first mile and found ourselves at a dead end in a housing estate. So after starting slightly later than everyone else and adding a bit extra to our journey we estimated we were almost an hour behind the main pack of walkers before we’d really hit the trails but because the event was so relaxed time really didn’t matter.


Karen started later than us and we were looking forward to her catching us. Steph had already said that when Karen caught us she might fancy running on too so we tried to estimate when she’d reach us.

Although it was warm the weather was by no means a summer’s day. It drizzled and rained for the whole morning so our feet were wet within the first mile and there was much coat faffing between us all, but we soon settled in to reading the route and marching on though the Ashdown Forest. Despite the weather it was beautiful scenery and changed frequently between wooded footpaths, open bracken covered forest and lanes through pretty villages. It wasn’t long before the runners started to appear behind us and they sailed on past. Some familiar faces from other long distance events went by and we were very shortly joined by Karen who if I remember rightly joined us at about mile 6, well before we had predicted. Karen stayed with us for a couple of miles to our first check point at Gill’s Lap car park where Steph was glad to get rid of her walking poles and join Karen on her run.

Steve, Helen and I continued with our walk and soon caught the back of the walking pack, a group of 5 girls who were also new to LDWA and attempting the full 26 miles. We passed them, quickly leaving them behind and began to realise that time was actually getting quite tight to make the cut off at CP2 (13.8 miles). We made it though and we met a poor runner who had suffered a shoe malfunction and was standing barefoot in the pouring rain waiting for a ride back to Forest Row. After some cake, biscuits and squash we marched on. I have to say at this point Helen was leading the charge with the most incredible walk; Steve and I were half walking and half running along behind her trying to keep up with her amazing pace.


Once onto the Forest Way Cycle Path 21 we knew we weren’t going to make the cut off for CP3 if we continued to walk so for the first time that day we picked up our poles and ran. We made it with just a few minutes to spare at Balls Green (18.2 miles). The volunteers at the check points are lovely, they had saved food back for those of us towards the back and made sure we had everything we needed. The rain eased off and it started to turn into a nice afternoon. The cut off to the next check point was a little more generous so we were able to settle back into a good walk and enjoy the surroundings again. Helen and I were less than happy to read in the route instructions “Ahd between posts and in 80yrds TR to X ST (“Bull” sign) and ahd across field 280o to TK”.  Most people know I have an aversion to cattle but BULL!! That’s a whole new bull game!! However, we were 20 miles into our marathon distance so with our big girl pants on we crossed the style and headed across the field which was thankfully small without sight of the horned resident. Phew.

Once safe we headed on and did a bit of pole swapping…..Helen’s had once been up Kilimanjaro!


Check point 5 came and went at 22.3 miles where there seemed to be some concern from the course organiser that it was 100 yards in the wrong place – shame on the volunteer in the deckchair; now it was just the small matter of 6 more paragraphs on our sodden instructions to reach the finish. We caught up with another walker, a lady who was walking alone so we ruthlessly overtook her and congratulated ourselves on not being last – hooray!!.  (Those we had passed before had retired).

Again realising we were tight for time and in fear of not receiving our sew on badges for completing the course in the given time we picked up them poles and jogged, nay may I say ran the last couple of miles. It was a tense couple of miles and with a little bit of confusion again back in Forest Row we followed the main road back to the community centre where Karen and Steph were tucking into the post race light supper of quiche and salad. Certificates were printed and badges purchased.

It was a fantastic event and a really enjoyable day. The soaking wet feet for 26 miles were not a highlight but having great company, the fun of finding our way and the laughs we shared along the route made this another memorable BHR outing. I really hope to do more of these and perhaps add a little more running here and there. The 2017 High Weald Challenge is scheduled for Wadhurst in late June/early July so I’ll be keeping my eyes open for that one. One thing is for sure, although these are walking events they can’t be underestimated. To complete the distance in the given time you do have to keep a good pace and read the instructions carefully. There were 3 distances available on this day with 26 being the longest. I would recommend to everyone to check them out and giving them a go.


parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk

Starting back to front, I will start with the volunteer winner of the swim pass which goes to Mr Jay Wadey. Well done you. Happy Swimming.

parkrun doesn’t exist without volunteers, so if you can spare some time on a Saturday or on a Sunday morinng at junior parkrun, we would really appreciate it.

I have one more volunteer swim pass to give out at the end of August. Many of you will be away, but if your around please come along and lend your support your local parkrun.

We have had a couple of weeks this month with about 20 BHR taking part at Clair. Keep it going, its a great hill training session if nothing else and as always great to catch up with friends past and present.

A great added bonus to parkruns are the milestone tee shirts. If figures are up to date, 17,748 people have their 100 shirt. 699, have the 250 shirt and 3 have their 500 shirt. I have noted there are a handful of you with 5/6 more runs to reach those miles stones, so keep them runs coming. your doing great.  Eileen Adlam has now passed her 200th parkrun.

We had a celebratory third birthday parkrun in July, where are very own James Sorbie won the trophy for most points in the male points league. He was very chuffed. I would like to add his picture to this write up but as he had a pic in last month I wouldn’t want his head to grow. Well done James.
Now for Tilgate Parkrun. Nothing like our own. It was huge and it was busy. Couldn’t hear a word anyone was saying. But being used to parkrun it didn’t worry me. We have so much I value for our home parkrun. But I do have to say, the morning we went, it was hot, the sky was blue. There was a cheeriness around. I’m not one for views usually but running around the lake was beautiful and invigorating.  It felt uplifting.  It was a vision of calm while everyone seemed out to just enjoy the scenery. Because of a few walkers it took the pressure off charging off, which was kinda nice. I would go back for the beauty, but when it comes down to it, there really is no place quite like home.

Cheers and good bye July.



If you would like to contribute to the newsletter, especially with a race review or even a piece of creative writing about running (why you do it, why you like it and so on), please let us know.


Neil, Steve, Claire, Theresa and the Head Coaches.

July 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the July newsletter.

We have some an excellent piece from our head coach Sue, as well as some lovely race reports (including our amazing ladies running 100km from London to Brighton) and more news from Theresa in parkrun corner.


Coaches Corner by Sue Baillie

Running economics

Don’t worry I’m not talking about “Brexit/Bremain”!

I’m talking about running economically; burning your body fuel as economically as possible, allowing you to run further or faster before fatigue sets in.

It may also lower your risk of injury by distributing work load across more muscle fibres.

There are a number of approaches to becoming more economical.

The first we’re all familiar with- “the long run”. Adding  5 minutes to each long run is believed to improve aerobic fitness without increasing your risk of injury?

However, it maybe better to improve your stamina by building strength, speed and hills into your training plan!

Strength. There’s lots of research evidence indicating high-intensity strength training improves running economy, lower body exercises which use large amounts of muscle recruitment can be advantageous. Lunges and Squats use your own body as resistance training. I would recommend doing strength training a few days before your tough running sessions or the same day but after a tough run.

Change of pace.  By adding some fast running it challenges your body to adapt to the increased effort. You can do this by inserting intervals of increased speed into your run; Try adding 30 secs effort every half a mile, you can use a scale we often talk about at club RPE (rate of perceived exertion).  If your usual run is gentle & you can hold a normal conversation without gasping for air you may perceive that at 4 RPE, but your speed interval maybe 8 RPE where your now panting & puffing. This is just one example of speed play, there’s lots of variations on this theme. Variety is the spice of life & produces the desired training effect = enhanced performance.

Hills. Hill running recruits more muscle fibres than flat terrain does. Initially adding a hill into your run circuit will help build your base fitness, then challenge things further with either hill reps (charge uphill & jog back to the bottom & repeat 6 times. Or run a circuit with a few hills & try to maintain the same uphill as you did on the flat.

These are just a few examples of how mixing it up on your usual run will improve your strength, stamina and running economy, plus it makes a mundane run far more interesting & inspiring.

Enjoy the journey & see you out there

Sue X

Race reports

Flying the flag at The London Mile was Helen, this is her report of the race…

Amba Hotels City of London Mile.

On Sunday 18th June my daughter Amelia and I took a trip up to the city of London to run the Amba Hotels City of London Mile.

The Mile course is iconic, fast and flat. It starts at St Pauls Cathedral, runs towards the Mansion House before going towards the Bank of England. It then joins onto the London Olympic marathon course looping past the Guildhall before finishing along Cheapside.


The mile run is free to all entrants to allow everyone to run and enjoy participating in a race.

There were several different race waves, 8 general races, 3 family races, a womens race, a wheelchair race. A youth race and 2 elite races. There were all ages running. It was great watching the tiny tots sprinting to the finish line.

First stop having arrived at St Paul was to go to the race village to pick up our race packets. Everything was like a big race. Our numbers were chipped, there was an organised bag drop, portaloos etc.

The races started at 10am. We were in wave 7 and we were due to start at 11am. We were called at 10.45 and walked to the start. Each wave had about 100/150 people all of roughly equal ability.

11am came. The starting gun sounded and we were off. It is amazing what adrenaline does and we soon found ourselves at the half way point with cheering crowds along the route. 400 metre and finally 200metres. Now there were drums playing and more crowds cheering us towards the finish line.


Next, the most important bit. The bling! Definitely worth running for. Each year apparently there will be a different monument on the medal. This year was the Royal Exchange.

Within minutes of finishing a text had come through with finishing times.

Yes, it is a long way to come for a mile and the train fare to get there isn’t cheap but it was a fantastic, well organised run. It was great to see families running together and the faces of the tiny tots finishing with their parents dragging behind them.

We had a fun day and having run we then spent time in London seeing the sites.


London 2 Brighton 100k Challenge – Helen’s report of her experience.

It seemed a good idea, a great way to celebrate our “0” birthdays. Running, walking, crawling 100k. So the early bird entries opened and we entered.

Saturday 28th May arrived “Team 0 to Hero” made our way, blurry eyed to Richmond Old Deer Park for a 7.20 start. Registration was straight forward. We were give a map,a neck buff and a timing lanyard. It was then time to say goodbye to our wonderful crew and get warmed up.



7.20 arrived and we were off. Scared, excited, worried… Brighton seemed a long way away. All we had to do was follow the fluorescent pink arrows and when it was dark the glow sticks They were everywhere as long as we kept our eyes peeled we were not going to get lost!!

Before long we were running along the River Thames looking at the beautiful houses sitting on the banks heading to Kingston.

Along the route about every 12k, there were aid stations. These were really well stocked.



Crisps, nuts, sweets, noodles and more and around 25k there was a pick n mix. They were amazing. Sweet heaven!

The first aim was to get to Tulleys Farm at 56k.This was our half way point and major rest stop. By now our watches had given up, our feet and bodies were getting tired and our feet were yelling at us. So far we had gone up a few inclines, down a few slopes, crossed several railway lines including the London to Brighton line and gone over enough stiles. This part of the route was mainly on quiet country lanes with a little off road. We turned the corner and crossed the road to Tulleys and there was a mass of Burgess Hill Runners waiting to cheer us on. It was amazing seeing everyone there.


We were soon shooed off to get sorted at the aid station. Massages, Hot food, fresh clothes and feet plastered up it was time to say goodbye to everyone. Only another 44k to go.

We were now on familiar ground. Digging deep we continued. This part of the route was again on quiet country roads but there were also woods, uneven ground, mud, more stiles and bigger hills.


Ardingly, Lindfield, Scaynes Hill and eventually Wivelsfield Green. It was dark in this section too so head torches were needed and we were following hundreds of glow sticks

At Wivelsfield school there was more hot food and more fantastic Burgess Hill runners and only 20k to go.


Then to Plumpton college and over the Downs, a really big hill, nearly there. We only had to get to Brighton racecourse and 100k would have been done.


It was an amazing event to do. So well organised. The aid stations were heaven and there were the cleanest event portaloos we have ever seen.


After the final push up the hill on the race course we finished. As we crossed the line we were give a glass of bubbly, our wonderful medal and t shirt. If we had wanted it another hot meal and massage too.


Claire Giles at the Endure 24

Last year after I took part in the Bacchus Half Marathon the race that involves wine! The group I did this with said who is up for Endure 24 next year – I put my name down, and really didn’t have a clue what i had entered for!! But it sounded good, a weekend away and even better I will be running.

So what and where is it?

It’s like Glastonbury for runners, it’s a 24 hour running party in the woods. Free camping for runners, friends, family and support crews. 24 hour catering, showers and massage are available throughout the event weekend. The race village will be full of music and entertainment with live result updates screened throughout the race.

Mizuno Endure24 it mixes serious ultra-running with a 24 hour team relay race. Anyone of any ability level can take part and enjoy a challenging but rewarding weekend of trail running. The five mile race route through Wasing Woods is incredibly scenic and ends with a loop around the campsite.

Mizuno Endure24 is all about the teams, run as a pair, small team 3-5 runners or large team 6-8 runners.  You don’t need worry about how fast you are, just complete as many 5 mile laps as you can in 24 hours. Most people will complete 3 – 5 laps.

Paula picked me up on the Saturday morning (missed parkrun) we did think we may be able to sneak this in but we didn’t plan that right! The rest of our team went down there the Friday afternoon, got our camping space and pitched our tent.

When we arrived we got ourselves together, and worked out the running order. I was running three of the 5 mile laps, one around 5pm, one around 10.30pm-11pm, and one 6am. We thought give each around an hour to do the lap, then we can gauge the times after the first lap. Worked out we were around 45-50 mins each.

We had a look around, got to grips of where everything was, and how far it would take us from our tent to the hand over pen / start.

At midday the race began, then we either got something to eat at the events tent, or we chilled out back at our own tents. Then each of us made our way to the start, where we did the hand over of the wrist band, and then took our turn to run.

I took over from Paula. My first lap i did enjoy, the first bit was a hill, and it did take a while to get my breathing sorted, it was humid. My words were humid, hilly, heartbreak hill – that was a killer, but was good. I then met Brian at the handover and he ran the next lap.

I had a look around before i made my way back to the tent.

Around 8.30-9pm went down to the start, but went to the music area, where they had the football on the big screen, was a great atmosphere, England were playing. Lots of cheering and shouting!

Then it was my turn for my second lap. Getting darker now, and in the woods you definitely needed  a head torch.

I took the wrist band, and borrowed Paula’s head torch and off I went for lap 2. I really enjoyed the night run, it was still warm, but cooler than before, quieter except for the plodding of runners, and all you could see was the light from the torches. This was great practice for me as I am running the Downslink in Oct. I found Heartbreak hill easier this time around, music was playing at the Campervan, going through the woods, there were fairy lights. Everyone was motivating each other. I came into the finish to hand over to Brian, was slightly difficult to find him. Then I had a bacon roll from the tent around 11.45pm, then I made my way back to the tent. I chatted for a bit then got myself ready for a doze. Set the alarm for my next lap.

We worked out that in the end we had picked up on speed, and at times we were an hour ahead of the schedule, this meant a few of us ran 4-5 laps.

I got up at 4.55am, made my way down to the start, I saw Paula disappear off at the start of the race, so I thought ah the times have all got out, so I found our other team member who said yeah he ended up doing a double as he came in quicker. So i went back up to the tent, then back down for an hour later, where I ran my third lap.

It felt weird running again in the daylight, it was still hot, hilly but loved it.

Got to the finish and handed over to Lucy – as Brian picked up an injury during the night run, and I said I would run his lap. But in the end I didn’t need to.

Went back to the tent for a lovely bacon roll, salmon and cheese bagel and a cuppa!

We packed up, and got things ready so we didn’t have a rush at the end.

We watched our last team members come in after their last laps, and collected our bling!

The weekend finished midday Sunday. I completed 15 miles over the weekend.

What a fab weekend of running – I definitely recommend it.


parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk

We can never  guarantee a day of bright, warm sunshine on our little island of England. But we can guarantee that  Saturday mornings at Clair Park and other park runs around the country, are filled with willing volunteers to make sure the run is a safe and happy one, and runners for a variety of reasons, get to the start line at 9am, hoping for that seemingly elusive PB.

Last month I mentioned an exciting incentive to get you all volunteering in June.. This months lot at Clair were

Jay Wadey
Kirsty Armstrong
Paul Russell
Malcolm Slater
Jill Bennett
Ann Savidge
Simon Thompson
Caz Wadey
Helen Pratt
Dave Woodhouse
Alice Burdsall
Nigel Cruttendon
Dave Oldfiield

The only other ones I know of for Junior Park run are:

Anita Harris
James Sorbie.

“Well done”, is a generic quick and easy verbal comment. Reality is, parkrun cannot operate with runners alone. Great when weather is warm, but those freezing blustery and wet days are not fun. Holding timing watches, number checking , handing out tokens. Your feet and fingers become numb. You give up your precious time. You give up a lie in in bed. You are generous in kind and spirit. Don’t underestimate your value and think ” you did nothing really”. You are the core of the parkrun. Long may it live.

Now all you amazing volunteers were put in a little hat for a draw. Winner of the Swim family day Pass at the Triangle…….., drum roll please,……. goes to Kirsty Armstrong. (we will get this to you)

Now for the participants. As without you the volunteer crew would  be redundant.

We have a newbie to parkrun. Margaret John. Welcome aboard.

Personal Bests this month are from Christine Jones, Lucy Norton, Anna Wooler,

Rebecca Norton (x2), Emma Leeson, Lynette Brown (x2), who throughout May and June has achieved 5PB’s out of 7 runs. Exceptional.

Great runs from you all.

Two giants leaps for Emma Leeson and Jamies Sorbie on their 100th Park Run. Whoop Whoop!  And to celebrate it was also the last parkrun before James and Hannah got married, so James ran in a wedding dress.


This month (July) there will be another swim pass up for volunteers to win. You just need to volunteer. We get around 5 BHR a week (not incl. Caz &Jay in the core team who are there week in week out).  We must have at least a couple of hundred members. Many who just find 9am too early. Get out of bed and come and join the motley ever happy company at Clair parkrun.

Bye for another sun shiny month, Theresa C.

As always, a big thank you to all of the contributors.  Without you, we don’t have a newsletter.

If you would like to contribute in any way, especially with race reports, please contact me, Steve Bird or Claire Giles.

Hope you have a great July and enjoy the sunshine.



The Annual Black Cap Handicap Race

Each June we hold our annual Black Cap Handicap Race.

Here are a few musings from your Race Director, Mr. James Sorbie:

The Blackcap Handicap is one of the more unique races you’ll get the chance to run each year with your fellow Burgess Hill Runners. Over the last few weeks my brain has been ticking over with the organisation of this race and trying to put on something brilliant for the club. I think you’ll agree that the true measure of a successful Blackcap race is everybody finishing together. For me I get a huge buzz seeing a big crowd of runners descend towards the finish because it means I’ve done a decent job of predicting your times. For the runners it means that the competitive element is truly fair and that’s what I honestly strive for when I slave away at your handicaps.

As your race director I have to confess I have only ever run the race once myself, I think it was 2012 and I was lucky enough to work my way up to 3rd. As a pretty competitive chap I loved the concept and wanted to get involved more in it and as I thought 3rd place would probably mean a big old handicap the next year it made sense to me to take some time off of running it. Keith Delderfield had previously done the handicapping (and many before him) and I think he was looking to hand it over so I was straight on the email asking if I could take it on. Keith gave me a handover year where we both handicapped you all. A lot of our handicaps were similar and I have to hand it to Keith that whilst I spent a lot of time on the scientific approach, he used quite a simple method of ranking the runners in order based on things such as the WSFRL results….you can probably guess, Keith’s methods turned out to be more accurate (we did actually check after the dust had settled!).

Since taking over the the sole responsibility of handicapping I haven’t been deterred from persisting with my ‘scientific’ approach and in the last few weeks a lot of runners have asked me “how do you decide what the handicaps should be?”. I think a few people have regretted asking the question, I’ve seen their eyes glaze over after the first few seconds of something I could talk about for an hour or so. However, I am a bit of an excited little puppy when it comes to this race so I have written a little guide on how I do it. If you’re not really into reading about spreadsheets or strange mathematical formulae I warn you that this article is heading that way.

The first thing I do is collect a list of runners names. That bit was probably obvious, but it’s not always easy. Last year Indiana Jones entered (I suspect one of the coaching team was responsible for this) and some runners entered more than once (I think 5 times was the record, good on you for being so eager!). These things actually brought a smile to my face when up at midnight staring at the Blackcap spreadsheet but I am thankful no one particularly abused our the online entry system. In 2016 I tried to make it simpler using Facebook and email (back to the old system).

The next thing I do is collect a list of races that BHR attend. The fun run league is a godsend for me because we have such a great turn out and it’s easy for me to grab the results from a central repository. The parkrun website is another source for good race info. Before I do anything with these results though, I rank them in order based on 3 (very nerdy) criteria. I score each race based on how similar the distance and course profile are to that of Blackcap. I also score it based on how close to the Blackcap race date these are because if there is any change in a runner’s ability then the nearer the better. This year 38 races are on the list and just for interest, the top 3 races for ‘relevance’ were Hedgehoppers 5, Trundle Hill and the Burgess Hill 10k (although I have had to be careful with that one due to stye course distance lacking accuracy).

Next up, for each runner I take their 3 highest ranked races from the list. If they have any obvious outliers, for example they consistently seem to be running 10k in 50 minutes but have one that is over 60 minutes, I consider looking at their next one on the list. Now obviously none of the races are exact same length as Blackcap, so this is where it gets exciting (or boring if you like). There’s a commonly known formula for predicting race times when the distances differ from the race with the known time. It was created by an engineer and marathon runner called Pete Riegel and Runner’s World first published it in 1997. This is the formula I also use. Time 2 = Time 1 x (Distance 2 / Distance 1) ^ 1.06

Essentially this is saying that you don’t run 10k in exactly twice your 5k time, the “to the power of 1.06” takes care of that. So when I’ve applied that to all the times it’s converted into a predicted time for the Blackcap course.

But that’s not the end. For the first time in 2015 I made a minor adjustment to try to give the really fast boys and girls a little bit more chance. The race winner at Blackcap usually beats their handicap by about 3-5 minutes. For the likes of Paul Sargent (currently the course record holder) to beat his predicted time he’d have to be running it in around 26 minutes to stand a chance. Whilst some of those faster people may not be that bothered about winning, my aim is to make it fair, so I have written a little coefficient this year which I hope makes it even fairer than usual. This doesn’t mean these folks will have an easy ride, they are still going to have to seriously out-run their predicted times, but I am hoping it’ll close up that finishing pack even more.

Finally, I go back to Keith’s proven methods and validate everything by looking at the rankings in the league races etc. After all this ‘science’, sometimes you can end up giving somebody a much bigger handicap than someone who has consistently beaten them in every race so there has to be some room for adjustment.

In order to start everyone in groups at the start without total chaos I also round up or down everyone’s handicaps to the nearest 15 seconds.

As you can appreciate, if you haven’t done a lot of races for me to work on, it’s harder for me to handicap you and if I’m honest I tend to over handicap rather than under handicap if I’m short of info, as Indiana Jones…oops, I mean Ian Jones….will testify to after last year. I imagine this article will be published after the 2016 Blackcap race has been run and I am hopeful everyone is reading it thinking “wow, that’s how he got my handicap spot on” rather than “so this is how he made such a mess of it”!

Thanks, James (Race Director)

June 2016 Newsletter

Welcome to the June newsletter.

May has been busy.  Really busy.  We have finally got out on the trails and we know how happy that makes us feel.  It’s so much more enjoyable with the warmer temperatures and the longer evenings.

The race reports are a little longer this month, but I guess that trying to condense 2 days of the Green Belt Relay into 400 words was never a possibility.  We hope that you enjoy them.

This month we have some brilliant race reports, updates from the social committee, Theresa’s update from parkrun and a lovely Coaches Corner piece from Andrew Baillee.


Coaches Corner with Andrew Baillee


A few weeks ago I overheard one of our runners say (as another runner went past), you know, in my mind I picture myself running like her, but it never seems to look like it in reality!


Aside from identifying with that sentiment, this is something we could all benefit from.  Positive mental imagery has been used in science and sport for many years, with many good examples of top sportsmen using this to achieve their goals. Jack Nicklaus, still the most successful golfer of the modern era, winning eighteen grand slam events between 1962 and 1986, never hit a golf ball, not even in practice, without first picturing the flight of the ball in his mind. If you watch the world downhill skiers when they prepare, they go through the route in their mind, living each turn as though they were physically doing it.


So, what can that mean for us? Well, it doesn’t mean we should be envisaging the route for each planned race (although if that works for you, please continue!). What I’m talking about is our own technique. For me, looking at other runners puts into focus what we can learn from them, and I can always find something good about every runner’s technique, which can be a pointer for my own running technique.


We can learn from our own club members.  For example, when I’m running downhill, I try and picture the relaxed confidence of Trevor Symes running downhill. There are very few runners I know who can’t nail a downhill section like Trevor, and his technique of no fear, once mastered, can gain you vital seconds and indeed positions in a race.


Paul Sargent has a nice relaxed running style, which belies his speed. Relaxed shoulders and upper body, and a running style which doesn’t look any different from the start of a race to the end of it, no matter the distance! From Paul we can all learn that a strong core makes everything look a lot easier, which it is! Jon Boxall is also one to look at for a strong core.


Cadence (the number of steps per minute) is something I work on. The suggested perfect cadence is around 180-190 (depending upon height), with the science being that a higher cadence promotes a midfoot strike. One person who I think has good cadence is Jason Collett. If you watch Jason’s head, you will also note a lack of vertical movement – no head-bobbing at all. Mark Nicholls is also a good one to watch for cadence.


Another thing to look at is leg action. Legs working well and effectively will also work efficiently for you, making each step easier in the long run (pun intended!). Watching Glyn Merritt running at pace shows a good technique – his legs have an almost piston movement, with high knees and heels tucked up under the glutes while the opposite leg pushes down and back with each step. Good extension of the hips when driving back too.


Good arm work is also important; driving back with every step assists in the forward movement (evidence of Newton’s 3rd law – For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction). Jon Herbert is a good one to watch at races for this.


I realise I’m missing out at least half the club by commenting on the men only! That’s partly because I’ve spent a lot of my time in the performance squad, which is short on women most of the time.  However, I believe men can learn from the running styles of women, and vice versa; there are just as many good examples of female runners in our club as men. Liz Carter has a good strong upright technique showing evidence of a strong core, with good strong arms; Catherine Kempton’s leg action is also one to follow, along with a good lean. I recently watched Alice Birdsall on club night and was impressed with her heal pick-up and general leg action. I could go on, but I hope I’ve made my point.


This is not to say that my own technique is perfect – far from it! That’s one reason why I watch other people’s.  And If I haven’t mentioned you earlier, please don’t take that as an assumption that you have nothing of note to credit you in your technique, more that I haven’t really had the opportunity to see you run!


One last word of warning, though – technique can take months to change, given that it’s been that way for probably most of your life, and from experience when you think you’ve made a big change, it’s doubtful anyone else would notice a difference! But remember every run is an opportunity for us all to work on technique, and every run with the club is an opportunity to study and learn from your fellow club members!


Happy running, BHR!


A few links for those with more interest:



London Marathon – 24th April 2016

(By Oli Dewdney)

So I’m quite bad at trying to remember what I did yesterday, but here I go with a report on the Virgin London Marathon 2016. There I was in October arriving home and there was the bumble bee…a yes! I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry but I think with the odds against you, you never quite expect it.


So a week after the Brighton marathon, I was absolutely ecstatic to give my all to this amazing race and the whole day was a lot less nervy than I was expecting. This was mainly because a group of BHR members got the train together and everyone offers so much support to each other, even though it was wayyyy too early for me, we had a laugh and got to the event nice and early.

We arrived to the big event and of course took the obligatory selfie with other blue starters. Everyone was really excited for this and it’s easy to tell why. Almost 40,000 people run this event, spectators line the entire course and the iconic course has incredible views. They pulled no punches this year and with the 1 millionth finisher crossing the line it was aptly named “one in a million”.


So I set off, and the conditions were perfect, much cooler than the week before. I knew it wouldn’t be particularly quick but I wanted to just enjoy the day. I decided to run right next to the fences the whole race, to give high fives and soak up the support!

The incredible views of Tower Bridge, Westminster, Buckingham Palace and Cutty Sark were amongst some really mind blowing moments which really give you a great feeling.

The supporters are non-stop! And this is perhaps what makes the whole event a bit easier, my pace over the event was quite consistent, though not spectacular – I ran the whole marathon, and this is because the crowd just keep you going. I approached mile 21 and my family and girlfriend were there to support and took the below photo. This was my face the entire way, I ran the whole event with a massive smile on my face because I just enjoyed the whole experience.

I got great support from incredible BHR supporters, as well as seeing Colin Jackson and getting a high five while screaming like a fan girl in his face! One big hug from Neil Dawson later and I was on my way to the finish. Mile 23 and the time just flies from here. The noise was unbelievable and the best part is Westminster. I kept smiling as I made the way to the finish, the last mile was pretty tough as at this point you are drained but crossing the line was the most rewarding experience. We all run for the bling and the VLM bling was lush. I finished in a respectable 4 hours 27.


For anyone who is considering running the VLM – I can thoroughly recommend, and I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you get a place! J


The Bluebell 10 Mile – 24th April 2016

(By Oliver Jones)

We arrived at the car park the south side of the A27 at about 9:30. The course offers two car parks depending on the weather, the second car park which we were in is nearer Angmering village. It was about a ten minute walk to the Fox Pub where the race started, a nice garden with a big Marquee to watch the goings on of the London Marathon and to put your bags in.

The race started promptly at 10:30 from further down the lane from the pub. You start off on the road and for the first mile you gradually work your way up the hill towards and into the woods.


As you got into the woods you could see immediately why this was called the bluebell run, although not out fully it was a beautiful sight. The route took you through the woods for about two miles before you started going down the downs and out into the grassland. You carried on following the footpaths on mile four and the course had a double back on itself where you could see and cheer on fellow runners as you went past them.

I was running with Nigel and this point and we could see fellow BHR so I cheered them on as always, Jay cheered ‘go on the beast’ which I responded to. Nigel was doing fine and he didn’t mind me pushing on a bit, the next challenge was a big hill at about the five mile mark. I saw Benny gradually climbing up the hill and had him in my sights.


As I got to the top the hill you could see a load of sheep panicking because of all the runners, they had decided to run towards the gate I was meant to be going through. A bit of sheep avoidance and trying not to scare them too much and Benny and I made it through the gate. A track you followed then went past some buildings and it worked its way back to the forest, me and Benny were having a bit of a battle at this point and we overtook each other a couple of times.

The course went back into the woods at about mile nine and you saw a lot more bluebells than before, the tracks were not too muddy and there were families out for a Sunday stroll with their dogs. I had managed to catch up with Benny and pushed on a bit. In the process of pushing on towards the final stages of the race you cross over the course where you go out from about the one mile mark on towards the two mile mark.

I managed to increase my speed and could see Simon in the distance, somehow I managed to catch him and we ran towards the finish together. We both saw the massive hill that led to the finish, as we went up the hill we saw James out supporting the club and waiting for Hannah. Simon had the stronger finish and pushed up the hill beyond me. The finish was in the back of the Fox Pub, it was a nice finish as the spectators and other runners could see you go across the line.

After the finish you had a selection of Cliff Bars to choose from. Overall a very good race and the BHR ladies did very well in getting first and second place.

I really liked the race and would do it again, it is on the same day as the London marathon so if you don’t get into the marathon it is a nice alternative.


Hedgehoppers 5 (WSFRL) – 8th May 2016

(By Caz Wadey)

The Hedgehoppers 5, a race that I only really remembered because of the long walk to the start and the fact it was my first fun run of 2015 after a few months of not running and I moaned my way around it complaining of the ‘never ending hills’!

This year I decided to chill out about it and truly take it as a ‘fun run’. I was going to run with Hannah and we were taking it easy and enjoying the scenery and as it turns out, the glorious weather!


It is a longish walk to the start, but when you are chatting away and the sun is shining down on you and all you can see ahead and behind you is a sea of blue vests and t-shirts, it really doesn’t take that long.

We all congregated on a chalky path up on the downs, all very relaxed and the supporters got comfy on the grass verges in the sunshine and I made sure I could see Hannah before we started. I was chatting to Steve Roberts and all of a sudden I heard someone say ‘We’re off!’ and that was it. We all started trotting along (some faster than others) and Hannah and I got in to our stride. It always takes me a good mile to get going and the fact that most of the first 2 miles are on an upward climb did make it feel a little harder. The marshals were plentiful and encouraging and it wasn’t too long before the path makes way to open fields and you are winding your way up towards Devils Dyke.


There was a lovely breeze at this stage and stunning views and I found myself really enjoying the run. I had also forgotten to wear my Garmin, which certainly made me more relaxed, as I wasn’t constantly checking my pace or my mileage.

We had a little walk on one of the final climbs up towards Devils Dyke and were joined by Neil. We were having a little joke with him when he spotted Jon Lavis in the next field with the camera, so we broke in to a run although we did stop to pose for this shot! It really was a beautiful spot for a photo opportunity!


You climb up again from here until you reach a loop back point, so at this stage you pass some of the runners ahead of you which always encourages a few ‘Blue Army’ or ’Burgess Hill’ shouts and because there are always a lot of us there are quite a few of these! We had to pass a few cows as we turned round, but even this didn’t bother me as I was feeling good and loving the run!

From this point we ran back across another field and downhill (hurrah!) before we joined the path again to retrace our steps back to the start/finish point. The ground was quite uneven so there was a little bit of dodging and jumping about which keeps you on your toes, but Hannah and I were now running at a reasonable pace although hadn’t stopped chatting the whole way round!

We knew there was an uphill finish so were prepared for this and there were a few little inclines before we hit the last hill, but even this wasn’t as bad as I had remembered and we were getting a few shouts of ‘Come on Burgess Hill’ from the marshals as we ran past. When you reach the top of the hill you are immediately looking for the finish (well Hannah and I were!) but it isn’t too far from here and you can hear the shouts from the people cheering everyone in and always the incredible support from the Blue Army who are always on mass at the finish line.

It was a truly lovely run which was obviously helped by the weather, but because I just treated it as a relaxed morning run in the sunshine with a good friend, it made it so much better than last year and the icing on the cake was to find out that evening that team BHR finished in 1st place!!! Wooohooooo!!


The Greenbelt Relay – 21st & 22nd May 2016

(By Paula Ridley)

The Green Belt Relay is an annual 22-stage running relay race around 220 miles of the Green Belt around the outside of London over a single weekend. The course mainly follows footpaths, towpaths or minor roads and is organised by The Stragglers running club. Teams are formed of 11 people with each runner taking on one stage each day.

Although the race is a relay, each stage starts at a fixed time. This allows each stage to be a competitive race in its own right, and also allows teams of all different standards to stay roughly together as they advance along the route. Each stage averages about 10 miles but difficulty levels (from 0 – easy to 10 – bloody hard) and distances vary.  This is also a self-marshalled course, so not only do you run but you have marshalling responsibilities too; providing a great opportunity to cheer on your runners and of course all the other teams.

Well that’s the sensible bit, mostly plagiarised from the event website which gives you the facts but doesn’t begin to touch on the spirit, madness, incredible logistics and sheer fun of the weekend. I should say, due the nature of the event I can only write this report from my own perspective and as I was the driver/passenger of 1 out of 3 buses I can only report on a portion of the event.  I could of course give you the results, but what I really want to share is the guts of it all so I apologise in advance therefore if this report doesn’t capture everyone’s best moments of an incredibly memorable weekend. I also apologise for the length but this race has 22 starts, 22 finishes and is two days long!

It all starts back in November when the wonderful Neil Dawson and Jay Wadey begin putting the teams together. This is BHR’s 3rd year and we’ve grown by a team each year so with the interest of 33 runners piqued the process begins. Team captains are named as Neil, Jay and Andy Sayers and it’s a meeting in Weatherspoons in February which reveals the legs carefully chosen for each runner. A draw takes place to establish which team we’re all in….will it be #wadeyswinners, #sayersshortarses (that name came about after all those vertically challenged were randomly selected for the same team – sorry folks!) or #dawsonsdreams. It’s also on this night we find out which minibus we’ll be riding in, who our drivers will be and who will be running the same legs as us….company or competition!? How Neil and Jay put this all together I’ll never know; the logistics of getting three teams of 11 runners around a 220 mile course, with marshalling duties too is mind blowing. However they do it, with great finesse, and we’re all sent away to research our legs. Needless to say, with 3 months to go there are inevitably movers and shakers so the organisation never rests. Just the fundamentals of finding 3 minibuses within budget, making the hotel arrangements, getting everyone fed are all projects of their own.

So May arrives and the boys go off to a captains meeting before getting us all together again in the Block and Gasket 8 days ahead of the event to provide us with our GBR T shirts, race numbers and final instructions….. It’s all systems go and excitement is growing. Sleeps are being counted.

The morning of the race arrives and 33 runners, reserves and a kindly driver (Kevin) converge at 6:15am ready to head off to Hampton Court in the three Convent buses, of all things, organised by Alan. The excitement is palpable and the journey there is full of banter, laughs and silliness. Just in that short journey I’ve learnt more about my comrades’ bodily functions then I ever should know and this theme continues with startling frequency throughout the two days. As a club we choose to all join together at the start line to see our first runners off, in this case Oliver Jones, Nigel Cruttenden and Alice Birdsall. I’m not going to name every runner for every leg in the body of this report but these three had the honour of kicking the weekend of awesome running off so are well worth a mention. With only 40 teams the start line looks nothing like the events we are used to, even compared to smaller events like Parkruns. I’m in no way exaggerating when I say some of the other clubs are serious in every way which can make toeing the start lines potentially intimidating places. However, what is glaringly obvious is the incredible support BHR have for every runner, whatever their ability and this is what makes being on the start lines nothing but fun. With our pals making more noise than anyone else (and generally behaving like hooligans) the nerves just disappear. So as the first leg heads out from Hampton Court BHR splits into three buses and begin their journeys around the first half of the course. With clever organisation as one bus drops a runner to a start line another is picking their runner up from a finish at the same point so we continually cross paths with the other two BHR vans.


In Vehicle 2 we head off with me driving and Steve R navigating. We make our way to Boveney well ahead of our runners start time and wander into a huge Triathlon event just down the river where we stop for coffee, food and a little mingling. We’ve only been there a few minutes and Alan’s gained temporary custody of a Springer spaniel but his offer to hold the attractive owners bacon roll is declined…. unlucky Alan. With breakfast consumed we cheer the first three runners from our bus off and then head for Little Marlow. We’re able to hang around to watch Catherine, Emma and Liz cross the finish line of their stage looking fantastic. With Alan, Simon and Miranda off and running we make our way to Little Marlow to pick them up. It’s an 11 mile run for them but a 29 mile drive for us. Fortunately we are there well in time and as we park up in the local pub we feel it only right to be patrons too. With a swift half knocked back we’re able to quickly catch up with the BHR crew who have just sent Gary W, Glyn and John P off, now heading for Great Kingshill.


And so it continues….. There are three BHR runners stomping along The Green Belt Way at any given moment between 8:30am until around 8:15pm when Ann, Cath and Kim cross the line at Blackmore, Essex. During this time each vehicle must pick up a marshalling responsibility too. Ours was whilst Jon, Steve and Jill were dashing between Chipperfield and St Albans so we were able to cheer them on part way through their leg.  We also had to provide water for all runners and ensure Caution Runner signs were in place on a very busy road. Crossing 40 runners across some heavy traffic was rather hair raising for us all, apart from Alan for obvious reasons, but completed successfully. I should say at this point BHR gained a reputation for supportive, noisy, marshalling described at the closing speech as ‘mini raves’ and contributing to us being presented a special award…more on that at the end. We were just able to see Jill and Steve finish as we leapt out of our van at St Albans (Jon L had stormed home just before) and we were able to catch up with the team who had sent Jay, Flic and Neil off towards Letty Green. As the day goes on the pickup and drop offs prove to get tight and with some unlucky traffic Steve G, myself and Theresa are launched from the bus at Dobbs Weir into the arms of Emma and Liz who direct us swiftly to the start line (via a loo) just in time to shout our numbers to the timekeepers and hear the starters horn. So I’m up and running with 2 fantastic companions on my first leg in three years, yippee…and despite poor Theresa suffering badly with her asthma and after almost being tempted into the house of a couple of ladies offering wine we completed our 10.6 mile leg to High Beach. We had wonderful support from our van crew who had made their way down the course a little way to find us and run us home. This was the end of the first day’s madness for our van and it was time to make our way to the hotel.


The Premier Inn, Brentwood can only really be described as colourful. It’s a popular spot for hen and stag nighters, illustrated well by the young lady in veil carrying a large inflatable willy, but then we’re not exactly sedate so we fit in rather well. It’s almost 10pm when we make our way to the very local curry house who are ready and waiting for us, already prepped with our food orders. The beer flows, the curry is greedily swallowed and stories of the first day shared. We celebrate Kim’s birthday eve with some beautiful cupcakes presented by Helen and although most of us are ready to crash into bed at 12am I’m led to believe others continued on in another bar. Somehow, during all this James and Steve B have managed to fit a visit in to Wembley to watch the FA Cup final and make it back to join us for curry. Shame about the result boys but I think the need to drown their sorrows, or Steve’s at least, may have instigated the after dinner drinks!

The second day is a repeat of the first, with some of us being lucky enough to fit breakfast in before leaving the hotel. Unlucky all those on the first bus out! Sadly, the first day had thrown up a few injuries and with Emma and Theresa making the sensible decision to sit the second day out some shuffling takes place. Daniel volunteers himself up to run 2 legs (incredible), Cath moves to join Catherine and Liz, whilst Karen takes up the reins with me and Steve on the final leg of the day. Everybody has sterling runs, especially considering we’re all on tired legs so the second day consists of top efforts, ice creams, some more hydration and more hilarious banter. Particularly worth a mention I heard Simon A say quite casually that his leg on the second day is the furthest he’s ever run. It also later transpires that Jon L has broken the V50 stage record for leg 13. Helen also runs a leg within cut off ahead of her London to Brighton challenge the following week and Steve G and I are rather delighted to come in within cut off on the second day too. The in-between race conversations prove to remain as bizarre and inappropriate as the first day and have no place here, I’ll just let you imagine. The races themselves bring consistent feedback of “beautiful views”, “stunning scenery” and such like. We really are blessed to have the opportunity to run some of these trails.  I know more great running accomplishments were happening in the other BHR vans so apologies to them for not having the details of everyone’s brilliance.


As the second day passes again the start times get tight, this is all part of the fun. Simon’s driving is put to the test again when he is asked to deliver me, Karen and Steve G to a start the GPS says is 35 minutes away in 30 minutes. With his top driving we just about make it and again are launched from the van with moments to spare before we’re off and heading just over 9 miles back to where the craziness started on Saturday morning. In fact it finishes just nearby at the Hawker Centre where a BBQ, bar and awards await us. So with us three and 37 others running everyone else make their way there to form the most spectacular finish funnel. I say spectacular because I cannot describe the loveliness of running 9 miles along a very peaceful, very tranquil tow path to suddenly pop out into a mass of people and wonderful noise. Others who have done this leg before us will know what I mean but it is just the most incredible feeling. An Ealing Eagle was waiting just before the finish to hand me a beer as the three of us joined hands and dashed for the line. Karen described it as feeling as though she was flying and a moment she’ll keep forever and Steve G and I can only echo this. The sudden lift you get from 40 teams celebrating the end of a fantastic event is just brilliant. And to top off the weekend in true Burgess Hill Runners style we are awarded The Wissahickon Trophy as the most supportive club for the second year running. I don’t think we could have been any more proud of our teams, our club or of Neil and Jay for making this extraordinary weekend work. The words, fantastic, brilliant, wonderful etc have been used over and over. It’s all of those and I can only finish by saying…..count me in for next year.



Thank you Neil Dawson and Jay Wadey, simply amazing.


The 3 Forts Half Marathon – 2nd May 2016

(By Neil Dawson)

This was my first 3 Forts Half Marathon.  In fact it was my first hilly trail half.  I have done the 3 Forts Marathon twice, so knew what it was all about and this year just fancied doing the Half.

That was a pretty good choice, given the recent illness, as I would not have enjoyed the extra 14 miles.

They call this event ‘The Tough One’ and there is no doubt why.  This is the elevation graph for the Half.  The 27 mile race is certainly no less up and down.


So, 3 Forts.  It’s low key.  Around 400 doing the Marathon (well 27 miles actually) and the same number doing the Half.  The Marathon starts 30 minutes before the Half, which works perfectly with the narrow paths in the first 2 miles.


They send you your chip timing race number in the post or you pick it up on the day.  It’s easy.  Bag drop takes 30 seconds and they ask for a donation to their charity.  There is hot food and drink available.  Toilets, shelter, a group warm up.  You know, pretty much everything that you need.

The race heads out of the field at Hill Barn Rec in Worthing, up a road for 200 yards (this is the only section of road that you see – you come down the same section on the way back) and then you’re on trails.  Oh yeah.  Trails.  Thank god for that.  Bye-bye tarmac.  A summer of trails, grass and hills beckon.


It is 3.2km straight up to Cissbury Ring.  It flattens out in a couple of places, but it is nothing more than a small respite.  Anyone at my pace will walk up here (if they have any sense).


What goes up must come down.  That’s what happens from 3.2k to 5.3k.  You pass the first aid station and enjoy the freedom to stretch your legs.



This section is very empowering and great fun.  Best make the most of it.  What goes down must go up, especially when the high point of the race is Chanctonbury Ring.

From 5.3km to 10.8km the elevation varies from steep uphill to slightly uphill, with the odd short section of rolling ups and downs.


And this is the view back down the hill.


The views are just fantastic.  One of the good things about walking up the hills is that you get the chance to take in the countryside.



And the hills keep coming until you reach the highest point of the race at Chanctonbury Ring.  By the way, don’t expect that to be the end of the hills.


From there, you have 3k of decent.  It’s lovely.  It can be a little tough on the knees and quads, but most of it has a gradient that is gentle enough for you to run it comfortably.


And then comes the first sting in the tail.  Well to be honest, it’s the first of 2 stings in the tail.

There are 2km of ascent and it’s pretty steep in places.  I was wondering if I’d be able to run sections of it, given that I was only doing the Half and I’d had to walk it on the Marathon.  No chance.  I had to walk most of it.

You then have around 2km of descent and flat until you meet Cissbury Ring again.  Once you have walked over it (no way at this stage am I thinking about running up here) it’s downhill all the way.  You are now retracing your steps to the start.

If anyone wants to run this race next year, I’d highly recommend it.  It’s very well organised.  The timing is done by chip.  They have cake at the end.  The marshals are lovely.  The course is tremendous.  Not easy at all, but flat is dull.  For the medal hunters out there, the lump of metal is nice as well.



parkrun corner with Theresa Chalk

Behold!  The sound of splashing, the sound of laughter, children giggling.  Yes, this could be you and your family. Read on to find out how and you don’t even have to buy anything.

A huge round of applause for Emma Leeson who got to 100 this month. Yes! she does look very good for her age.

This May you BHR have travelled as far away as Camperdown Parkrun, Dundee. We’ve also ran at Eastbourne, Whistable, Brighton and Hove, Horsham, Preston Park, Hove Prom and our very home one, Clair Park.

We’ve had 6 first timers : Michelle Sutherland, Rebecca Norton, Lucy Norton, Anna Wooler, Romy Conroy and Mark Grigg. Well done all of you it’s a brave step to make.

PB’s achieved this month include: Neil Phillpot, Emma Leeson, Ollie Bennett, Andrew Ground, Lynette Brown, Gayle Tyler, Tlou Mati and Faith Parker. Magnificent runs.

Splish and a splash almost there.

Fourteen of you have helped this month in  a volunteer role. Your parkrun needs you. It needs more of us.

Do you remember your parkruns?  The marshals clapping and cheering you as you passed by. Now imagine doing Clair (four Laps) on your own in silence. Doesn’t it make a huge difference knowing people are encouraging you and it lifts your spirits and keeps you going?  You could be one of those people. You just need to have a pair of legs and two hands.

Now, everyone who volunteers this month, your name will go into a draw and the lucky recipient will receive a family swim pass (woohoo I hear you say) donated by The Triangle. Now with summer fast approaching you’ll be wanting to win this. If you volunteer at a parkrun other than Clair , this month please let me know.

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So have a good month, here’s to new goals and new faces




Social Committee with Karen Harvey

We all had a great time at the marathon meal. 85 of us were there to celebrate the achievements of many members. Well done to those that received a prize!
Up coming events
15th June: As is tradition, we shall be heading to the White Horse in Ditching after the Blackcap race for a celebratory drink. Food can be ordered from the pub too.
Sunday 24th July: the lovely Pete Crowley is hosting our annual bbq. We like to thank those of you that volunteered at the Downlands Dash and to have a lovely summer family day together. This is being held after the seven stiles race this year so you can go home, get changed and head over to Petes, bring your own food, picnic blanket and swim things, bbqs and drinks are provided 🙂
The Social team are also organising some other events including a wine tour, a brewery tour and a bingo night to go on over the coming months. information to follow shortly!
If you have any suggestions, feedback or would like to offer help, a venue etc please get in touch –
Karen, Nick and Neil.
Well that’s it for the June Newsletter.  Thank you for reading.  If you have any ideas for the future or would like to contribute, please let me know on
Take care and enjoy the sunshine.
Neil and the Newsletter Team.