Hastings Runners have just completed their first ever Walk 2 Run
Hastings Runners have just completed their first ever Walk 2 Run programme, with 15 beginner runners – many of whom had never run before – attending twice weekly training sessions at Sedlescombe Rangers FC’s playing fields over a 14 week period.
The initiative, supported by Sedlescombe Parish Council, has seen 5 of the group already run the Hastings parkrun 5 kms non-stop with Chris Fowler leading the way with an impressive time of 24 mins, followed by Andy Sansom (28 mins); Lisa Hawkins and Anne Porritt (31 mins), Janet Jones (33 mins). Other members are hoping to tackle the parkrun over the Christmas period.
The free sessions, organised by Hastings Runners club chairman Nick Brown, included a brisk warm up walk, warm up drills, run/walk intervals and a cool down/stretching routine to finish. Participants’ ages ranged from early 20s up to early 70s.
Nick says:”The group have done really well over the course of the programme, steadily building up their endurance each week, and have turned out in some horrendous weather! I would especially like to thank our band of regular helpers – Andy Knight, Claire Thomas, Helen Brown, Marie Crawford, Susan Rae and Will Withecombe – who have been a great motivation throughout!”
Maria Wells says: “At 65 I was one of the older participants in the recent Walk to Run sessions in Sedlescombe, and I can wholeheartedly recommend the process. Not being very “sporty”, my only experience of running was doing the NHS 0-5K app two years ago on my own. This was very different in many ways. Running outside with a bunch of cheerful people, receiving the unending, patient support of expert runners in an inclusive and non-judgemental manner being the biggest difference. With supportive encouragement and suggestions you can go at your own pace and end up surprising yourself by what you can achieve.”
Chris Fowler says: “As an older runner who had not run for a number of years, this was a perfect group to join. The group was friendly and encouraging, predominantly non runners full of enthusiasm trying to get fit. The team trying to get us all fit were amazing, and aving successfully reached 5K I’m now looking to try and increase my miles.”
A.S. says:”For anyone unsure as to how to get into running, returning from a long absence, or finding themselves drifting towards the dark side of the bathroom scales or bakery counter, Nicks Walk 2 Run course was a welcoming, gently structured and eminently achievable proposition. It’s not that hard, and in its very gradual progression lies its secret. No boot-camp histrionics, you walk a bit, then run a bit, and then walk a bit less and run a bit more. Repeatedly, and that really is it. Courtesy of Nick’s gentle persuasions and encouragements, behold yourself, after 14 weeks, the runner you knew you could be.”
Some of the group now plan to join the Hastings Runners, who’ve recently started new training sessions for beginner runners and those returning from injury led by coaches Sue Mann and Jo Edwards, meeting on Saturdays (9.30 am in Alexandra Park) and Wednesdays (18.30 pm at Horntye Park). The next Walk 2 Run programme will start in April 2023, again based at Sedlescombe on Monday and Friday mornings. Please email [email protected] if you are interested in taking part.