Do you remember the days when we used to sit in front of the TV waiting for the Morecambe and Wise show, or maybe Top of The Pops, to start? Nowadays we all seem to cluster around the TV waiting for the next depressing announcement from the Government! No news is good news when it comes to Covid.

IN response to the Government’s announcement on Saturday, the England Athletics website says:

‘England Athletics is working with Sport England, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport and our other key stakeholders to make sure we provide absolute clarity as soon as possible in terms of what the latest lockdown restrictions mean for athletics, running and our sport in general’.

In the meantime, based on the Government guidance on, I’ve posted the following message on our website and WhatsApp after the latest Government Covid announcement on Saturday:

‘The Government has announced new Covid-19 restrictions will come into force from 5 November (subject to Parliamentary approval). One of the restrictions is that indoor and outdoor leisure facilities, including sports facilities, must close. In addition, exercise outdoors, while permissible, will be restricted to people you live with, with your support bubble or, when on your own, with one person from another household.

‘With regret, we will therefore be stopping BRR Club activities, including track nights, Thursday night runs, and Sunday runs at Hainault, from 5 November. We hope that the restrictions will be lifted on 2 December. Please keep checking the latest BRR News for updates’.

It’s possible that it will be decided that our activities can go ahead, but I’m not confident. We have done our best to allow Club activities to go ahead safely and had planned to hold our own 3k and cross-country series to give us something to look forward too. If we are caught by the new restrictions, we can only hope that the ‘circuit-breaker has the desired effect and that our plans are delayed not cancelled. In the meantime, it was good to see so many of you taking part in real or virtual events over the past week – let’s keep our spirits up and keep on running.

BRR in the News

Apologies to Belinda Riches for failing to mention her excellent performance at the Beachy Head Half on 18th October. Belinda completed the gruelling course in 2:08:37.

Belinda was in action again on Thursday, alongside Martin Page and Trevor Robinson, at the Gravesend Floodlit races. Belinda completed the winding and undulating 10k course in 51:01 with Martin finishing just ahead in 42:59 and winning the MV60 category int the bargain. Trevor completed the 5k distance in 24:20.

Sally Bridge and Annette Prior both participated in the RunThrough Olympic Park 10k, finishing in 54:53 and 1:08:41 respectively. Trevor Parkin took part in the 5K, finishing in 50:33.

In the virtual world, Jason Li took the opportunity to complete the Vitality Virtual London 10,000 on the Kent coast, running from Herne Bay to the Reculver Towers and back. His time of 1:10:52 was impressive given that some of his chosen course was on the pebble beach – not the greatest running surface. James Hall and Nehal Patel chose to complete the virtual challenge slightly nearer to home, finishing in 58:12 and 58:15 respectively.

Track Tuesday

It was the timed mile at track on Tuesday, with excellent performances across the board. Of course, Captain Rob’s evil twin couldn’t let people rest at the mile, and added on 6 x 300m for good measure. We all needed John’s stretching session at the end to recover, though I’m still suffering from rising damp after sitting on the soggy track. Jason wasn’t there so there are no photos of the suffering. You’ll have to make do with a photo of the Wednesday morning runners instead.

This Tuesday’s session will be a timed pyramid session: 1min, 2mins, 4mins, 6mins, 8mins, 6mins, 4mins, 2mins, 1min, with a minute active recovery between each rep.

Those of you who suggested a beer/cocktail/burger mile for our last pre-lockdown session are all very naughty. And the less said about Nehal’s suggestion of 5×1 mile repeats the better.

Barking (Not)parkrun

Ron Vialls, Belinda, Natalie Traylen, Jason, Annette Prior and Alison were all in Barking (Not)parkrun (NPR) action this week, with Ron (23:16) and Alison (38:25) both achieving NPR Personal Bests. Look out for the various NPR challenges that are taken place during November for a little bit of extra motivation, if you need it.

Morning Stretches for Runners

A new month, and a new series of stretches, this time to get you moving in the morning. As runners, our muscles can tighten up overnight. Gentle stretching first thing in the morning will not only wake up those muscles and stimulate blood flow, it’ll also reset your posture, improve your flexibility, and increase your mobility.

The moves over the next six weeks can be performed individually or – better still – added together to form a ‘yin yoga flow’ to set you up for the day ahead. Just make sure you perform them slowly and smoothly – no rushed or sudden movements. The good news is, lots of them will be very familiar to those of you who have done Debbie’s HIIT sessions or John’s post-track stretching.

#01 – Neck Circle

We are always advised to ‘run tall,’ but neck pain can keep you from doing that because it can cause the shoulders to round forward and slump. Neck circles reduce tension and help to develop a better range of motion in the neck, promoting better posture while running.


How to do it: 

  • Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and hands on hips.
  • Gently roll the neck to the right and back until gaze is skyward, then to the left and down, until gaze is facing the floor.
  • Repeat eight times in one direction, then eight times in the opposite direction.
  • Don’t force your neck – all the movements should be gentle.

And finally…

I liked the look of this long-sleeved Adidas running top I saw on the StartFitness website this week: BRR orange; thumb holes to keep your hands warm; a handy zipped pocket in the sleeve to keep your valuables safe. What’s not to like? Then I saw the price… Why does it seem alright to spend a small fortune on a pair of running shoes, but not on a top?

Take care out there


BRR Chair


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