Howdie Road Runners,

How have you been liking the sunshine? Tuesday night at the H90 race was warm at 21 degrees and our Thursday evening run was even hotter at 27 degrees, but the John Clarke fell race topped it all at 30 degrees. Still, as a certain Mr. W. Shakespeare said, ‘summer’s lease hath all too short a date’ so I’m not going to complain. It’s just a matter of staying hydrated, wearing the right clothing, adjusting your level of exertion, and enjoying it while it lasts!

BRR Committee June Meeting

With thanks to Club Secretary Dee, here are the minutes of the June Committee meeting. The important thing to note is that we’ve decided that the racing calendar is already so congested that, rather than select a new race to replace the postponed Thames Chase 10k, the Valentines Park 5K ELVIS race on 25 September will double up as a Grand Prix race – two lots of competition points for one race, and you only have to run 5k rather than 10! 220613 – June 2022 BRR Committee Meeting minutes

Running in the News

Beth Potter moved from running to triathlon in 2017. This has seen her weekly running mileage reduce from 80-85 miles a week to around 30, but a 14:41 at Barrowford last April shows that she is still pretty nifty on her feet. Beth recently told Athletics Weekly about her typical training week:

Monday: easy aerobic day; (am) easy technique, aerobic swim with focus on recovery from the weekend; (pm) 1.5-2hr easy bike ride, followed immediately by a run (“a longer aerobic session just to get used to running straight off the bike”). Gym session in the evening: “At this time of year (spring) we’re lifting heavier weights, shorter reps and just introducing more plyometric stuff,” she explains.

Tuesday: (am) 90min VO2 session (pool) e.g., main set 1500m-2km worth of top end work, reps around 100-200m range, no more than 400m; easy spin (75-90min) in the middle of the day either on the turbo or outside; (evening) track session – only hard run session of the week currently – with a group based at Leeds Beckett University: “We do either 8km worth of effort on the track or we split it up with a bit of tempo, bit of track, bit of tempo, bit of track.”

Wednesday: aerobic day – long aerobic miles; (am) 5.5-6km swim (pool in winter, open water in summer); break, then 3-3.5hr of steady riding.

Thursday: key session day; (am) swim 1.5hr: “It’s a threshold day, so it’s a big block of thresholds in the pool broken into longer reps 300m/400m range off short recovery then straight out for an easy run 45-60min.”; (pm) VO2 session on the bike with something like 24min worth of effort and mixture of reps.

Friday: easy swim: “We call it ‘toys Friday’, we get all the toys out in the pool, a lot of upper body strength stuff, parachute, sponges, paddles and we have a 300m block broken into 50ms and 25ms for some really fast stuff.”; gym session and chill out rest of the day.

Saturday: (am) group ride with the Leeds cyclists, around 45min of effort within the ride but the whole ride is quite fast: “We brought it in at the start of the year and planned to do it for 2-3 months, but we’ve ended up keeping it in. It’s really helped with my riding this year. I’ve learned a lot … little habits that I’ve picked up that are good habits.”; (pm) 45min easy run.

Sunday: easy aerobic day like a Wednesday; (am) 2.5-3hr riding; (pm) 60min running.

Potter advises choosing quality over quantity, which certainly seems to have paid off for her. Just remember that she will have a whole support team, including physios, so she can manage more intensive training than we can. As she notes herself, it is supposed to be about enjoyment.

Poll Time

Thanks to everyone who took the time to vote in last week’s poll, which asked ‘if you are going for a new Personal Best, what time of day would you prefer the race to be?’. It seems that we are early-birds, with almost two-thirds of respondents saying they preferred to race in the morning. Or perhaps we just like having the rest of the day free to do other things.

BRR in Action

(with thanks to Greg ‘the Ace’ Adams)

Gary Harford took a break from his holiday in Cyprus to take part in the Olympic day 5k in Paphos, finishing in a time of 30:22.

ELVIS series round 2 at Raphael Park hosted by Havering ’90 joggers was well attended by Barking Road Runners with 27 participants on the day. First finishers male and female for BRR were Paul Withyman 31:39 and Debbie Coyle 33:46. Debbie finished 7th lady overall and 1st in her age category. Other notable performers were Martin Page 34:49 and Ron Vialls 47:18, who finished 2nd and 3rd in their respective age categories. 

BRR members Alison Fryatt, Paul Withyman, Mark New, and Les Jay took part in the John Clarke Memorial Fell Race, the only grade A fell race in London and Essex.

Colin Jones competed in the Harp 24 hour ultra run. After running 60 miles in 12 hours, the heavens opened and flooded the course as well as Colin’s tent and the race was stopped. Colin then went home only to find out the race restarted five hours later.

As well as running BRR members were busy in triathlons and Cycling.

Debbie Coyle, Sarah Friel, and Amanda Heslegrave took part in the Bridge Triathlon sprint distance with serial trophy winner Debbie finishing 1st lady and Amanda finishing 2nd in her category.

Clodagh O’callaghan and Tom Shorey took part in the British Heart Foundation London to Brighton Cycle ride.

At the Cholmondeley Castle triathlon Trevor Cooper finished 1st in his category at the Olympic distance and Cristina Cooper finished 3rd in her category in the half iron man distance.


BRR parkrunners

Barking Park – Steve Philcox 18:28 (first overall), Jagbir Bassi 20:30, Adrian Davison 22:41, Shuhel Khan 24:02, Mark New 24:55, Joyce Golder 25:03, Belinda Riches 25:31, Huseyin Dogan 26:02,  Jason Li 27:20, Rabea Begum 27:41, Martin Mason 29:23, Barry Culling 29:42, Sally Bridge 33:32, Julie Gillender 34:19, Clodagh O’callaghan 35:17, Kirsten Hiller 39:13, Dawn Blake 39:14, Nikki Cranmer 39:15, Micky Ball 42:03, Alan Murphy 50:56, Chris Anastasi 51:59.

Chelmsford Central – Vicki Groves 32:15.

Dunstable Downs – James Lowndes 21:24 and Melissa Lowndes 37:36.

HadleighAntony Leckerman 24:43.

Hilly Fields – Joe Stacey 19:41.

Mote Park – Rory Burr 26:13.

Poole – Kevin Wotton 27.01.

BRR Diary

Download the TeamUp app onto your phone, then enter the calendar key for Barking Road Runners when asked: ks67p21gt8p5gzdo66 to see all of BRR’s agreed fixtures for the year.


7.30pm, Tuesday 21 June – East End Road Runners’ Mid-Summer 5k (ELVIS 03). Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, near the Velodrome. We have a great team o 21 runners signed up – let’s hope we can all get there. NOTE: they won’t be providing water bottles but there will be a water fountain. Please bring your own bottle to fill up.

10.00am, Sunday 26 June – Cross Country #05. Hadleigh Park, Chapel Lane, Hadleigh, Benfleet SS7 2PP. Last race in this year’s competition. Distance 6.8 km / 4.25 miles. Entry is £5 but the Club will subsidise £2 of the cost so you pay £3 on the day, to Dennis or Alison. Route to be marked with signs/arrows at main turn points and junctions, and small red flag markers every 200m along straight sections. Red/White tape to mark any low hanging branches or fence posts with risk of minor personal injury (gulp).

Sorry, no refreshments provided but there is the café on site, and maybe some of us will bring cakes like last time. Trophies for the day and for the whole competition to be awarded at 11:45 – 12:00 as soon as the results are collated. We definitely have the Division Two Winners Trophy to collect, and – who knows – may get a trophy or two on the day too, so please come along, and please stay for the presentation if you can. For the last time this series: DON’T FORGET YOUR B!!!

7.00pm, Tuesday 28 June – Speed development at Jim Peters Stadium. Last Tuesday of the month, but we might do something other than the usual timed mile, as we will have been away from track for so long. Shout now if you really want the mile.

7.00pm, Thursday 30 June – Summer Handicap 04. Barking Park.

9.15am, Sunday 3 July – GP05: Ware 10. GlaxoSmithKline Cricket Ground, Park Road, Ware, SG12 0DP. A new race for BRR. The race is being held in support of Essex and Herts Air Ambulance. There is also a kids’ fun run. Entry is £21.20 for EA registered or £23.22 for non-registered athletes. Make sure you sign up for the 10 miler NOT the 10K if you want to earn GP points! Enter at:–HANNcCxiDM

The Great Pacing Controversy

I reported on WhatsApp that there had been a complaint about pacing at the Havering ’90 Joggers Midweek 5 ELVIS (East London fiVes Interclub Series) race last week, where the second-placed woman – Morgan – was paced by a non-registered runner who dropped out just before the finish line. An investigation into the incident has been overseen by Martin Clarke, the series organiser. I thought you would like to see – and note – the final outcome in full. For a supportive Club like BRR, I think the final paragraph might be most relevant:

“From our collective findings I am satisfied that there was no pre
conceived plan or intent to pace although it was unwise for Gemma,
Morgan’s, training partner, to participate in the race without a
number. I also believe that no real advantage was gained and the
result was the same as it would have been had Gemma been absent from
the race. I think this was simply a case of both ladies not realising
that their actions might cause a problem.

“Given the circumstances and in the spirit of ELVIS I don’t wish to
take too hard a line on Morgan and considering both ladies have now
apologised I have decided not to void Morgan’s result in ELVIS and
her 2nd place still stands.

“Although the runners concerned do not belong to an ELVIS Club may I
ask club reps and organisers to ensure their members are aware of both
the rules and spirit of ELVIS moving forward.  As I said in my
previous email it is quite acceptable for officials to request that
anyone running without a number immediately leave the course
regardless of whether or not pacing is suspected.

“For further clarity it has been brought to my attention that sometimes
club runners will return after finishing to help out slower runners at
the rear of the field. They may or may not still be displaying numbers
and are also sometimes joined by non-participants. In such cases this
is perfectly acceptable as it is not classified as pacing and is
simply encouraging slower runners at the rear of the field to finish
and, if anything, exemplifies rather than contravenes the spirit of the
series. It is also seldom likely that this has any tangible effect on
the results”.

Cracker Corner

(With thanks to Les and Ron – maybe…)

We’re thinking of doing some building work so I went to the council offices and asked if I could have a skip outside my house. The man said ‘Of course you can, you fat cow, it looks like you need it!’

Talking of which, I was getting dressed the other day and said to Chris ‘look, I’ve had this for 10 years and it still fits me’. He replied “Yes, but it is a scarf.”

I walked into the kitchen this morning, walked into the kitchen and stepped on a cornflake. I’m now classified as a cereal killer.

Boom! Boom!

And finally…

After the discussions about the St. James’s Park pelicans the other week, I thought I’d take a walk down to the park during my lunchbreak and see how they were doing. You’ll be pleased to see they are doing well. I’m not sure which is the one from Southend. How can you tell if a pelican is from Southend or not? Answers on a postcard please…

Happy Running




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