Ambassador Blog – Rebecca

March started off so well with the Whitley Bay Junior Parkrun with my two boys, a couple of great gym workouts and a session with the Poly down on the promenade. I’d volunteered to pace at Whitley Bay Parkrun for International Women’s Day as a pacer – I’d never done this before so I played it safe and opted for 31 minutes as this is slower than my normal pace. It was great to see all of the pacers in their bibs and a fellow Monkey runner opted to try and keep pace with me as she hadn’t ran a 5k inside 35 minutes this year – no pressure! I finished in 31 min 26 secs which I didn’t think was too bad at my first attempt and my fellow Monkey runner was on my shoulder the whole way round, it was so lovely helping another runner!

The next day was my Sunday long run, training for the Northumberland half. Me and a friend have been increasing our miles since January in preparation and we ran 12 miles. We finished just in time to make Whitley Bay Junior Parkrun with our boys. I followed this with a special Hotpod Yoga session for runners  -I’m a fan of Hotpod Yoga anyway but this session was just for Monkey Runners.  I’ve never laughed so much in a yoga class before as some of the people in the group tried to get into the different positions.

A couple of days later it the NOTAN (North of Tyne Athletics Network) Winter Grand Prix – a series of timed training sessions based upon a handicap system amended after each session. My handicap has increased as I’ve got faster and this is race number 7.  Although I really enjoy the Grand Prix I have to psyche myself up for it as I struggle with the thought of being overtaken by all of the faster runners towards the end. This one went really well and was one of my  best performances.

It was lovely to take it easy at Parkrun the following Saturday (saving my legs!)  and without trying we managed negative splits. Sunday 15th March was the Northumberland Half – I felt fully prepared and was determined to beat my time of 2hrs 45mins from the GNR. It was cold at the start and it rained a little but I knew I would warm up once we started running. A group of 4 of us ran together and we were running faster than in our training sessions but it felt good. The race started in Ovingham, going out and then coming back through Ovingham then onto Wylam before crossing the River Tyne and turning back to finish at Prudhoe. I finished in 2hrs 18mins!! All of my hard work and Sunday long runs had been worth it.

I managed one more gym session before the lockdown started and the schools closed & then I fell ill with cold/flu symptoms so that floored me for a week! Obviously life is very different now, I’ve only been out for a couple runs since feeling better but I’ve been for lots of walks and me and they boys have been exercising with Joe Wicks every morning.

March – 50 miles running, 18 miles walking and a  half marathon PB. Hoping to find some motivation to get running again in April!



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