First events taking place

With the current restrictions due to the Corona Virus outbreak this year’s Chulmleigh Old Fair couldn’t go ahead in its usual format.  The fair is believed to be the longest running Charter Fair in England with 767 years without a break, including through 2 world wars so, determined to not break its continuity, it did go ahead in a reduced format. Included in this was the road race which became a virtual one with runners able to run the usual race route any time between last Tuesday and Friday. They recorded their times on the running Apps Strava or Garmin and sent them in to be assessed. Having won the race last year, Hayden Bond wanted to try and retain the trophy even if it was a virtual race, though running alone is very different to competing in a race with other runners. Karen King also ran this year and both ORCs did very well, Hayden completing the 2 mile course in 12min14sec to set a virtual course record and retain the Cup, while Karen’s time of 20.13 was enough to secure the first Ladies place.

On Sunday Karen was the first Okehampton runner to take part in a race held under restrictions due to the Corona Virus, running the Winding Paths 10k in the woodland of Grammarcombe woods near Ashcombe. It was a two lap race with challenging ground in places and a steep uphill at the end of both laps which Karen completed in 1.08.50 to claim her first trail race medal.

The last Lockdown ORC challenge

With further easing of Lockdown restrictions Okehampton Running Club held what it hopes will be its last weekend challenge. England Athletics has updated its guidance for running clubs to restart some club sessions with precautions in place for the safety of runners and the general public and while numbers of runners will be restricted, the club hopes that there won’t be the need for these virtual club challenges. This last challenge was to test runners fitness coming out of lockdown by running a 5k to see if they have improved during this period.

Some club members have actually taken advantage of having more time to run whilst on furlough while others have struggled with continuing to work, possibly from home, and having children at home too giving them less time to get out and run. Others found it difficult to stay motivated without the regular club sessions or the company of friends in the early days and enjoyed the virtual support of others during the challenges.

Amazingly the club has actually had several new members join despite lockdown, enjoying the opportunity to familiarise themselves with present members through the Facebook posts and feeling part of the club with the challenges.

It turned out not to be the best weather for running fast times with some torrential rain and hot humid periods in between, but this didn’t stop people having a go at the challenge. There was a broad spectrum of routes, downhill, flat, or quite hilly, but it didn’t really matter, with the taking part more important than the result.  Having said that, there were some great times recorded with unofficial PB’s from Robert Richards, Ian Ripper, Charlotte Lynch and Jodie Monnox, while new members Adam Bussell and Jules  Lewis-Thompson did their first recorded 5k’s so now have a time to beat in future. It was also the first timed 5k run on tarmac for off-road runner Joe Lane who found it harder than expected and has a new respect for the road runners now. For Duncan Nicol it was the first land-based challenge he has been able to take part in, having joined in the previous ones while onboard a cargo ship in the Pacific. New member Eirin Mc Daid was one of the runners to get a drenching when he did his 5k round Burrator Reservoir, but he still knocked 5secs off his previous best round that route.

Above all, this was about people getting out there and enjoying taking part, no matter what the result. These challenges have certainly inspired ORCs to keep going while the club was unable to operate during the worst of this pandemic. Hopefully we will really get back to normal sometime, running together as before, but for now there is the prospect of a nearer normal experience when limited sessions start again. As before, a big thank you to Robert Richards for coming up with the ideas and getting people motivated.

Thanks to Jane for the reporting.

I am proud because…

Another Okehampton Running Club Challenge rolled round last weekend, this time with the theme of “Pride”as its inspiration. These challenges have played an enormous part in keeping the club members together and helping to retain the feeling that they are all still part of a club, not just individual runners despite the restrictions of the Covid Pandemic. This became evident by the fact that overwhelmingly most people did runs saying that they were proud to wear the club colours and proud to be a member of such an inspiring and supportive club.

One member, Nicola Leach was proud on this occasion though to wear an NHS rainbow vest for her run with Lora Medland, having bought it to wear at the Edinburgh Half Marathon, but been denied the chance. As a trainee nurse she had every reason to be proud of being part of the NHS through these times.


Robert Richards also dedicated his run to the key workers in the club and beyond by doing a route linking sights where they have been working throughout lockdown such as the police and fire stations, the hospital and the supermarkets.

 

Some were deservedly proud of themselves, and others of them. At the age of 70 Janet White’s return to running since breaking her ankle on a moor run last year has proved difficult, especially through lockdown, but this weekend she did two runs. The first was with two club mates on the Tarka Trail, running a mile and a half further than she has been with the reward of tea and cake at the end of it. The second was a short moor run with two other friends, giving her the confidence to get back out on the moors she so loves. All her co-runners were proud to be running with this inspiring lady.

Debs Crome celebrated her wedding Anniversary by doing a 6mile walk on Dartmoor, proudly wearing her ORC vest and reflecting on all the places she’s become familiar with through running with friends on the moors. Her husband surprised her with a bottle of home brew to mark the day while siting in the sun on Belstone Tor.

The person who has the most reason to feel proud is Andy Vallance. It was his idea to set up a running club in Okehampton and his run was the route he did when he first started running in 1998 in order to take part in the London Marathon. Without him taking up running ORC would never have happened, but the club has grown way beyond what he ever envisaged, changing and enriching people’s lives through making friendships that go beyond just running together, and by the fitness and confidence it has given members. People have met new partners and many have found a new passion for being outdoors and exercise, for running on the moors or for racing competitively. The club developed with an ethos of being inclusive, supportive and equal, where everyone’s achievements were acknowledged on whatever level, a club that all members are proud to be part of.

Thank you Jane for preparing the report.

Quarterly Acheivement Award

Despite not being able to run as a club for some time, some of Okehampton Running Club’s business is carrying on as usual. Included in this was the presentation of the ORC Cup, a quarterly trophy awarded to a member for outstanding effort and achievement in the previous three months. On Thursday Mags Jarvis presented Joseph Lynch with the cup in recognition of his enthusiastic participation in the ORC challenges that have taken place fortnightly since lockdown. Joseph, who has Downes Syndrome, together with his mum Charlotte and Mags made up the Step By Step team for the Half Marathon Challenge, with Joseph coming up with the team name and organising the distances each would run. He also took it upon himself to start up an online fundraising page to raise £100 for Parkinsons UK aware that Mags, who has Parkinson’s, wasn’t going to be able to raise money for them with the London Marathon being cancelled. In a very short time he exceeded his target, eventually raising £655. Joseph was very proud and pleased to win the cup, already engraved with his name.

Special event weekend

Okehampton Running Club’s fortnightly Challenge this weekend was to complete a run that was “special”. This could be a route that is special, running with someone special or anything that makes it a special run. As always social distancing had to be maintained between runners and a picture posted on the club’s Facebook page as evidence of the run.

For many the special thing about their runs was the company they shared it with and about the support and encouragement they gave.  Paul Evison ran with his daughter Karen and grandson, Karen having been the one to encourage Paul to take up running. Hannah Ramsey and Debs Crome enjoyed each others company for the first time since March with a wild, wet and windy run on the moors. Claire Sprague, Jackie Dawes, Jessica Corcoran, Sarah Bell and Katie Sherjan met up for an early run in Fingle Woods on Saturday morning enjoying a post run picnic breakfast together after.

Once again this was open to ex-members, some of whom have rejoined the club having enjoyed the support of club members through Lockdown. Cathy Carey was one such ex-member, who had lost the love of running slightly, but through these challenges and the company of others, both virtual and real, has embraced running once more, rejoining the club. Her special run with friends saw her hit her target of running 200k in a month for the first time.

Two of ORC’s senior members Jane Richardson and Jane Jackson shared their first runs with a fellow ORC since Lockdown. Jane Richardson had self isolated completely until 2 weeks ago doing all her running round her garden and wearing a deep groove in the ground in the process. She’s entered virtual races to keep her motivated and in March she decided to take up the Run Every Day Challenge. Sunday saw her 99th day of the challenge, just one day off her 100 day target, most of which was completed in the limited space of laps of her garden and having run over 200miles in the process. Jane is a true inspiration to all in the club.

When it came to special routes these varied from Christine Fritsch running the route of one of her favourite races, the Haytor Heller to Jodie Monnox and Gemma Lawson running on the Granite Way, where they completed their first 5k time trial after “graduating” from the Couch to 5k course. Anne and John Binns went to their local Parkrun course, the Tamar Lakes as like many other members they are missing their weekly Parkruns. Lucy Brint took to Simmons Park to run the route of the monthly Run in the Park which was her first run after finding she’d got a London Marathon place and Danniella Tansley returned to where she first wore a race bib and where she did her first Parkrun at Exeter Riverside.

For Karen King Lockdown has been tough as a key worker and coping with a family. Despite living in Okehampton for several years Karen had hardly ever been onto the moors until recently when she started going for walks up there with fellow ORC Jo Page and has grown to love Dartmoor, enjoying the time to escape all the stresses of lockdown. Fittingly her special run was on the moors with Jo and Hayden Bond.

Katy Graves and Carole Cornwall made their run special by dedicating it to their friend Kath Bolt who has passed away. They had all started running with the Women’s Running Network, long before ORC existed, all doing their coaching course together and will always have Kath in their hearts.

Two runners, Stuart Page and Robert Richards celebrated their birthdays at the weekend so their runs were on a special day.

Paul Crease has for some time been on a mission to “bag” every Tor on Dartmoor on his runs. This has led to some convoluted run routes, often with barely a path to follow and many hours out running on the remote areas of the moors. Sunday was indeed a special run for him as he finally completed his mission, having bagged 415 Tors, 55 Hills, covering 615 miles with 100,487ft ascent over 52 runs. That definitely qualifies as a special achievement.

Once again thanks to Robert Richards for setting the challenge and collating the results.

The “BIG” challenge event

Another running challenge was set for Okehampton Running Club members to tackle last weekend. This time it was just a one word challenge – BIG, leaving the members to put their own interpretation on it. Luckily, despite a bad forecast both days turned out to be pretty good weather conditions for running and many headed out to the moors to make their runs BIG on elevation.

 

High Willhays was the most popular spot, being the highest point in the south of England and with a total of 12 ORCs choosing to run up this big hill, some taking in Yes Tor too. Robert Richards didn’t visit High Willhays, as three times up and down Yes Tor from different directions was sufficient for his BIG run with an elevation of over 1,000m. With the easing of lockdown guidelines it was now possible for groups of up to 6 people to run together while maintaining a social distance so a group of 5 visited these two high points early Saturday morning when the run was best described as windy, foggy and boggy – Dartmoor at its best!

Just running on the moors was a BIG challenge for some of the confirmed road runners in the club, so moor runner Ali Holiday guided a group out to one of her favourite high places on the moors, Hangingstone Hill.

Joe Lane enjoyed a misty run early on Saturday when he based his route on the letters B.I.G being the first letter of places visited. These were Belstone Tor, Ivy Tor and much further away, Garteven Ford, though the inclusion of this was probably just an excuse for a long run on the moors!

There were some inspiring runs from members who used the challenge to take on runs of a bigger distance than they’d ever done. Gemma Lawson and Jodie Monnox were completely new to running when they took part in the club’s Couch to 5k course and gradually they have increased the distance of their runs until this weekend when they both did their BIGGEST runs ever, completing a half marathon.

Robert Kelly took the biggest run theme to another level. Having had his favourite race, the 32mile Dartmoor Discovery, cancelled this year, and having just turned 40 he decided to do a 40 mile run, his BIGGEST run ever. Running repeated out and back loops on the Granite Way, he stopped only to take on board food and talk to his family who had come out to support him. 

BIG became a relative word for runners coming back from injury. One of the club’s most senior runners, Janet White, broke her ankle last year while running on the moors. The timing was bad with first Christmas, then bad weather and finally Lockdown making it hard for her to get back into some sort of running routine. Recently she started a return to running program so 5 times 4minute runs was a Big mark in her comeback and the club members look forward to seeing her out on the moors once more. BIG was also relative for ORC’s most senior runner, Jane Richardson who has spent the last 12weeks in complete lockdown, only running round her garden, so a 3k run certainly felt BIG.

There were several attempts at “Strava art” by members to “write” the words BIG with their route showing on their Strava running app. Ricky Davies’ was the best of these, with a well planned and very readable BIG-on-a-stick!

Sunday saw some very BIG runs too. Jo Page and Jo Turner had a lovely morning running the Dartmoor 600’s, a 19 mile self chosen route covering all of Dartmoor’s peaks over 600m.

The word BIG didn’t really begin to describe the run taken on by three ORCs and a friend who followed the route of the Dartmoor Perambulation. This is an ancient route dating back to 1240 when King Henry III decreed that the Sheriff of Devon and 12 lawful knights of the country” should confirm the boundary of the Forest of Dartmoor. 780 years ago this was completed on horseback, and the runner’s route visited all the points listed in the original boundary perambulation, resulting in a run of 48miles across rough terrain with an ascent of over 2,200m.

Five ORC ladies made up a virtual relay team over the weekend, taking part in the V55 category of the Eikden Relays, a virtual race with the runners total distance covering a full marathon, 42k. With a few last-minute reshuffles of the team due to injury and one team member thinking she was older than she was, Claudine Benstead ran two legs and Michelle Luddington stepped in to take the other vacant leg. They, together with Mags Jarvis, Jaqueline Rice and Jane Jackson were pleased to find their team had come third.

Freestyle weekend

Scorching hot temperatures made for some uncomfortable running for Okehampton Running Club members taking on another of the Lockdown Challenges at the weekend. This time the challenge was a “freestyle” one, where members were encouraged to go out and challenge themselves in any way they wished, be it running in a new place, a longer distance than normal, a faster time or even just getting out there and doing a run when without the virtual support of other club members they may have taken the easy option, particularly in such hot weather and not gone out at all.

The rules were the same as before, to do a run and post a photo of themselves in ORC kit along with evidence of the time and distance on the club’s Facebook page. All runs had to be done at a social distance if running with someone from another household.

Among the first to log their runs on Saturday morning were Hannah Woods and Geraldine Walter with a run on the Pegasus Way, while Ali Holiday and Cathy Carey took to the Ring Road on the moors. Cam Whitelaw doesn’t like running in the heat at all but he had challenged himself to run as many miles as he could. With an early start he achieved an impressive 18.6 miles, much longer than his usual runs and what turned out to be the longest distance of the challenge. Also out early to beat the heat was Robert Richards, making sure he got a run on the moors before collating all the other runs as they came in and enjoying a cooling dip in the river at the end of it.

As the day wore on some runners defied the heat to put in some good efforts, but Joe Lane chose the cooler conditions of other end of the day with a sunset run over Sourton Tors.

Knowing that Sunday was going to be another scorcher, there were some very early risers the next day, first of whom was Andy Vallance who started his run from the Dartmoor Inn at Lydford at 5.50 am. He ran the Dartmoor 600’s Challenge, running all the 5 Dartmoor Peaks over 600m high. Andy has completed this before but with the exceptionally dry conditions on the moor he managed to achieve his fastest time and reduce the usual 18miles to 17m by taking very direct lines between the peaks.

Jo and Phil Turner set their alarm for 5.00am to drive to Burrator Reservoir and run from there out to Princetown and back – a half marathon distance before it got hot or crowded.

Some, like Mags Jarvis set out to do a shortish run but ended up going further, 10 miles further in her case, while a few including Jaqueline Rice, wished they hadn’t challenged themselves quite so much on such a hot day but nevertheless completed what they’d set out to do though perhaps a little more slowly.

Just a week ago Chris Fullford-Brown was asking for someone to run with as he was lacking fitness and motivation but could only manage about 5-6miles. There was a terrific response from members saying they could accompany him and Sunday saw him join forces with Jessica Corcoran and Claire Sprague to each run nine miles.

The uptake was right across the board with ex-members taking part, some very new members including Jules Lewis-Tompson and two who will be joining the club as as soon as they have moved to Okehampton this week.

The camaraderie of fellow club mates continues to inspire members to enjoy their running even in these difficult times. Thanks as always to Rob Richards for setting it up and collating the results. In the end 81 runners took part running a total of 600 miles.

With no races being held anywhere at the moment, many runners have taken to entering virtual races, where they run set distances, sending in proof of their times from running apps such as Strava and are then given their results and placings online.The Run Exe series has transferred to these virtual races and this week there were some great results by ORCs. Super-fast Lady Vet60 Claudine Benstead was among the prizewinners with a time of 20.59 for her 5k, giving her an Age Graded percentage of 91%. Jane Richardson, an FV70, was also a prizewinner for her runs which are all done in her garden, having not left her home since the beginning of March. Mags Jarvis also got a special mention for her 5k that gave her an 80% Age Graded result.

Individual Event Challenge

Another weekend of good weather provided ideal running conditions for Okehampton Running Club’s Weekend Challenge for its members and ex-members. The task set for them this time was to just pick an acknowledged race distance and complete a run of that distance wearing club colours and posting their results to ORC’s Facebook page. There was no pressure to actually run it as a race, but it was just to remind runners that despite the lockdown they still could run a race when we finally emerge from this way of life. Some members met the challenge head on, completing a distance they had never done before or hadn’t run for a long time and some pushed themselves to run a virtual Personal Best for their chosen distance.

The distances chosen varied from a 100m sprint by Graham Bryant, to a full marathon, run by marathon specialist Roger Voaden, still a member despite moving away from Okehampton.

The relaxed feeling of choosing your distance and where to run it produced some great results. Jodie Monnox joined the club last October, coming through the couch to 5k course, and was the first runner to log in on Saturday morning. Her description of her run was that she’d decided not to push herself and enjoy her run, and then produced a huge 10k PB.

With some easing of the lockdown restrictions, some members could now get back to running on Dartmoor, a privilege that has only been available to members who lived near enough to run there from their homes. Dartmoor running specialist Christine Fritsch, along with several other “off roaders” took to the moors for their runs, once again enjoying the freedom of the wide open spaces and clocking up some good half marathons in the process.

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Another change in the previous regulations meant that people could run with someone else as long as they maintained the 2 meter social distance throughout. Long-time  member Beki Simmons has never raced much but with the encouragement of running buddy Jo Burrow she pushed herself to run her first 10miler in over 5 years.

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Nicola Leach has only got back to running in the last few months having been concentrating on her nursing training, but despite her long hours recently she completed her first half marathon in 2 years.

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Perhaps the toughest 10k was run by Ricky Davies, starting from his house in the town and running all the way to the top of Yes Tor and High Willhays, a continuous climb of 1,669ft.

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One of the club’s own races, Marilyn’s Meldon Madness should have been held on Saturday so a few runners chose that route for the challenge. Both last year’s first lady, Katie Littlejohns and Joe Lane ran it from home and back, Joe’s route turning the 5mile race into a half marathon.

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Perhaps one of the most poignant runs was from ex-member Claire Stanbury. Saturday should have been her Wedding Day so Claire took her mind off it by running a 10miler challenge, clocking a new PB for the distance wearing her veil.

 

Just one junior took part this time, Stan Wood who clocked 5min45sec for his 1500m run, a distance he’s trying to improve his time on.

 

Again, the challenge brought the feeling of being a club back and inspired the members to get out and run. A total of 96 runners took part, running a total of 697 miles, including 30x 5k’s, 32x 10k’s, 22x 10milers, 12 half marathons and one full marathon. As ever thanks goes to Robert Richards for setting, organising and logging the challenge. Okehampton’s ideas are now being taken up by other clubs to keep their members engaged through this period that is understandably devoid of races and club runs.

Friends and Family Half Marathon Challenge

With no sign of lockdown coming to an end anytime soon, once again Okehampton Running Club members rose to another challenge set to them. Head coach Rob Richards and Ruth Bushell came up with a format for this challenge to help the members who have struggled with having to run on their own in lockdown by making it a team challenge, even if the team members couldn’t actually be together. It was also designed to be more inclusive, encouraging the members to reach out to family and friends to be part of their teams whether they were runners or not as walking was also allowed. The teams were to complete a cumulative half marathon over the course of the weekend, with husbands, wives, small children, parents and friends all taking part. This extended to friends and family in other parts of the country and even other parts of the world all doing some miles to put towards the team result. All that was required was for evidence of the distance completed along with a photo of either ORC kit being worn or for non members to print off the ORC logo and pin it to their T shirt and for the team leader to log the team results on the ORC Facebook page. After the enormous success of ORC’s previous challenge it was hard to imagine the response could be any better, but it was staggering.

 

With great imagination teams put their own twists on the challenge. One of Okehampton’s popular members is Joseph Lynch who has Downes Syndrome. He took charge of the Step By Step team comprising himself, his mother and Mags Jarvis. Completely off his own initiative he decided to use this as a fundraising opportunity, setting up an online page for people to donate to Parkinsons UK as his fellow team member Mags has this disease. Originally aiming to raise £100 its total is already £465.

 

Some of the faster runners decided that between eight of them a half marathon was too easy, so divided the distance up equally with the aim of running the maximum elevation. Each one of The Only Way Is Up team ran just 1.64 miles but their total elevation gain was an incredible 9,555ft involving many repetitions up and down the steepest bits of hill near their homes or even up and down steps!

 

Again past members were included in the challenge and responded with a virtual relay of 13 runners all completing just one mile and making a brilliant video of the virtual changeovers with a bottle of wine as the baton to be passed on to the last runner who had supposedly run out of wine in lockdown!

 

One group of ladies synchronised their runs so that a runner in the Bahamas ran at the same time as two in the UK and one in Dubai. Another team was comprised of runners in South Africa and Australia together with local runners, while Duncan Nicol who took part in the previous challenge aboard a cargo ship anchored off China, now persuaded his fellow crew members to join him, running on a treadmill, this time making their way across the Pacific Ocean towards the USA.

Okehampton member Debs Crome certainly took the opportunity to reach out o friends and family across the country and brought together a team of 30 all of whom ran or walked a minimum of 1km but most did a lot more. With the help of 29 non members, Debs being the only ORC amongst them, they amassed a total mileage of 177miles, equal to over 13.5 half marathons or 6.5 full marathons and by far the biggest collective mileage.

 

One relatively new member, Jodie Monnox got together a team of 23, including some Okehampton Golf Club members, calling it Complete and Putter Madness. With a lot of key workers in the team it provided a great distraction from their work over the weekend.

As with the previous ORC challenge 2 weeks ago it was the feeling of being part of a team and part of a club again that was the reward for all who took part. Along with many other less happy memories of this strange time we are living in, there will at least be memories of the moments of shared fun this brought and pride in the achievements of young and old, fit and not so fit who all put some effort into completing the challenge. Once again a massive thanks to Robert Richards who organised it and spent the weekend collating and recording the results, even managing to squeeze in a run himself.

The final totals were; Teams; 43,  Total distance covered; 1169.4m, Number of people who took part; 224 of which 87 were members. We all await the next challenge.

 

 

Physical and Mental Well-being event

In these uncertain times ORC members have found it hard to have the motivation to keep running and training with no definite light at the end of the lockdown tunnel. Many members have done fundraising runs for the NHS but most are still finding their “mojo” is lacking. Those members who use club sessions to train to race were lacking incentive with all races postponed or cancelled. Those who use it as a form of exercise, enjoying the social element of belonging to a club and running with others were missing their running buddies and are struggling to have the motivation to run on their own. The physical and mental benefits of running are well known and with NHS workers and key workers among the club’s membership it was felt that they too needed to have an opportunity to take their minds off the stresses that they are facing.

It was with this in mind that head coach Robert Richards decided to boost the morale of members by setting a challenge for both past and present members, to collectively run a cumulative total of 1,000k between them on Saturday. Observing the lockdown guidelines, everyone was to run from home, keeping to the social distancing rules and only in the company of those in the same household. They had to wear some item of club clothing and take a photo of themselves, logging the distance run along with their photo either on the club’s Facebook page or the Strava running app that many use.

The response was overwhelming! From early Saturday morning to the late afternoon runners were uploading their runs and pictures. The distances varied according to what people could manage from a couple of miles to a full marathon distance. The ORC juniors were great contributors, running with their parents, 23 of them clocked up a total of 114k. The youngest participant was 15 month old Olivia wearing an ORC bandanna while being pushed in a buggy by her father Gaz Williams for over 6miles. Nine past members, including one who had moved up to Scotland, dug out their old ORC vests and ran a total of 82k, enjoying being back as part of the club.

The most remote ORC runner was Duncan Nicol, chief engineer on a merchant ship anchored off the coast of China who ran 4miles around the deck of the Maersk Altair, sporting a face mask with the ORC logo on it. Martin Trerise ran an incredible 26k by running round the perimeter of every field of his family farm.

What was most obvious though was that the runners all enjoyed their runs far more than the ones they’ve been forced to do since the lockdown. They had a goal to achieve, they didn’t feel like they were running alone, and with this came the incentive to push themselves a little bit harder, some running alone for the first time, having not run at all since the club had to close down. One of our most senior members, Jane Richardson, has been in total isolation for three weeks now and has only been able to run round her garden where she has worn a path in the grass. She enjoyed the feeling that for once she wasn’t doing this entirely on her own. The last runner to contribute was club chairman Jeremy Tandy who completed a full marathon distance while never being over a mile away from his home.

When all the maths were done it revealed 125 members, the biggest turnout of club members ever, had run a total of an impressive 1,368k or 850 miles. This incredible distance means that done in a relay the ORCs could have run from Okehampton to John O’Groats and some way back, though perhaps not in a day!

It was inspiring and rewarding to watch this all taking place throughout the day and those who took part, no matter how fast or what distance, had all come together as a club once more to contribute their bit to a club goal. Huge thanks to Robert Richards who organised and collated it throughout the day and inspired us all to get out there and run.

Who we do finally get through this dark period and can return to club sessions, the club would welcome any new members who may have used this opportunity to start running and would like to continue within the club. In the meantime if anyone wants running ideas who are not in the club they can email coaching@okehamptonrunningclub.com for some help.