We have a wide range of adult running groups, of varying abilities who train and compete throughout the year. The main training sessions are Tuesday & Thursday evenings 6.30pm – 8.00pm, though many of our runners often arrange to meet up informally at other times during the week. Anyone is welcome to come down to the club and find out more about what we do, and how the training sessions work, before making any commitment to join.
However we understand that it may be a little daunting to think about joining a running club if you’re just starting, haven’t run for some time, or just aren’t sure whether you’ll be ‘good enough’ to join a club. If you are interested in running but maybe fit into one of these categories, why not get in touch and we can give you some help and guidance as to which group you could join in with for training. We really do have people of all ages and abilities so there’s no need to worry that there may not be a group you can fit in to, or that you may not be fast enough to keep up.
Our members are a friendly bunch, and you’ll not only benefit from improving your fitness levels but you’ll get support and encouragement from everyone around you.
As a guide on a typical Tuesday and Thursday night we might have the following groups for adults:
Pre-covid our adult groups would always meet on a Tuesday and Thursday at Aldersley Stadium and the reception area was a hive of running activity however a global pandemic has changed things a little and while Tuesday and Thursday are still the favoured days the venue may change from one week to the next and groups are made aware of what’s going on via social media.
The adult groups will cover a range of abilities and ambitions but can generally be summarised below, we have deliberated long and hard on what to call the groups, many names can be considered too serious or not serious enough and we are reluctant to call a group Arthur’s group or Martha’s group, as then it feels like a great responsibility for that person or members of the group may feel they belong to the leader rather than the group itself.
Anyway, here is a quick summary of what each group tends to do with the distinction between each group based on minute miling. There is no reason why people cannot move between groups, maybe an athlete is coming back from injury or just a prolonged break and doesn’t want to drop back in where they were, maybe someone has improved and finds they are comfortable at one level and feels like a challenge and wants to move to a quicker group, at least the options are there for an athlete to flex between groups and try something different depending on what suits them at the time. There is certainly no elitism within any group and no stigma attached to being a member of one group over another.
It must also be stated that all athletes within each group will have a duty of care to ensure that everyone is safe, no one gets left behind, and runners will be expected to regroup, double back and ensure that the group is not stretched out too far to make it unsafe or unsettling.
11 minutes plus group
We have a small group who state they are very much social runners who are there for a chat as much as for the running, many have children training with the club so will meet on a Tuesday and Thursday evening wherever the children’s group are training with Ross Jones, usually at Fordhouses Cricket Club but sometimes at Aldersley Stadium or other local spots. Most of the group can do a parkrun in 30 – 40 minutes and will always loop back and regroup so no one is left behind. They usually aim to run about 4 – 5 miles and try to include some kind of structured efforts on a Tuesday, plus the occasional pub run, chip shop or ice cream stop. They are a very supportive group and a first step for many.
10 – 11 minute mile group
Ideally for runners who are able to complete a parkrun in around 30 minutes, maybe a little quicker, possibly a little slower. Each run will be around 5 – 6 miles with regrouping to make sure the tail is not too long. This is a good starting point for those who have completed a couch to 5k course and feel they want to take their running that little bit further. We are attempting to forge greater links with Jolly Joggers who organise a couch to 5k group and this will potentially be a good starting point for those wishing to find their feet within the club.
7 – 9 minute mile group
This is usually organised by Simon Calrow and caters for those that are around the 20 – 27 minutes for a 5k. There are a few runners that will run off the front and come back and a handful towards the rear but are looking to improve. With a good balance of both competitive and social runners this is aimed at those who are running regularly and consistently both with the club on a Tuesday and a Thursday but also will be happy to train away from the club too.
5 – 7 minute mile group – distance group
This group is predominantly coached by Adam Guy, work permitting, and will be aimed at those who are that little bit quicker. Sessions can be on the road, around parks – Bantock and West Park – around the fields at Compton or on the track on a Tuesday and complemented with a more structured run, possibly a fartlek session or some mile pick ups within a longer run on a Thursday. Saturdays are back to efforts having had a few days to recover. These will either be on the track at Aldersley or over at Compton Park, West Park or Bantock Park. Adam’s sessions range from 3.5 miles to 5 miles of effort developing runners for 5k-half marathon. 1 to 1 programs are also available. There is a very big overlap between this group and the one above with the groups often joining forces and completing more structured sessions together.
5 – 7 minute mile – track group
There are some groups within a group here with the 800 and & 1500 runners coming under the coaching of a combination of Derrick Harding and Dave Guest, and those wanted to race over a longer distance being coached mainly by John Abbiss. This group has more of a focus on track racing throughout the summer, with the focus being on 1500, 3000 and 5000, but athletes tend to join one of the other groups throughout the winter when the focus is more of road relays, individual road racing and cross-country leagues. Sessions tend to be on the track on Tuesdays in summer with a tempo effort on a Thursday but tend to go out on the roads in the winter to ensure the sessions are event specific. In addition we also have Pete Stark and Darren Edwards who coach under 20s and help with their transition from Junior to Senior level.