GVS 2.6 Relay Challenge

26th April 2020

By Kirsty Pierce

It was a good day. No, it was a great day. Possibly one of the best during these series of Groundhog-like days when there is often nothing particular (no Tuesday night training, no Wednesday hill and speed sessions, no Saturday breakfast or Sunday evening group runs) to differentiate one day from the next. So I hope I speak for everyone when I say that when I woke this morning and knew I would be slipping on my running shoes at the same time, just before or just after my running pals, it felt almost like I was running alongside others. Something I hadn’t felt in a while.

So firstly, special thanks go to Brian Holland for sowing the seed of an idea and then putting it together. Thanks also to Pete Fotheringham for creating our entries page. From concept to concrete took only a matter of days; in the words of Paul Oakley “it shows how creative we all get when put to the test”.

And creativity certainly was a theme throughout the day with the variety of batons – from stuffed toys to artfully decorated toilet rolls, golden running shoes, a Trump themed toilet brush (fabulous), baton shaped vegetables, and we mustn’t forget the recycled broken wooden spoon from Anna Aspinall and smiling spatula thanks to Helen Gray. Oh and was that a banana baton being held aloft by the Grant family?

All in all, we had already proven the strength of our club creativity with the Goyt Valley Striders Christmas Tree in December but today we took that artistic flair to greater heights.

I feel the need for a “design your own baton” competition as part of the re-run of the Covid-19 2.6 Relay which I am certain Brian will be keen to put on the calendar next year! But next year, wouldn’t it be marvellous to actually hand the baton in person over to someone else?

Yes, it really was a good day. There isn’t a picture without smiling, happy faces. From the youngest Striders to the wiser members of our running community….we all had fun, running up hills, down hills, along towpaths, through fields, or even in the case of Louise Smith, 84 laps of the garden! And if we couldn’t run together in person, we certainly ran together in our heads and hearts.

Not only that but between us we managed to raise about £550 for our chosen charities – pretty good for a club of our size. And in these times when charities are receiving no donations from the big sporting events that run through the summer season, I am sure we all felt the importance of doing our bit for such worthwhile causes.

…and the numbers: 2.62 miles in 26.21 minutes 🙂

I know I won’t be alone in hoping that the worst of this lockdown will soon be behind us, and also in looking forward to some runs when we can once again share the beautiful scenery around the Goyt Valley with friends. Until then let’s stay safe and keep positive and we can be thankful that against the odds, we could still find a way of running together.

To finish, I’m going to steal the words of our excellent collage photographer, Jane Adlard: “I’ve felt really proud of our club today”. And so say all of us!

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This account is for the editor of the Strider. Currently that is Pete Fotheringham.

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