Ross Bennett
Club Chair

Chair Update

We are now well into what I now call May Madness. Why May Madness? Well I for one will be competing in 4 events in May over a variety of distances that will surely test knees.

Last weekend saw many of Mickleover Running Club take part in the Great Northern 10k and Half Marathon races. Cheered on by the very vocal and enthusiastic MRC cheerleaders, pom-poms are on order, all of those who ran put in an amazing effort on what is a pretty challenging course with and there were few PBs thrown in for good measure. I for one defiantly found that I had an extra spring in my step from the massive support that the club provided as I went past to start my second lap of the half marathon.

With only 6 days rest from the exploits of the Great Northern, myself and many others from Mikcleover Running Club are getting our racing shoes on yet again to race the Sinfin 10k. This great event represents the first race in the Derby Run Series and the second race of the Mickleover Running Club race series. This race promises to be another great event with Mickleover running club fielding another great team and I suspect the cheering will be just as load.

The Sunday following the Sinfin 10k sees the Carsington 7+, and my third race in two weeks. This race around Carsington Reservoir is the second race in the Derby Run series. If you would like to take part and witness first hand my knees catastrophically failing 3 miles from home, there is still time to enter for this great event.

Assuming that my knees haven’t exploded and taken out half the Carsington field, I shall then be endeavoring to run as hard as I can in the first race of the Derby 5k series. This series is held at Darley Park and takes place on the last Tuesday of May, June, July and August. If you are interested in taking part you can still enter this event, or enter on the day. You can find entry details for both the Carsington and Derby 5k series, as well as other events throughout the year, on the Mickleover Running Club website.

Welfare Officer

Summer is on the way!
The evenings are getting lighter, the weather is (hopefully) getting warmer and the draw of the country lanes and trails for some fantastic rural running is getting stronger.

Whether you are running as part of a club run or hitting the trails by yourself or in a small group, here are a few safety considerations to bear in mind:

  • Wear an ICE (in case of emergency) tag on your trainers. If there was an incident whist you were out running it is unlikely that you would be carrying other forms of ID, the tags have an emergency contact name, number and any medical conditions on them. Just a reminder that it is part of the MRC Code of Conduct that ICE tags should be worn on all club runs. (Replacement tags can be bought from the MRC shop)
  • Take care when crossing roads - it is easy to be distracted, especially when running as of part a group and chatting or when listening to music.
  • When running on roads without pavements run in a direction to face oncoming traffic.
  • Wear clothing appropriate for the weather conditions and remember to apply sun cream/wear a hat/sunglasses when necessary. It is possible to burn even when it is cloudy weather, but you might also need to take a wind/waterproof jacket if running on higher trails!
  • Carry water if necessary, in hotter weather you may need it even on a shorter run.
  • If possible let someone know the route that you are taking and a likely time of return, especially if you are heading off road or into less built up areas.

Most of all enjoy the longer hours of daylight and maybe use it to try some new and interesting routes this summer.

Have fun!


Website update

Vickey & Dai have being working hard on updating the clubs welfare and code of conduct policy which has (finally) been updated on the site.

Take a look using the link below.


Alan Percival
Run Coordinator

‘When you walk through the storm, hold your head up high and don’t be afraid of the dark. At the end of the storm, there’s a golden sky and the sweet silver song of a lark. Walk on through the wind, walk on through the rain, though your dreams be tossed and blown.

Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart, And you’ll never walk alone!!!!!!’

What an exciting 2 weeks it has been. The trip to Barcelona visiting one of the great cathedrals in the world of the Nou Camp. There, 2 great teams met and fought in a game where skill and for most of the game, it was the visitors who held sway in terms of possession and chances. However it was the home team of Barca who lead, but during the 2nd half the ‘GOAT’ popped up with 2 bits of magic that he can create, and suddenly, it was 3-0 and the Barca, the team of the last 12 years didnt just lead, but held a lead they could not loose. Not with this team!

Roll on 6 days, and to the Anfield - a place full of passion, history and a sense of optimism that is not felt anywhere else in the footballing world. Liverpool, surely could not pull this 1 back - even with the sense of history and the pull of Anfield, and added to this was the loss of their own Magician in Salah and the lynchpin of Firmino.

So it was, after 8mins or so, Liverpool pushed on and Henderson popped up in the box and took shot, but it was saved. Origi thou followed up to tap the the ball in the net. 1-0. However, Barca did not stop and whimper down, as much as Liverpool played forward, they did as well and had attempts on goal, that Alisson stood up and strong and kept all at bay. The nasty man of the Braca team, the old fan fav at Anfield Saurze had a go at Robertson which meant poor Jurgen had to chop and change his team resulting in the Milner at left back and on came Wijnaldum. Within 10mins the game, had swung completely as Barca were left flat footed. The quality in the crosses that was missing a week ago, had returned as Wijnaldum - not once but twice connected cleanly to put the ball in the net. It was 3-0 on the night and 3-3 over all, with 30+mins still to go.

Barca looked out of it, the passing - gone, passion - gone, enterprise - gone, pressing and tackling - gone - it was all Liverpool. To the credit, the Reds still didnt force the game they played it their pace, the way they wanted to play it. Barca still had Messi, but he didnt step up, he didnt pull the rabbit out of the hat, he didnt do a ‘Gerrard’, and lead his team. It was a 20yr old local lad who thought like Messi, and played a ball with such thought - catching the Barca defence out completely (well it reflected the whole Braca Team), and TAA playd in a ball from a corner for the hero Origi to step up and place the ball in the net. 4-0, yes 4-0 and leading. Yet - 10mins to go. Barca pushed on, but did nothing - showed no fight, no spirit - something that was clearly evident within the whole of the Liverpool team & squad.

The final whistle goes and scenes, that even I have not seen in my many years of following/supporting Liverpool errupted! All round the ground and on the pitch the celebrations started, led by the Manager. The team then stood in front of the Kop - and fans & teams sung the anthem on the Reds.

Was this unique, this comeback of comebacks? Well - 1977 - V St Etinne, early 2000s vrs Auxerre, 2004, Olympiacos, 2016 V B Dortmund, and ofc 2005 V Roma. This thou was different, this was against Barca - rated the best team in Europe with currently the best player in the world. I have never seen anything like this in all years (and it is a few)!

(Comms Editors note aka Spurs fan Tracey: Yes there was a better come back…it’s called Tottenham and we did it against Ajax one night later!!!!)

Oh - better write something about running guess !

Alan Percival
Run Coordinator

England Athletics
Supports MRC!

The club, like individuals, pay an affiliation fee to English Athletics, but what do we, as a club get for this fee?

One of the support systems that EA offers is the Club Run program, a program where the EA provides one if there highly qualified coaches to visit a club and to run a session.

MRC had this option provided to us and on Tuesday this last week, Chris Hollinshead came down to the Legion and took the main session.

The session provided an insight into warming up and some exercise that can be used to help us all warm up prior to a run which included knee lifts, skipping sides and running around trying not to hit each other.

Then onto the first of the main work outs, where the group was placed into teams called ‘Italy’, ‘Japan’, ‘Wales, ‘Russia’ and ‘Columbia’ – where they had to go out and collect discs of their team colour – all set at various distances.

This was all about using our short high burst energy system – running hard over a short distance. The 2nd of the main workout was an exercise called ‘parlefs’ – which is a 2-person exercise – 1 member running hard, 1 on recovery. In total, 10 sets were ran – adding up to about 2000m of hard running in total – prob something that some of our members didn’t realise they had in them! The final session was a mixed relay – some members doing a short leg while others doing a longer leg – all in mixed ability teams. Then finally a cooldown – easy 2 lap run of the field.

By the looks of everyone one on the night, they seemed to have a good time, and doing something new and different that was delivered by an experienced coach from the EA all helped to keep people motivated.

Chris will be back for the 2nd of 3 session in mid May, and if there is anything you would like to try, please let me know so I can pass on the ideas to Chris.

Club Runner

My Marathon Story

In 2017 I went to watch Beckie run London Marathon – it was a really humbling experience and for the first time ever I thought “I’d like to do this”.

A few days later after the emotions had worn off and reality kicked in, I decided no way! Then a few months later I joined MRC….many of you make it seem so normal to run a marathon so into the ballot I went for London 2019 – Beckie and I had a pact that if one of us got in, the other would get a charity place and we would fundraise together.

October came and, as for many of us, I received the email telling me I didn’t get a place. Slightly sad but I think it was mostly relief! Amy Archard had got in and was in complete shock…especially as she was getting married a month after the marathon!

So I thought that my London 2019 dream was over…but there was still the club ballot to give me a chance. After the AGM on 20 November 2018, the ballot was drawn. When my name was read out I felt in complete shock and think I mouthed a very naughty word! Sorry! It was also a shocker for Beckie as it meant she had to try to secure a charity place! The first person I messaged was Amy – my message read “I only got the bloody place”! I couldn’t stop saying “I can’t believe it” for days!

Beckie managed to get a place with the charity Sense, so at the beginning of January we began our training – following a plan from Alan (thank you Alan!). Quite a few of us were doing London or other spring marathons so we had a group chat and started our regular weekend running group! Luckily the winter was kind to us and we had very little bad weather to contend with. I remember our first 18 miler (furthest I and a few others had ever run) was tough – we ran from the end of the cycle track up through Hilton to Hatton (Nestle factory) and back. Great flat route – but those last few miles up the track were gruelling. You know that Amy, Beckie and I are finding it tough if we stop talking! We were quiet those last 2-3 miles!

Training as part of a group really was fab – it made it pleasurable! Some weeks there were up to 12 of us out together. Thanks to everyone who joined for any of the runs – Vicky, Shelly, Clive, Michael, Paul, Dougal, Ray, John, Callum, Sarah, Marc, Richard, Alan (sorry if I’ve forgotten anyway!)

The last long run (21 miles) for Beckie, Amy and I had to be done on a Friday evening straight after work – again it was a tough run but we had some giggles (all three of us having a wee on the cycle track…we didn’t get spotted!)

As the day approached nerves kicked in…but by the time we went to London on the Saturday I felt mostly excited! We went to the Excel to collect our numbers and bumped into quite a few of the Mickleover crew!

The day came and Beckie and I left our hotel at 7am ready to make our journey to separate start lines. I met Amy at Charing Cross and we made our way to Blue start together. After a few queues for the toilets, it was time to make our way to the start! We didn’t start until about 10.50 and were cold and ready to get warmed up! I was so excited to cross the start line that I forgot to start my Strava! I didn’t stop smiling for the first few miles – loved it! Beckie had started in the red start but we had a masterplan to meet up at mile 4 marker on the left. A few phone calls before the start line and some delaying tactics from Beckie (she was in an early start zone) meant that it worked perfectly – she waited about a minute for us at the mile 4 marker. I was so happy to see her and that the three of us were together again. We stayed together for the whole race and really helped each other round.

We saw some of our friends/families at mile 6, then again at 11 miles. Mile 16 and the next few miles were tough for me, I got a pain in my foot which I’d been suffering with for a few weeks. Was a good boost to see Emma Cull at mile 22 ish! Then at mile 23 we saw our friends/families again – I was so pleased to see Paul and Millie etc – I felt so emotional and had a few tears! But it really gave me a boost as after that I felt great and loved the last 3 miles. To hear strangers shouting “come on Nic you’ve got this” is just so humbling and made me feel amazing! Running up the Mall was just surreal! It felt great to be with Beckie and Amy – we started our training together in January and crossed that finish line hand in hand! It was such a great experience – I loved it! Running a marathon really is like childbirth – painful at the time, but at the end you have something amazing and forget the pain!

I am a week on writing this and I’m still on a high and thinking I want to do it again! I’ve entered the ballot so we’ll see if I’m lucky!

I was apprehensive about the training required – but training as part of a group really was a great experience, I am even going to miss our long Saturday morning runs!

Thanks to everyone for your support and advice – and thanks so much for helping Beckie and I reach a whopping £3500 for Sense!


Photo of the fortnight

Photo of the fortnight this week goes to Ewan's amazing Birthday cake.

Hope you had a fantastic Birthday!!!

Alan Percival
Run Coordinator

Race Results

Well, the mighty 7 that ventured down to London all got round what is one the best events on the running calendar. All I can say is congrats to them all. Of course, one can not forget Michael who ran the Tissington Marathon on the same day – he seem to struggled his calf, but got through it – thus making a total of 8 completing a marathon on this weekend. I only did an off road 10k – ok, it was hilly!

There are many reasons why people join a running club with one being the support of fellow members. Most gain this by running together – but it is also by supporting others as they take part in events. So it was on Bank Holiday that about 20 members ran in both the Great North Half & 10k, supported by what seemed to be another 20 members on the side lines. They certainly heard the shouts as we cheered on various members.

Many ran very well, in near idea conditions on a route that we, errrrrr – know only too well as it is undulating and energy sapping, but very close to home for us. Ross smashed the Half, Jake jogged round with a smile on his face, with Marion & Doug putting in great runs too. Mark L, went off and decided to try and lead the 10k for a bit (well – up to the first mile he said) and finished 6th, Hannah J graced the route and was the 2nd lady to finish and 10th overall, while others set new PBs : Clive & Tina. There were many who ran, and ran very well – too many to mention, so please accept my apologies in not mentioning you all – but please take great comfort in the effort you all showed on the day.

Finally, a big thank you to all who came out and supported, to cheer and shout - it made MRC the club of the day 😊.

The weekend this is out, the Sinfin Classic 10k will have been ran, ok – I ain’t that good to get it results and a brief report out so – well done to all …. :D easy!

Alan Percival
Run Coordinator

Events Update
19th May
Carsington 7 – race 2 in the DRS.
19th May
Leiden Marathon where Sarah will be the latest to hit the marathon roads!
26th May
Liverpool Marathon – Mark L is at it again, oh and myself! Zoe H, Clive & Jacqui will be off on the half!
9th June
Derby Half: (Race 3 in the Club Champs & race 2 in the DRS)

Good luck to all who will be running in whatever event and where ever it may be.

Away from racing, there are other events planned for the club and the members:

14th May
we have the 2nd session led by Chris Hollinshead as part of the EA Club Support programme. Last time he gave a good and very different club session – and once again passing on his ideas to you all. This is open to all members to take part and a chance to have a go at something a little different. The final session is on the 11th June.

Alan & Vicky Capt


On the run with...
Paul Dolman

We go on the run with our members and we find out a bit more about them – which we thought would be great to share, this time it is with...

When did you start running and when did you join Mickleover Running Club?
I started running occasionally in 2009 and joined MRC in February 2018
What’s the best thing about being in a running club?
The motivation of running as part of a group, and the friendliness of the members
When and who do you run with the club?
I try to make club runs on both Tuesday and Thursday whenever possible. I tend to run with the 8:30min/mile group, although I have been known to venture out with the fast guys!
Tell us your history of running?
I wasn’t a runner in my younger years, dodging cross country at school became a favourite pastime and the running track was less of a friend and more of a foe - I’d rather be playing badminton, football or even fishing! I had no real interest in running until my mid 30’s and my inspiration to run came from watching Mrs D complete her first 10k, the Tara Kinder at Elvaston Castle. The gauntlet had been thrown down in the Dolman household and I just had to get involved.
What has been you best running achievement?
This is an easy answer - completing my first marathon in Manchester in April this year. I started out with the ambition of sub-4 hours, and then after a few niggles in training I just wanted to complete it. Fortunately I managed both… just.
What is your running ambition?
Having run the UK’s second biggest marathon I now want the big one. Come on balloteers… give me a VMLM place this year please!
Why do you run?
I run for fitness, and for the social aspect, but also the buzz of completing an event and seeing an improvement in my performance. In all honesty I thought the days of PBs were behind me until I joined MRC.
Favourite place to run?
Tracks, trails and anywhere with water. Being a bit of a closet naturalist (read that carefully…) rivers, canals, lakes, reservoirs all are good with me. A circular around Elvaston Castle and the river Derwent path through Borrowash and Alvaston would have to be my number one route. A finish at the Harrington Arms makes it just perfect…
Tell us about your worst run?
The Ramathon 2018 - The irony that it takes in part of my ‘favourite place to run’ isn’t lost on me! Having focused on getting my 10k time down last year I thought I’d be able to rock up on a devilishly hot June day and blast out a PB as easy as you like… Wrong. Apparently a couple of 8 mile “long” runs isn’t sufficient to bridge the gap between 10k and half-marathon. Needless to say my 2012 half PB remains intact.
Best running phrase?
I always like to hear “James Kelly? He’s 100 yards behind you.”
Favourite running photo?
High five with my old man at the Sinfin Classic 10k last year (please see above)
Have you ever lost your running mojo and how did you get it back?
If I don’t have any events booked I can struggle for motivation. Get some in the diary!
Best route around Mickleover/Derby?
Mickleover – Burnaston – Etwall – Great Northern Line – Radbourne Estate - Mickleover
Who would be on your wish list to run with?
Rachel Riley! Does she run? Does it matter?
Worst/Best running advice you’ve ever been given?
The best is hard to say really, but the marathon advice from Phil S & Alan P was absolutely invaluable this year - thanks to both of you Worst advice was from Derby running legend Dave Mann in a northern pub the night before the 2012 Great North Run. “Have a drink” he said, “You would do if you were at home… “. I ended up overindulging and in a late night duet of an Andy Williams classic with the pub’s solo artist. I got a half marathon personal worst, and to this day I still don’t know words to any Andy Williams songs!
What do you think about when you run?
On MRC runs – Do they know where they are going? On solo runs – I have no idea where I am going
Run to time or distance?
Distance. Followed very closely by time.
What was your favourite race and why?
Derby 10 mile 2018 – it was a day when everything felt good and I ran beyond what I expected after the misery of the Ramathon.
Tell us about your pre-race rituals and food and drink.
I generally stop in bed too long, rush to get ready and grab a banana and a cup of tea if I’m lucky. Text book prep…
If you could choose anywhere in the world to run, where would it be?
From whichever pub on the Norfolk Broads my boat was moored at. I don’t own a boat, but maybe one day eh Nic!
What’s your one race essential?
I’m always wearing my MRC club colours
Would you run a marathon without getting a medal?
Yep. Medals are nice to have, but for me it’s more about the achievement than the bling.


And finally...

An old nike advert