The ‘Friendly Frolic’ was a charity fun run, that took place on 10th March 2019, as a fundraiser for the NSPCC. This made up part of my fundraising for the year, as I build up to running the London marathon for the charity in April.
The plan was to create a run that was fun (of course), did not put runners under pressure, created a friendly sociable atmosphere and appealed to the widest possible audience. I like to think we ticked all of those boxes.
The day brought with it a real mixed bag of weather. 50 mph winds, some rain, some hail, but of course some glorious sunshine.
The run was organised as a ‘Frolic’. Running as many or as few laps as runners wanted to, over a given period of time, in this case 5 hours. The twist on the normal format, was that instead of one course, we had 5 loops to choose from, all of which started and ended at the Bargeman Rest in Newport, who acted as our wonderful hosts for the day.
It wasn’t marshalled, it wasn’t timed, there were no prizes. Just lot’s of runners getting out, having fun, and donating money to a great cause.
The loops provided some variety. Flat ones, hilly ones, cycle paths, main roads, tarmac and footpaths. They also provided much debate amongst the runners. Should I get the long loop (11 miles) out the way first? Shall I run a mixture of loops of repeat the same one? As it happened, there really was a mixture. Many ran one loop, some collected a range of different loops, some ran the same loop 4 times! Some ran 4 miles, some ran with their children, some ran solo with their headphones in, some ran en masse with their mates, some ran a marathon!
Another important aspect, was that it was an ideal framework for people to get in a long marathon training run. It gave people the support of a drink station and some much needed snacks, whilst they took on a long training run. We had 25 runners who ran over 15 miles, a run which I’m sure will stand them in good stead for the upcoming Spring marathons, as they go off to tackle the likes of the London, Brighton, Manchester and Southampton courses.
A special well done to the young man that was just 8 years old, that went out on a 3 mile run with his Mum.
Another big congrats to Kelly Forster and her son Louis. I’m not sure who dragged who round, but young Louis complete half marathon distance for the first time.
It wasn’t a competition, but I do need to say well done to the 3 runners that completed approximately marathon mileage. They were Sarah Holmes who ran the furthest by running the same out and back loop 4 times! Phil Mannall who clocked up a marathon if we include his run from home to the start, and Matt Fletcher who ran approx 25 miles as he gets ready for the London Marathon.
A more important stat is that between our runners they covered almost 1,000 miles, and they donated an awesome £725 to the NSPCC 🙂
Well done to everybody that took part, you were all winners, and thank you to our hosts The Bargemans Rest and to our team of helpers, Ruth, Claire, Giorgio and Luke.