Wisewood women avoid wobbles


Article by Derek Fish as featured in the Sheffield Star

Image: Alan Janaszek, PhotoPro Images

Residents in Sheffield may have noticed a group of ‘chatting females’ striding out on Monday evenings. It’s all in the best possible taste though, as members of a women-only running group look to stop their ‘wobbly bits’ from wobbling too much!

Strideout Run England Group came about a couple of months ago to empower women to take up the sport or step up their running to another level.

They meet every Monday evening at 6pm in the reception area of Wisewood Sports Centre and the emphasis is very much on friendship, fun and ultimately, improved fitness under the guidance of licensed coaches Andrea Barber and Gaye Fletcher. They will both be attending the local launch of Run England in Sheffield on Tuesday 2 August along with Sheffield-born former boxing champ and Sky Sports pundit Johnny Nelson.

The group caters for all abilities from complete ‘newbies’ to established runners who want to improve their technique and pace.

Gaye said: “The purpose of the group is to inspire women to take up running for a variety of reasons from social to health, or to improve motivation, confidence and wellbeing.

“We felt from experience that most women chose not to join a running club as they felt the whole aspect extremely daunting and in particular didn’t feel that most running groups in Sheffield would cater for their lack of experience or speed.

“Having spoken to lots of women we found that most were willing to run in a group, if it were women only and so Strideout – making tracks for female fitness – was born!

“We all know the benefits that running has to our health but few of us have the confidence to take up the sport for various reasons... we worry about what we look like, how we will feel, will I get out of breath too quickly, will the hills be too steep, will my wobbly bits wobble too much when I run!

“None of this matters at Strideout as we all support and encourage each other to try our best and find a pace and distance that we are happy with. We all have demanding lives but believe me the demands of life seem that little bit easier when you feel refreshed and motivated after your weekly run.”

Strideout offers its members two options, a ‘walk-jog’ session which gives those new to running the opportunity to give it a try in a staggered programme and a ‘run’ session which encourages participants to take to the road for a more sustained period of time.

Routes are changed every few weeks to keep the runs interesting and different and while many will moan about the hills, Gaye is quick to point out that they will ‘help tighten those butt cheeks.’

At the moment they have around 24 members but more are welcome. Anyone interested should contact Gaye on 07908737194 or Andrea on 07535968007 or email strideout@btinternet.com.

For more information on local running opportunities sign up to Run England free membership at www.runengland.org/join.


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