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Ryston Runners members remaining active during coronavirus pandemic

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People’s Facebook pages at the moment seem to be full of memories of what they were doing at this time last year.

This is particulalrly noticeable among the athletics fraternity for whom every weekend would have featured a race or a track and field match.

Undaunted, members of Ryston Runners AC have been finding ways of competing against one another, and indeed members of other clubs.

Helen Reed (34676062)
Helen Reed (34676062)

The weekend of the London Marathon Helen and Jeff Reed were part of a group of Gayton residents covering the Marathon distance between them.

Last weekend, in lieu of the GEAR race which has been postponed until October, several members ran their own 10k routes and posted their results for comparison.

One group from the club, which used to meet regularly to train together on Wednesday evenings, have lived up to their tag “Don’t Give Up” have organised their own handicap challenge based on their 10k times.

Jeff Reed (34676064)
Jeff Reed (34676064)

Last week, to mark the anniversary of the first four-minute mile being run by Roger Bannister at Iffley Road stadium in Oxford, they challenged each other to a “Bannister Mile” competition.

They are now extending this to cover shorter distances, with 400m and 800m next on the cards.

Having watched the international garden pole vault challenge on the World Athletics You Tube channel, featuring the three top male vautlers in the world, one wonders how long before other event challenges catch the imagination and other improvised track and field events begin to take place in gardens and yards around the area.

Baby gate hurdles, anyone?

Other competitive activities that members have been engaging in include choosing an ultra course, such as the length of Hadrian’s Wall, and setting themselves the challenge of completing it in local stages in a set time frame, or entering their times in virtual online challenges.

However, probably the most meaningful coming together apart of club members and friends in the past week was last Thursday when they comlpeted “Ten for Ted”, running/walking as close to 10k as they could, where they could, and when they could, but as near to 8am as possible, in honour of the late Ted Bensley on the day of his funeral, and in support of his son, Nic, a prolific Ryston Runner.

Ted was known to many members of the club for his great interest in its activities and , of course, pride in his son’s achievements.

n More Ryston news in next Friday's Lynn News.

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