Claire Hobson

Windsor and Maidenhead

20Good deeds

35runs

40cheers

Claire Hobson went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Maidenhead parkrun #277 meets GoodGym Community Mission #535...and a deer!

Sat 6 Nov
Report written by Amy Lovell

After GoodGym sessions we always write a run report, and one of the jobs on the parkrun volunteer roster that we were invited to sign up for was Run Report Writer. So we decided to roll the GoodGym and parkrun reports into one, et voila! Thanks to GoodGym member Kelley Sharpe for the wonderful photos above. There are also many more great shots posted on the Maidenhead parkrun Facebook page by Colin Webb.

A big thank you to Run Director Ed Dimmock and all the other volunteers on the roster for welcoming 15+ GoodGymers to help out at Maidenhead parkrun this week. Congratulations also to Ed on his 50th turn as Run Director, an impressive recent milestone that he's kept very quiet.

Now for the numbers bit...

There were 296 runners today, including 12 first timers and 21 tourists. Congratulations to those runners celebrating milestones today: Andy Broadbent, Mark Halton and Louise Rawlings all achieved 50 parkruns and Sally Gaines and Sarah Simms each reached the big 100. Sarah also helped out as a barcode scanner today - her 25th time as a volunteer.

Adam and Lara Bennett from Maidenhead Athletic Club were the first man and lady to finish with times of 18.19 and 21.11 respectively. GoodGym's very own Juli Wood achieved the highest age grade with a score of 76.94% - go Juli! 29 runners (10% of the field) achieved a PB today.

And a few other things that made today's parkrun deer to our hearts...

  • Marshal Matt Snelling had to deal with a deer crossing the path. Matt reported that he was stag-gered to see the animal. Was this a first for Maidenhead? We have no i-deer!

  • We had cake, and lots of it! Thank you to Juli, Georgeta, Tessa, Claire, Tara, and Ruth, who all contributed to GoodGym's cake and sweets table. Everything was deer-licious and beautifully presented with GoodGym flags, colours and the logo written in fawn-dant icing! Oh deer, I doe apologise, we have a bit of a pun tradition at GoodGYm...

  • Today was the first outing for our beautiful GoodGym flag, which Sheila whipped up earlier in the week. Thanks to Georgeta for taking it home after the event for some finishing touches.

  • We were also delighted to have our mascot doll Goodie joining us today, and she loved hanging around the cake table and meeting lots of new faces (and hopefully future GoodGymers!) Goodie was crocheted by the very talented Claire Hobson. We wonder if she'll be running the Reading half along with Claire tomorrow?

  • Our tail walkers today had two real tails! Extra kudos to one of them, Sophie Lack's dog Leah, for sporting a black GoodGym t-shirt. By all accounts today's tail walking crew had quite the adventure, racing to catch up with the field after the person they were initially back-marking opted for just one lap.

All the feedback from GoodGymers this morning was that they had a blast. Dean summed it up when he reported: 'Absolutely loved today, a real party atmosphere, I nearly lost my voice!' He was right, we had all the ingredients for a great party: exceptional hosts, friends old and new, loads of cake, dancing with DJ Rumble at Lynn's Lookout, and unlike last weekend there was no rein-deer!

If you're reading this as a parkrunner who is new to GoodGym, then you might be wondering who we are. GoodGym is a charity whose members combine getting fit with volunteering in our local community. We run, walk and cycle to help out charities and community projects with tasks like weeding, painting and sorting donations.

Check out our GoodGym Windsor and Maidenhead home page to see what we've been up to recently and to browse our upcoming events. We love to welcome new participants and it is easy to get involved. You just need to be over 18, and you can get started by registering on our website. There is no minimum time commitment, fitness level or specialist equipment needed to take part.

If you have any questions about GoodGym or know of a charity of community project that needs our help, please get in touch with amylovell@goodgym.org.

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Claire Hobson signed up to a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Volunteer at Maidenhead parkrun

Sat 6 Nov 08:35 am
The field to the North East of Braywick Leisure Centre, Braywick Park, Maidenhead, SL6 1BN
GoodGym meets parkrun - what could be better!?

Maidenhead parkrun is a weekly, free, timed 5km run at Braywick Park. It is a sociable and welcoming event, which helps hundreds of local people get their weekend off to a great start. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to help out Race Director Ros this week. This is also a great chance for us to wear our red t-shirts with pride and to spread the word about GoodGym within the local running community.

Before the session please email Amy at amylovell@goodgym.org with your Parkrun barcode. If you don't already have one please register by clicking here.

You can find out more about the volunteer roles available by clicking here. Some jobs can be done by the same person. E.g. run report writer can also do another job.

If you have a yearning for a specific role then please say so in the comments below or let Amy know when you email her with your barcode. Otherwise jobs will be allocated at random.

There is a little bit of training involved for scanning and time keeping and for those roles you will need to download the free Virtual Volunteer App onto your phone.

Volunteers must be on site by 8.35am for a briefing. If anyone is up for a short run beforehand then Amy would be keen to join you for a lap of the course (approx 2.5km), starting around 8.10am. If you're up for this please let Amy know in the comments below or by email.

Note that the nearby car parks are pay and display.

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Claire Hobson signed up to a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Planting oak trees at New Thrift Wood

Sun 5 Dec 10:30 am
Ockwells Park, Maidenhead, SL6 3YX
Help grow the mighty oaks of the future

Remember back in Summer 2020, when GoodGym helped harvest loads of acorns from the beautiful old oaks in Ockwells Park? Well, Alistair, who works with the RBWM countryside team, took those acorns home and gave them lots of love and now he has 150 plucky little oak saplings ready to return to Ockwells.

The plan for this session is to meet in the Ockwells car park at 10.30am. If it is your first GoodGym session, look out for friendly faces and red GoodGym t-shirts. We will then walk together approximately 1km to the New Thrift Wood site. Conditions may be wet, boggy and uneven underfoot, so you might want to wear boots rather than trainers.

We will meet Alistair at the planting site and he will set us up with the tools and skills we'll need to launch the oak saplings in their new home. Alistair has become rather fond of his green babies, so we won't just be chucking them in the ground. They will get the full star treatment with mulch and guards to protect them from animals and weeds.

The long-term aim is for New Thrift Wood to fill a gap between Ockwells' existing Thrift Wood and the similarly ancient and bio-diverse woodland owned by the neighbouring turf farmers. This swathe of woodland will create a great haven for flora and fauna, as well as helping fight the battle against climate change. We are unlikely to see the site mature within our lifetimes, but we hope it will be appreciated by future generations... and in the meantime we'll certainly enjoy a social morning of planting and soaking up nature!

We expect to be back in the car park by 1pm, but if you know your way around the park and need to leave sooner then you may do so.

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Claire Hobson went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Cake by the lake for the truly Good Juli Wood!

Wed 25 Aug
Report written by Amy Lovell

What a fabulous evening! Running, walking, weeding, chatting, new faces, old friends, beautiful light as the sun went down, a lovely lake-side setting, weeds that were satisfyingly easy to yank up, and the icing on the carrot cake was the opportunity to celebrate Juli's 50th good deed - hurrah!

Juli has not just ticked off 50 GoodGym good deeds in the past year, she has also worked really hard at every session she has attended. She is often the person we have to drag away at the end because she wants to pick up just one more piece of litter or pull up just one more weed. She has taught lots of us a thing or two about gardening, welcomed lots of new members, and led and photographed community missions and social runs as a Taskforce member.

She has also thrown herself enthusiastically into all the Lockdown running challenges and games, and inspires us all by running and walking A LOT and even winning various races. Not to mention she brings us home-grown beans!

Juli is a superstar GoodGymer so it was only fitting that a great big group would come out this evening to celebrate her milestone. Many hands made light work of the weeding, which was just as well, because we had a medal to present and cake to eat! A huge thank you to Georgeta for making the stunning and utterly delicious carrot cake, and for presenting it so beautifully with all the plates and forks we would need to dive in straight away. Thank you also to Sophie and fotodrop creations, who crafted the fabulous cake topper.

As well as celebrating Juli's achievements and welcoming lots of people back from holidays, it was also great to meet new members Karen and Nicola, and to see Carina returning for her second good deed. Hope to see you all again soon!

And finally, wowzers did you see that Hawk Moth caterpillar!? Thanks to Karen for identifying it. What an amazing little (but mind-bogglingly gigantic) creature!

Do keep an eye on the listings for a return to the Thames Hospice. We hope to be back for more weeding soon. We might even go for more cake too, having learned that there is a lovely cafe on site open 8am-7pm every day. Yum!

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Claire Hobson went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Creativity Unleashed

Sun 22 Aug
Report written by Amy Lovell

GoodGym members were given the opportunity to display their creative side, by making bunting for the Maidenhead Town Show. The brief was to create bunting representing the GoodGym organisation, and the result certainly did not disappoint. Amy hid the blank bunting in her garden for individuals to collect by running, walking or cycling, and then they set to work in creating their designs. Sophie started the ball rolling with her bunting encapsulating the GoodGym experience, setting a high standard for others to follow. Over the next few days, more bunting followed from Hannah, Nicola, Matt, Georgeta, Claire, Sula, Sheila, Tessa, Amanda and Amy. What a wealth of hither-to hidden creative talent had been unleashed, utilising a huge variety of techniques - Sharpies, paint, embroidery, appliqué and crochet as well as some inspired use of pom poms, buttons, sequins, and even scrabble pieces and a playing card. The GoodGym logo and red and white featured heavily in the designs. Sheila and Amy sewed the 43 pieces of bunting onto over 10 metres of tape ready for display on the big day. A huge thank you to everyone who took part - a truly mammoth group effort, with stunning results, doing GoodGym proud. Even the ladies from the Craft Coop were impressed.

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Claire Hobson signed up to a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Garden session at the Thames Hospice

Wed 25 Aug 19:00 pm
Thames Hospice, Windsor Road, Maidenhead, SL6 2DN
Help out in this peaceful lakeside spot

Come and help out at the new Thames Hospice by Bray Lake. Help make the gardens and grounds pleasant for residents and their families, supporting the charity's aim to provide dignity and comfort to those facing life-limiting illnesses.

The to do list is still being confirmed, but we do know we are set for a sociable and productive evening in a lovely setting, and that we will need our gardening gloves.

There is a 2.5km path around the lake if anyone fancies a pre/post-task run or walk. Feel free to comment below or use the WhatsApp group to find buddies who are up for the same.

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Claire Hobson went on a community mission
Community mission
Windsor and Maidenhead

Ockwells junior parkrun #99 meets GoodGym community mission #450

Sun 4 Jul
Report written by Amy Lovell

After GoodGym sessions we always write a run report, and one of the jobs on the parkrun volunteer roster that we were invited to sign up for was Run Report Writer. So we decided to roll the GoodGym and parkrun reports into one, et voila! Thanks to GoodGym member Kelley Sharpe for the wonderful photos above.

A huge thank you to Run Director and GoodGymer Jen Francis and to the regular junior parkrun volunteers for welcoming GoodGym to help out at Ockwells this week. Thank you also to the weather, which smiled upon us at 9am despite being totally miserable an hour before. And kudos to the 25 runners and their families, who looked outside, saw that miserable weather and decided to go for it anyway.

Before the running began, Jen and her family did a great job of setting up the 2km course with cones, finishing funnel and flag, and briefing all the volunteers on their tasks for the morning. High vis jackets were distributed, tokens, token buckets and the virtual volunteer app were held at the ready and Tail Walker Anna donned the traditional lion's tail.

Attendees then gathered for the main event briefing and warm up. This started with a celebration of milestones acheived. Congratulations to Eleanor Hatchett-Walkers, who has now completed an incredible 50 junior parkruns, Phoebe Warren on completing her marathon (21 junior parkruns) and Tuana Demir on completing her half marathon (11 junior parkruns). Three cheers for each of you!

We also celebrated a GoodGym milestone, presenting Tara Isherwood with a medal for completing an amazing 50 good deeds with GoodGym. Tara's good deeds have included everything from volunteering at the Maidenhead vaccination clinic, to painting a pirate ship at a local school, gardening for local charities and and weeding Maidenhead's Waterways. Tara you're a superhero!

Jen also shared the important news that next week will be the 100th Ockwells junior parkrun, and we are all invited to wear fancy dress to celebrate!

Then came the fun warm up and countdown before we headed over to the start. As always the runners set off with great energy and there was much cheering. On their way round the course, runners and their families continued to show impressive energy and determination. Well done everyone!

First across the finish line was Oliver Credland with a PB of 9:31. He was followed by first timer Patrick Isherwood, and then Thomas Loveridge on his 45th time around this course. First female finisher was Caitlin Carey with a PB of 10:09. In total 7 runners achieved PBs today - nearly a third of the field. Awesome running! If you haven't already seen them, full results can be found here.

If today's event was the first time you heard of GoodGym, then you might be wondering who we are. GoodGym is a charity whose members combine getting fit with volunteering in our local community. Like parkrun, GoodGym believe in improving physical and mental health by bringing communities together, and chances are that if you like parkrun you'll like GoodGym. This 2 minute video helps bring to life what we are all about.

Check out our GoodGym Windsor and Maidenhead home page to see what we've been up to recently and to browse our upcoming events. We love to welcome new participants and it is easy to get involved. You just need to be over 18, register on our website and complete a quick online safety module before you can sign up to a session. There is no minimum time commitment or specialist equipment needed to take part. All of our activities are drop in to fit around busy lives.

If you have any questions about GoodGym or know of a charity of community project that needs our help, please get in touch with amylovell@goodgym.org.

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Claire Hobson signed up to a race
Race
Windsor and Maidenhead

Challenge for the whole of July - Team Run Around the World

Sat 31 Jul 23:45 pm
Wherever your legs take you, Wherever your heart desires, SL6 XXX
Join Team Nomads for a month long race around the Equator

GoodGym's partner Run Things have launched their virtual event for July 2021 - and I just know this one is going to capture the imagination of the GoodGym crowd in Windsor and Maidenhead...

The Run Around the World pits 5 teams against each other in a race around the equator. During the month of July, it's our job to run and walk as far as we can to contribute to our team's total of 40,075km.

All participants get a medal, and Run Things donate profits from their events to charities who support, develop and benefit the mental and physical wellbeing of the public.

GoodGym is the captain of #TheNomads, so that's the team we want to be part of and cheer on. I have also created a sub-team called GoodGym Windsor and Maidenhead, so search for and join this team when you sign up.

Get involved by entering on the Run Things website, and spreading the word.

Kids can't sign up to this GoodGym listing, but you might be interested to know that Run Around the World entries are available for them too - they won't need an account area and their distances won't be tracked. They'll get a medal though, just so long as they are active.

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Claire Hobson went on a training session
Training session
Windsor and Maidenhead

#Lifegoals

Wed 23 Jun
Report written by Amy Lovell

Gorgeous sunny day to be out making the most of the lovely green space near our town, chatting about everything from the toy industry to parkrun, to how precious life is! We agreed we wouldn't have motivated ourselves to go out for a run at this time by ourselves, but going as part of a group gave us the impetus we needed. Well done to everyone who came along.

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Claire Hobson signed up to a training session
Training session
Windsor and Maidenhead

June month-long Magpies 150 Routemaster Challenge

Wed 30 Jun 23:45 pm
All sorts of interesting places, Around Windsor and Maidenhead, Windsor and Maidenhead, SL6 XXX
15 x 5km routes for 15 local charities. How many can you tick off?

This year Maidenhead Magpies Football Club are celebrating their 150th year. As part of their celebrations, and at a time when many local charities have been terribly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, they have launched the Magpies 150 Challenge, through which they are aiming to raise at least £150,000 to support 15 Windsor and Maidenhead based charities. You can find out more about the chosen charities by visiting their website here.

We took on some epic #150Challenges before Christmas and its time for another! This challenge is designed to get you out running or walking and it might give you some new local route inspiration too. Below you can find links to GPX files for 15 different routes. You should be able to open these using your favoured navigation device or app. Each one is roughly 5km. You have one month....how many can you tick off?

We would love to raise some more funds for the Magpies' 15 chosen RBWM charities too, so if you are taking part please consider making a donation to this Just Giving page or asking friends and family to sponsor your efforts. GoodGym is all about connecting with and helping our local community on our fitness journeys, and these 15 charities represent those who are most vulnerable and most in need of help in our local area.

The routes have been designed to start and end near parking but the parking is not always free or easy to find. If you have any questions, fire them at the team in this GoodGym Running Games WhatsApp group and hopefully you will find answers!

Running and walking with friends makes the miles go quicker. Use the WhatsApp group to find a running buddy and/or keep an eye on the happenings page for social small group runs on these routes.

Here are the routes...

Shottesbrooke Park

Ockwells and Thrift Wood

Copper Horse loop from Bishopsgate

Runnymede Memorials

Windsor Leisure Centre to Castle loop

North Town Moor Greenway

All the Bray Lakes

Battlemead and stop for an ice cream at Ray Mill Island

Winter Hill Golf Course and Cookham Moor

Brick and Tileworks and Spencer's Hill

Dungrovehill Wood

Thames and Jubilee

The Pinkneys Boot

Loop South of Holyport

Eton Wick, Eton and Thames

I have also shared the routes from my Strava profile in the GoodGym Running Games WhatsApp group, and James Lovell has helpfully plotted them on a couple of Google Maps. To check these out head over to the group, go to Group Info > Media, Links and Docs > Links.

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