Windsor and Maidenhead
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GoodGym’s 1st ever VIRTUAL RACE
Hey all. I’ve been busy working on a NATIONAL race that everyone can participate in! It’s the 1st EVER virtual 5km! 🏃♂️ 🏃♀️
🗓 When? All of October 📍Where? Anywhere! 🏃♂️ How? Walk/Run 5km 💰 Cost? £13
Sign up link - https://www.virtualrunneruk.com/product/goodgyms-october-5k/
As part of your sign up fee... You’ll get the EXCLUSIVE GoodGym medal (Don’t miss out - posted in comments) and 20% of your signup fee will be donated by the company back into GoodGym so we can keep on doing our amazing work nationally.
It’s not limited to just GG runners - so friends and family can take part too! We’ve got an initial 300 spaces - so make sure you spread this far and wide!
SIGN UP NOW! (Would appreciate earlier sign up than later as we’ll need to order a set amount of medals).
Hoping this is the first of many Virtual GoodGym races - and one of the many ideas spurred out of the #COVID19 lockdown.
Let me know who’s keen in the comments! 💭
Windsor and Maidenhead
Please note that this community mission has been cancelled.
The Windsor Homeless Project offers empathy and practical support to the homeless and vulnerable in a non-judgemental and compassionate way. The Project began in 2009 after a homeless man named Patrick O'Leary died in Windsor from cold and lack of care. A community came together determined that this should never happen again.
The church hall where the Project is normally based needs some some painting doing, so we have booked two sessions to help out. This is part 1. Part 2 is at the same time the next day and you can book onto that community mission by clicking here.
Spaces are limited due to the area we will be working in and the need to socially distance, so please sign up in advance. You might get paint on your clothes, so don't wear your favourite ball gown.
Run, walk, or cycle to the task, and why not join a small group for a few extra km after the task too? Route TBC.
Elinor has done their first race with GoodGym. Performing on the day is a lot of pressure; Elinor's dealt with the nerves and turned up on the day to make it happen.
Windsor and Maidenhead
I can run a rainbow, run a rainbow...
Pride parades and running events around the world have had to be cancelled this year, but like many GoodGym areas, we still wanted to celebrate Pride and show our support for the LGBT+ community. Our original plan was to join GoodGym Norwich in signing up to the #RunWithPride virtual event, but Area Activator Steven Hitcham clearly did a great job getting people involved, because it was sold out before we had the chance. So we decided instead to raise money for Switchboard.
Switchboard is the UK's confidential helpline open to LGBTQ+ communities and beyond, for anyone who wants to talk about gender identity, sexuality, sexual health and emotional wellbeing. As the charity explain in their Just Giving Story:
It's so critical that we talk about mental health, tackle stigmas and work to reduce levels of loneliness across the LGBTQ+ communities now more than ever.
We wanted to plan a Pride event that would bring people together whilst remaining within Covid-19 social distancing guidelines, so we designed a 5km route around the lovely Pinkney's Green area and assigned runners different start locations to ensure it wouldn't turn into an accidental Parkrun. We also split the group into clockwise runners and anti-clockwise runners, so that we would pass and be able to give each other a cheer on the way round.
The original #RunWithPride event gave runners the option to choose their distance, so we did the same. We expected most runners to do 1 or 2 laps, but then Wendy got involved...She signed up early and set the bar much higher, punching for a whopping 25km! Then there were the husband and wife teams who wanted to do their own family relays, and the ones who also had to fit in cricket matches.... Suddenly our little Saturday morning outing was taking on a life of its own!
On race day route master James Lovell was the first to lace up his trainers. He ran the course armed with chalk and heroically marked arrows to help everyone find their way round. Then he ran it again!
Tara and John also jumped the 9am gun, heading out for multiple laps, and stopping to share tasting notes on last night's red wine when they passed.
Then 9am came round and despite the dry weather, a rainbow magically arced over this corner of Maidenhead... twelve-ish runners took to the course and there was much whooping and cheering to be heard every five or ten minutes as we passed each other.
Without the classic start to finish linear race structure everyone was mixed up - faster and slower, old friends and new friends, single lappers and multiple lappers, runners on home turf and those a bit less familiar with the course who were making it up as they went along...it was a real celebration of doing your own thing!
And as if the boost we got from each other wasn't enough, we were also cheered on by each other's families. A special mention goes to Amy's Mum and Dad, who came from Reading to set up the only official marshal station.
Extra kudos to Lara, who reached for the stars and smashed her GoodGym target to run 10km in under 52 minutes. Way to go Lara! And when that rainbow's shining over you...that's when your dreams will all come true...
I can wear a rainbow too
Runners had been encouraged to wear a spectrum of colours to celebrate the diversity and joy synonymous with Pride, and - perhaps inspired by the proliferation of rainbow imagery during Lockdown -they did themselves proud. There were rainbow head bands, wristbands, socks and ribbons a-plenty; Amanda and her running buggy co-pilot sported matching leggings and shared a fabulous cardigan, Sula also had zany leggings and Em was ready to pirouette round the course in her tutu. There were lots of bright GoodGym t-shirts and some great rainbow tops including Elly and Hayley's positive positive positive anddo what makes you happy slogan tees, as well as a lovely number Sophie had nicked from her mum.
Later on in the day Clare even carried her rainbow beach towel and Meggie's handsome dog Klaus kept cool in rainbow sunnies and a tasselled kerchief. Along with Paul they kept the event going through the midday Sun and beyond.
But hands down the prize for best dressed goes to....
Ana! Representing her home-land of Mexico, this chica sported a full sarape (poncho) and topped it off with a curly rainbow wig. We like your style - tres hurras por Ana!
The pot of gold
At the end of the race, the pot of gold for each of us is knowing that we have pushed ourselves to go out and do something positive; and there is a real pot of gold for Switchboard too. So far we have raised £190, and here is the link for the Just Giving page if you would like to donate too. We really appreciate your support!
You heard about us squeezing the day in the 48 hour virtual relay... you followed that Pride rainbow, and now you're hungry for more... Well you're in luck! We have loads of spaces coming up on community missions over the next few weeks. These sociable group events involve running, walking or cycling to a meeting point where we work together to carry out a task that helps our community. Check out our 'happenings page' for all details and to sign up.
Amy is also cooking up some great running events to support the Magpies 150 Challenge. Intrigued? Watch this space..
Elinor completed a community mission. Instead of watching TV or lying in bed, Elinor was out there making their community a better place to be. For making that choice they have earned the community cape.
Elinor is a now a fully fledged GoodGym runner. They've just run to do good for the first time. They are out there making amazing things happen and getting fit at the same time.
Windsor and Maidenhead
This warm July evening marked Windsor and Maidenhead's first group litter pick. Newcomer Elly (a big welcome to you!) asked Amy how it all works and Amy had to admit she really had no idea...Luckily we had Slough Taskforce member and litter picking expert Jen with us, as well as lots of other brilliant and lovely people (Ana, Charlotte, Rheka, Tara and Wendy that's you!) so we had no trouble picking it up as we went along...
We met outside Maidenhead's Coppa Club and agreed it was a good thing it was closed, or we might have been too tempted by cool drinks and not have made it much further. We devised a divide and conquer strategy and set off in three small groups heading South along different routes, converging and diverging at various points along York Stream in a sociable yet distanced fashion.
And my goodness did we conquer! We're not just talking quantity - the expected cigarette butts, cans, bottles, snack wrappers - but quality too. If, that is, you define the quality of your haul by its bizarre and grotesque nature. Some of the more surprising items included:
- A stick-on bra (the bust of all the jokes)
- A set of false nails and a pile of hair trimmings (evidence of illicit manicuring and barbering during lockdown or something more sinister??)
- A black t-shirt
- A metal spoon and broken bowl
- The oxygen tank for a Lego mini-figure
Litter is a bit rubbish, but it was a lovely evening to be out along Maidenhead's Waterways - discovering new paths, admiring the wild-flowers and seeing swans and ducks. It was great to revisit the Green Lane weir, where we recently had a weir-ly pun-derful community mission helping Maidenhead Waterways clear weeds from the channel (link to that run report here), and where we hope to return on a regular basis. It was also heart-warming how many passers-by thanked us for our efforts.
We in turn owe a huge thanks to Councillor Phil Haseler, who lent us litter pickers and hoops. If you are interested in joining one of Cllr Haseler's group litter picks in Cox Green click this link to join his Facebook group, where he posts details. Don't forget that if you do good deeds like this outside of official GoodGym activities you can still log them through your GoodGym profile so that they contribute to your numbers. This is important if you like cake because we celebrate milestone numbers of good deeds with cake! As an aside, is anyone any good at making cake? We are going to need a lot of cake...
Windsor and Maidenhead
Join a small group to plog (pick litter and jog!) along the towpath from Maidenhead High Street, past the library across Stafferton way and around the Green Lane Weir.
Add a few extra km to your evening's activity with an optional lap or two of the leafy Parkrun route around the Braywick Nature Reserve when we finish. Key details:
- Meet at the High Street near the Coppa Club at 7pm.
- If you have your own litter picker or hoop please comment below. The leader will bring kit for those who don't have it.
- Don't forget your protective gloves
- Take care to maintain social distancing, especially along narrower sections of the path.
- Bring a head torch if you plan to run in the Nature Reserve afterwards.