Beginners running course launched following Virgin London Marathon

PUBLISHED: 15:33 21 April 2011

The first beginners at the end of their 10-week course. Keith Savill, who leads the course, is on the far right

The first beginners at the end of their 10-week course. Keith Savill, who leads the course, is on the far right


DID you sit on your sofa on Sunday watching the Virgin London Marathon and think “I’d like to try running”?

If so, then help is at hand from Saffron Walden’s running club the Saffron Striders.

The club is about to launch its third 10-week beginners course. The first two courses were huge successes, with many members now fully fledged club members - and one graduate even completing Sunday’s marathon!

The beginners course is part of the ‘Run England’ scheme which is aimed at newcomers, or anyone who hasn’t put their tracksuit and trainers on for many years.

This is definitely not for more experienced runners, but gives everyone the chance to take some regular exercise without feeling as if they’ve been left behind. Beginners will take things very much at their own pace.

The scheme is backed by England Athletics and organised by the Striders. The club, which has been going for more than 20 years, has runners of all different abilities - from those who just want to keep fit to those who take on marathons.

Club member Keith Savill, who leads the 10-week beginners courses, said: “The two courses we have run so far have been very successful but we know there are more people out there who would like to try running but either don’t know where to start or are put off at the thought of running with a group of more experienced people.

“So once again we want to encourage people who might be put off at the thought of joining the Saffron Striders without ever having run before, or without having run for many years. Perhaps you watched the London Marathon on Sunday and thought ‘I’d like to try that’.

“Anyone aged 16 and above is welcome to join up, whatever their ability or level of fitness. As fully trained group leaders, we’ll be making sure that you’re well looked after and have loads of fun.

“We’ve had a lot of people from the first two courses go on to become club members and they are now running races in Saffron Striders colours. It’s a really friendly club with a strong social element as well.”

The first session of the 10-week course will be on May 10 at 7pm at the Lord Butler Leisure Centre. The cost of the course will be £30 which includes a tee-shirt, insurance, and a year’s membership of Saffron Striders. The course follows a detailed training plan to suit all abilities.

If you’d like to give it a go contact group leader Mr Savill on 01223 892299 or e-mail him at

Places are limited so don’t delay in registering.

For more information on the Saffron Striders, visit

To find out about the Run in England scheme, visit

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