Goats on the run 17

There were so many events happening all over the UK last weekend, that it got us wondering which month has the most running events? We don’t know what the answer is, but October has to rank highly. For the 17th edition of goats on the run we’re shining the spotlight on some of the many Lonely Goats who ran in Chicago, Birmingham, Manchester, Oxford, London and beyond.

At Lonely Goat Running Club, all runners are welcome, regardless of the speed you run, the distance you run, the events you run, or the reasons why you run. This is why, in goats on the run we celebrate all achievements and shout about the runners who happened to catch our eye on our Facebook, Instagram and Strava channels. With so many members, it is impossible to feature all of you in goats on the run, but we do hope you take inspiration from the achievements of your fellow Goats.

Birmingham Half Marathon

Part of the massive Great Run series, Birmingham offers runners that ‘big city race’ feel, This year, it also offered an unexpected twist, as the course was shortened by a couple of miles due to security concerns.

Sarah Morgan

“Shame they had to cut 2 miles off it. Gutted, as this would have been my first ever Half Marathon. On the plus side, I did get a sub-30 5K, sub-1 hour 10K, and it took me 1:56′ to do 11 miles. It’s made me more determined to do it next year again.”

Andrew ‘Eddy’ Edwards

“Had a great day at the Birmingham Half Marathon. I was a bit confused when I crossed the finish line and it was 2 miles short, but then they posted there was a suspicious vehicle in the Cannon Hill Park area so I’m glad the course was moved in the end. I did have my Goats tee on, under my long sleeve top as I dressed for rain. Luckily that stayed away too.”

Andrew also volunteered to marshal at his local parkrun the day before.

Andrew Edwards and Donna Louise Brazier at the Birmingham Half Marathon 2019

Chicago Marathon, USA

You can read our preview of Chicago – one of the 6 World Marathon Majors – right here. The race didn’t go to plan for the defending men’s champion, Mo Farah, but the women’s race saw Brigid Kosgei run 2:14’04” to break Paula Radcliffe’s world record. Behind them, the herd was well represented, including the following runners.

Lewis Clarke


Rosina Attwood

Trevor Stow

“Cheers Goats! Had a terrific time running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. It’s a lovely city to run and support was amazing! GPS was very erratic which made pacing a challenge but I did my best. Very proud to represent the Lonely Goat Running Club on this one. Chip time: 4:03’52”.”

Great Yarmouth East Coast 10K

It wasn’t all about the half marathons and marathons last weekend – there was a great 10K in Great Yarmouth too.

Teresa Burdett

“Great Yarmouth East Coast 10K… a tad windy in places but a good run for all.”

Jenny Jones, Elly Haylock and Teresa Burdett are in the photo at the top of this page.

Manchester Half Marathon

15,000 people entered the Manchester Half Marathon. The event started in the city’s Old Trafford area and headed out to the south-western suburbs and back in. There were plenty of Goats running, including the following.

Anne-Marie Jane Pollard-Vearnals

“Manchester Half Marathon: COMPLETED!

Thanks for ALL of your love and support. I really enjoyed the run – never once thought about stopping, but my legs started to slow at mile 10 to mile 12. But then I picked up the pace again when the finish line was in sight! When I had to dig deep to bring the pace back I kept thinking ‘you’ve got this’ – as everyone kept telling me!.

I particularly enjoyed the brass band, the choir, the crooner and all the children and well wishers cheering us on and handing out jelly babies!

It was great to Goat Spot! And I even ran a mile or two with a goat in disguise!

So I have a PB of 2:18’19 for my 1st half marathon.

Oh, and I tried the ice bath at the end!”

Anne-Marie Jane Pollard-Vearnals after the Manchester Half Marathon 2019

Carla Christie


I only went and ran half a marathon yesterday. To say I am pleased would be an understatement: I am overjoyed beyond words to have crossed the finish line. The weather conditions didn’t look great with rain coming down whilst at the start but Manchester did good in holding back the clouds to keep us fairly dry. Mile 10 was by far the hardest and to be honest the point I could have stopped and gave up. Thankfully I had an amazing crowd cheering us on home and constantly reminding us of how well we are doing and not long to go – as well as Mark supporting me at the finish line. I set out to complete the course and that I am happy with.

My time was 2:16′ – again, chuffed to bits, after I never thought I’d run a race again last year. I broke my ankle a year ago (16th October 2018) and can’t put into words how I felt when it happened, compared to how I felt yesterday. Such a turnaround.

Never give up on your dreams!

Mark did super well and I am immensely proud of this guy – not only did he get a PB of 1:37′, but proud to have him by my side reminding me how I can achieve anything I set my mind to and for all the love he shows me every single day. We went babe and smashed it together! Couldn’t think of anyone I’d rather have done it with.

Well done to all the other Goats who were there and passed me along the way. And a lovely couple of lady goats who sat in the Premier Inn having breakfast before the race.”

Carla Christie and Mark at the Manchester Half Marathon 2019

Oxford Half Marathon

Judging from the comments in the LGRC Facebook Chat Group, the main feeling experienced by the runners at the Oxford Half Marathon was one of being very wet. Despite the rain, these Goats seem not to have had their enthusiasm dampened.

Cecilia Jane

“Over the weekend I achieved something that, while I’d been training for it, I’d never been 100% certain I would complete. Having only started running properly in March, by October I finished the Oxford Half Marathon! Not to mention the sheet water that nearly washed us all away on the day! Thank you British weather!

During this journey I lost a stone, found some amazing people and pushed my limits further than I probably should have! I have discovered a love of being outdoors and the little (and big) achievements that come from pushing yourself. It’s been a HUGE benefit to my mental health which I can’t stress enough!

However, a huge part of what got me running in the first place was raising money for Cancer Research UK. Cancer has been more a part of my life in the last 18 months than I would ever have wanted it to be, and the fact that the odds of being affected by cancer have risen from 1 in 3 to 1 in 2 shows how important it is to support such a charity. I didn’t create a Just Giving page or take people’s names down for donations this time, however I would ask that if you have a few pennies to spare this month, please go to www.cancerresearchuk.org and give what you can. I will keep running towards a future where cancer as we know it is a thing of the past!

PS: The main superstars are my parents for always being my biggest fans and for my wonderful other half who always believes in me, is there to pick me up and dust me off when I stumble and was there to catch me when I fell across the finish line!”

Ross McDonnell

“Shout out to all those who ran a race today, whatever your time and if you finished or not. We got out there and gave it our best. A lot of races around today it seems, and I ran the very very wet Oxford Half. Pretty pleased with 1:38′.”

Royal Parks Half Marathon

One of London’s biggest half marathons proves it is possible to find a picturesque route through even the most built up of cities, just by stitching together different bits of park land. In this case, the route includes Hyde Park, Green Park, St. James’s Park and Kensington Gardens. Read on to see what some members of the Herd thought of it.

Fiona Jessica Wilson

“Lovely to bump into Goats at the Royal Parks Half yesterday! My first half marathon and once again I was so overwhelmed by the loveliness and support of this running community. Was a bit of a crazy day as I had to sing a spot of opera in the evening at a variety show up in Suffolk. Legs fine today – lungs a little bit challenged! Have a fabulous week goats.”

Gayle Tempest

“Royal Parks half today. Such a great run – fab course and loads of support from everyone, including the Extinction Rebellion folk and police at Trafalgar Square! Only spotted 2 other Goats today, but perhaps there were lots in disguise.”

Sofia Marathon

The Herd was even represented in Bulgaria at the Sofia Marathon.

Graydon Widdicombe

Sofia Marathon done yesterday, for my 71st marathon.

It’s a lovely city, the food is great and the people really friendly. The marathon only cost around £25 including a medal, shirt and nice sports bag. Bargain! Compare that to Berlin that I did the other week, and it is really very affordable (Berlin is approx €160 with a shirt).

The course itself was a two-lapper and apart from roughly 5K per lap around the main city, not the most scenic, but it was a good day out on warm conditions (temperature rose to 25C).

As for me, I was on a for a reasonable time for me (I’m usually very pleased if I go sub-3:30′) but a hip issue at 9-miles made it a long slog. I seriously considered dropping out at half way, but as it was OK to walk I carried on. With some walking and some running I got a sub-4 with a 3:55’58” so I’m very happy with that in the circumstances. Here’s how not to pace a sub-4 though!

So if someone is look for a flat, fast, affordable autumn marathon in a great city, this is a great one.

Anyway, another one done. Onto the next one next week, all being well, presuming the hip is manageable.”

It’s not all about organised events

Many of us love a medal and get excited chasing PBs or running in new events, but some of the best runs are the ones we do solo with no cheering crowds.

Jennie Miller, who ran the half marathon distance for the first time

“First half marathon [HM] distance training run! Decided that as my HM next month (Grand Union Canal) is pretty flat, and where I live is very hilly, it would be a good idea to get the bus to a nearby cycle route that runs along a disused railway. It was a gorgeous day for it and a lovely route.

If only I had gone a touch faster, I wouldn’t have just missed the bus home and be waiting half an hour for the next one!”

Part of Jennie Miller’s training run, October 2019

Feeling inspired?

Has this given you an urge to enter an event – or try something new with your running – but you’re not sure of how best to go about it? If so, head to the Facebook Chat Group or the discussions area of the Strava Group. There’s a whole community of runners who will be more than happy to give you some advice and point you in the right direction. Just make sure to let us know how you get on.

Until next time

That’s it for the 17th edition of goats on the run. Congratulations to all the runners mentioned, plus all those we missed. As always, if you’ve achieved something in your running that you’re particularly proud of – completing an event or otherwise – feel free to let us know about it in the Facebook Chat Group or use the #lonelygoatrc and #lonelygoatrunningclub hashtags on Instagram.

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