I had been running for 8 years before I decided to join a club. After a glowing recommendation from a friend I decided to give Penarth & Dinas Runners a go. Having just deferred a place in the London Marathon due to injury I decided that I needed to take my running seriously and train properly. Every member of the club was extremely friendly and encouraging from the very first session. All sessions have a purpose and within a couple of years I had taken minutes off PBs and over half an hour off my marathon time. The Club Championship gives great motivation to push yourself throughout the year and there is always some friendly rivalry without the feeling of pressure. For the hardy there is the opportunity to represent the club in the Gwent League Cross Country League and the Welsh Castles Relay. A fantastic club to be a part of!
I've been a runner for over forty years, and have dabbled with everything from 800 metres on the track up to Ultra Marathon Trail races. I moved to Barry when I retired in 2017 and was keen to join a local club and start competing again on the road and at cross country. I met up with Penarth & Dinas Runners on a Monday night training session, and instantly knew it was the right club for me....everyone really friendly & welcoming, and a great range of abilities, all very supportive of each other. Before I knew it I was racing again, and I was very proud to represent the Club at the unique and epic Welsh Castles Relay. I've also started volunteering at the local parkrun on Barry Island, which many Club members are involved with, and I've helped at some of the races P & D organise. I've been a member of about ten clubs since I started running and I can honestly say Penarth & Dinas Runners is up there on the podium!
I had done a bit of recreational running with my son and on my own for some years before joining a club. I was always too intimidated to join as I thought all the members would be top elite athletes and I would not be able to keep up. How wrong I was! The Club members gave me a lovely warm welcome and the sessions suit all ages and abilities. Their enthusiasm is infectious and no matter what level of ability you are at, the sessions are achievable and valuable. Fartlek, tempo runs, hills..... these terms are no longer frightening! The members are friendly, super sociable and the Club also hosts many social events and extra ad hoc sessions throughout the whole week if you want to do more, or run with a group. Competitions, races, cross country, social jog ... P&D cater for all, and membership fees are minimal.
I was initially a bit nervous about joining a running club, but I had nothing to worry about at Penarth and Dinas Runners; everyone were extremely friendly and welcoming. The training sessions are varied and well-planned and everyone supports each other. Since joining my running has definitely improved and I'm looking forward to representing the Club at future races!