The Dangers of Over Training

I have already made my views known about how young athletes need to develop carefully and gradually over many years in order to reach their potential as a senior athlete.

This week’s Athletics Weekly has an important and sobering article that all athletes and, particularly, the parents of junior athletes need to read. Bobby Clay was an outstanding junior athlete who was 4th in the World Youth 1500m, won the European Junior 1500m and was 7th in the World Junior 1500m.

She describes how over-training as a junior led to serious health problems in her early 20s.

Please read this Athletics Weekly article carefully.

My earlier comments of the development of young athletes and also the dangers of the Parkrun can be found here: Basic Principles and Parkrun.


British Athletics Cross Challenge and European Trials, Sefton Park, Liverpool

Saturday 25 November 2017

Andy Heyes battled strongly over a very muddy  and strength-sapping course at Sefton Park to finish 11th in 31:07 in the SM race. Pete Hodges enjoyed the conditions more than most, finishing 172nd in 37:22 with Craig Fishwick 226th in 39:36.

Hannah Whitelam ran strongly in the SW race to finish 130th in 35:18.

In the U20M race, Cameron Bell worked hard to come home in 31st in 22:23.

Imani Wilson, representing the North, was 90th in 17:45.

David Lewis, recovering from illness, was 91st in 21:43 in the U17M race.


Jodie Wins English Schools XC Cup Final, Sevenoaks, Kent

Saturday 25 November 2017

Jodie Hill produced an outstanding performance to winch IG English Schools cross country cup final. Jodie held of the chasing group in a close finish to win in 10:21. Holly Booker and Tatti Wilson helped Tapton School to 19th overall, finishing 44th and 108th respectively.

Sheffield Schools Cross Country League 3, Bradfield

Saturday 18 November 2017

Jodie Hill won the IG race convincingly on a very testing course at Bradfield School. Holly Booker ran another very good race to take 2nd with May Quinn, who continues to get stronger with each each, in 5th.

Saskai Huxham showed good strength to go with her speed in winning the SG race.

Clinton Hoo made a rare appearance at cross country, finishing 3rd in the SB race.

Taylor Hill opened up a winning lead early in the IB race with Joe McDadd also looking very strong in 2nd place.

Zena Hartley did very well to win a tough JG race, coming through strongly on the final sections of the course. Emily Hunter was involved in a close race just behind, being edged out to 5th in a sprint for the line.

Dylan Stevens made light work of a very difficult course to win the JB race with a fine run.


South Yorkshire XC League 3, Penistone

Sunday 19 November 2017

Tom Horton looked very strong in winning the senior men’s race in 32:53 on a tough course at Penistone. Tom moved away from Mike Tanner (Sheffield RC) and Sam Sommerville (UoS) on the final lap to win by 30 seconds. John Birch ran very well to take 9th in 34:56 with Carl Edgell 28th in 38:22, Mat Payne 38th in 39:15, Mike Sprot 39th in 39:17 and Craig Fishwick 52nd in 40:36.

Lauren Stoddard, running as a guest, moved through the senior women’s field on the final lap to finish 2nd in 22:20 just edging out Zanthe Wray in 3rd in 22:22 and Hannah Fletcher 6th in 22:30. Charlotte Ward was 8th in 22:38 and Rachel Poole 41st in 26:59.

Laura Trask was a convincing winner of the U17W race in 15:11.

In the U15B race, Sam Tierney (SheffTriC) ran well to finish 14th in 14:51 just ahead of Tom Atkinson in 16th in 14:57 and Jonah Patton 18th in 15:00.

Ffion Patton continued her improvement, finishing 10th in 12:29 in a strong U13G race.

Photos available here.

British Athletics Cross Challenge 2, Milton Keynes

Saturday 11 November 2017

The course at Tear Drop Lakes for the second of the British Athletics Cross Challenge series was flat and fast with a few steep banks. In the leading group after a fast opening 1k, Cameron Bell did well to recover from a bad spiking on both legs and revive in the second half of the race to finish 15th in 19:19.

Photos available here.

National Cross Country Relay Championships, Berry Hill Park, Mansfield

Saturday 4 November 2017

Overnight rain softened the course but the surface still produced a fast surface for the national cross country relay championships.

The senior men finished 48th. Connor Milnes, recovering from illness, led the team off in 66th in 1:20.40. Pete Hodges was 64th in 18:10.25 with Nick Barbour moving through to 52nd in 17:40.65 and John Birch brought the team home in 48th in 17:25.65.

Natalia Hackett opened for the Senior Women’s A team, finishing 28th 10:43.85. Zanthe Wray produced a strong run to move to 19th with a time of 10:51.60. Hannah Fletcher led the team home in 16th in 11:07.80.

Evie Brailsford ran well on the opening leg for the B team, coming home 34th in 10:56.25. Ellie Crownshaw was 37th in 12:02.80 and Charlotte Slack finished 36th in 11:53.60.

Hannah Whitelam ran a lone leg for the C team, finishing 57th in 11:53.55.

Cameron Bell was our only U20M but produced the individual performance of the day to take 4th on the opening leg in 8:59.70 and 6th fastest time of the day.

Mary McCarthy led off the incomplete U20W team, finishing 35th in 10:03.20 with Lexie Wilson 34th on the 2nd leg in 10:45.45.

David Lewis, our only U17M, produced another consistent run to take 48th in 10:02.95.

The U17W team ran consistently well to finish 7th. Saskia Huxham was 9th on a very competitive opening leg in 9:14.74. Eve Crownshaw ran well to take 8th in 9:33.70 and Laura Trask produced another strong run to bring the team how in 7th in 9:29.65.

The U15B A team ran well to finish 8th with Taylor Hill running 6:40:70 on the opening leg for 14th. Joe McDadd ran a good final leg to finish 8th in 6:54.80.

Dylan Stevens was 66th in 7:31.60 on the 2nd leg for the B team with Jonah Patton 70th on the final leg in 7:54.75.

Jodie Hill gave the U15G A team a good start in 13th in 7:23.05. Holly Booker was 18th in 8:15.65 on the 2nd leg.

Zena Hartley led off the B team, running well to take 47th in 7:54.75. Tatti Wilson was 60th on the 2nd leg in 8:43.75.

Emily Hunter anchored the C team to 44th with a time of 8:26.65.

Photos available here.


Northern Athletics Cross Country Relay Championships, Graves Park

Saturday 21 October 2017

There were a number of very good individual and team performances at the Northern cross country relays despite the strong winds and soft conditions under foot.

A very young men’s A team finished just outside the medals in 4th place. Tom Horton got them off to a very good start, finishing quickly in 3rd in 10:32 (5th fastest time of the day). Cameron Bell ran a strong leg to hold on to 3rd in 10:53. Josh Taylor-Brown moved up to 2nd with a time of 10:52. Connor Milnes ran well despite a heavy cold to take 4th in 11:30.

Pete Hodges ran the fastest leg for the B team, finishing 40th in 11:54. Josh Walton surprised himself moving up to 37th with 12:23. Rob Cook maintained the position with 12:50 and Dave Sprot led the team home in 33rd with 12:12.

It was very encouraging to see a large turn out by the Senior Women. The A team emulated the men’s performance with 4th place. Imani Wilson ran a fine opening leg to finish 7th  in 12:21 (the 9th fastest time of the day). Zanthe Wray gained five places to finish 2nd in 12:36. Charlotte Ward was involved in a close struggle over the final leg, finishing 4th in 13:03.

Hannah Fletcher got the B team off to a good start, finishing 13th in 12:41. Evie Brailsford looked very strong, running 13:21 in 11th. Ellie Crownshaw ran a good final leg to finish 13th in 14:08.

Lexie Wilson was the lead leg for the C team, finishing 44th in 14:47. Charlotte Slack moved up to 30th with 13:41 and Hannah Whitelam gained a further 7 places to finish 23rd in 14:16.

The D team were led off by Tina Wilson in 62nd in 16:56. Sarah Booker gained 8 places to finish 54th in 17:15. Maggie Quinn led the team home in 53rd in 19:41.

David Lewis ran strong opening leg for the U17M with a promising time of 7:39. Christian Snelgrove finished 16th on the final leg in 8:30.

The U17W team finished 5th with some strong runs. Laura Trask ran a very good opening leg to finish 4th in 8:37, the 9th fastest time of the day. Eve Crownshaw ran well to take 5th in 9:02. Saskia Huxham maintained the position to bring the team home in 5th in 8:50.

The U15B A team ran extremely well to win the Northern title. Taylor Hill got them off to an excellent start, finishing in a scramble for the line in 6th, the 7th fastest time of the day. James Hartley ran a very strong middle leg to take the lead with 7:26. Joe McDadd never looked like relinquishing the lead, running 7:22 (the 9th fastest time of the day) to clinch the gold medal.

Dylan Stevens ran well on the opening leg for the B team, finishing 30th in 8:00. Jonah Patton brought the team home in 27th on the final leg in 8:52.

The U15G team finished 5th. Jodie Hill ran another good opening leg to take 5th in 8:08, the 6th fastest time of the day. Zena Hill continued her return to form finishing 4th on the 2nd leg in 8:50.

Holly Booker opened for the B team running 8:43 for 12th. Tatti Wilson moved the team up to 8th with a time of 9:03. May Quinn ran well to finish 15th in 9:40.

Ffion Patton ran well on the 2nd leg for the U13G C team, finishing 14th in 6:52.

Photos available here.