Ladies get running to improve fitness

The South Ribble Runners at Leyland Leisure Centre
The South Ribble Runners at Leyland Leisure Centre
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Leyland is leading the way in a bid to get more women running this January.

A 100-strong group of women known as the South Ribble Runners are welcoming new members at a beginner’s session tonight (Wednesday).

South Ribble Council, which supports the group, has also invested in new equipment at Leyland Leisure Centre, to get more people fit and active this new year.

The all-women group, which has been ‘running’ in one form or another for the past 10 years, is starting the beginner sessions from the leisure centre to help people stick to those ‘must exercise more’ resolutions.

Chairman and coach Alison Evans said: “We have three sessions a week for mixed levels, and some of our more advanced runners are training for the marathon.

“The programmes aim to improve people’s fitness and encourage them to get healthy and active.

“It’s also a lot of fun and we’re really part of the community now.

“We even have a Saturday run just for fun!”

Mum-of-two Alison, 43, works as a chef in the Buckshaw Village retirement centre during the day, and has been a coach for South Ribble Runners for the past three years.

There are three main coaches and 10 leaders, and the beginners’ is a 10-week programme aimed at improving fitness.

“It was previously called the Women’s Running Network,” Alison said. “I joined about eight years ago and it’s good to get people together.

“We have a laugh and a chat, and it certainly doesn’t feel like you’re running for an hour.”

The sessions consist of power walking and marching too, and there is one session each week where men can go along.

In another attempt to get the borough fit and healthy, the council has invested £500,000 on improvements at Leyland and Bamber Bridge Leisure Centres.

New state-of-the-art equipment includes Octane cross trainers, treadmills and rowing machines, Power Plate technology and a new facility for lifting heavier weights.

Leyland’s reception has also had a makeover, which allows fast-track entry to reduce waiting times.

- The new South Ribble Runners sessions start tonight at 6.30pm at Leyland Leisure Centre.

Call Alison on 07854 013920 for more information about the group.