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NJ Trail Cross Country Summer Series 5k

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 I ran a 5k in my hometown in incredibly sunny and hot June weather. Jumping American in America. Why NJ Trail Cross Country 5k I like to run races when visiting my family. The Cross Country 5k was the one I came across with the most convenient time and location for my visit. I also liked that it took place in my hometown, though I had never actually been to the park the race was held it. The race The route and conditions The race was held at Central Park of Morris County, which is a big sports complex with fields of every sort. Surrounding the park is a cross country course. The route started in an open field and then went into trails. Most of the race was in the shade, which was very welcome seeing as it was 78F by the end of the race (and this was at night!). The open field at the start of the race. The ankle timer With it being so hot, I wasn't particularly keen on the chip timing for this race. It was a thick band that wrapped around your ankle. I've had ankle chip-timing

Edinburgh Half Marathon

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I ran the hardest I've ever run at the Edinburgh Half Marathon and ended up with a new PB race time of 2:07:10. Got USA shoes for my USA running outfit. Why Edinburgh Half I was meant to run the Edinburgh Half in 2020. It obviously got canceled due to Covid, so I decided to attempt it now that it was back on. For a course in Edinburgh, it's actually pretty downhill or flat most of the way, so I was hoping this would be a chance to get a half marathon PB. The journey This is the first local race where I actually walked to the start! It was just over 30 minutes to walk, so I figured that would be a good warm-up for my legs. It didn't take long before I was passing other runners making their way to the start as well. Then came the caravan of cars dropping runners off. Pretty soon it was people, people everywhere. I've done 2 large-scale races in the Covid world, but this is the first one that felt genuinely packed to the brim. The crowded baggage queue The packed-to-the-br

My first Parkrun

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After 4 years of running, I finally participated in my first Parkrun event at Portobello. Ready to Parkrun. Why Parkrun I normally use this blog to recap races and challenges, but I figured participating in my first Parkrun is something to note.  I assumed Parkrun was something I'd try at some point, I just didn't know when.  One of my main reasons for not trying any in Edinburgh all this time was that they were really inconvenient for me to get to, especially pre-pandemic when I didn't have a bike. However, my running friend AnThony suggested going to one together for a catch up, so I thought now was the time. I chose Portobello as it was the easiest for me to cycle to.  A 3-lap course The Portobello course is 3 laps of Figgate Park, so as far as routes go, it's not the most interesting one in the world, especially as I've run through the park before.  Figgate Park. But I was really impressed with how well-organized a local, free run is and how many people voluntee

Scurry Along the Esk 10 miles

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I ran my first race of 2022, 10 miles along the River Esk through stunning trails. Starting off 2022 with a trail race. Why Scurry Along the Esk I started following Scurry Events on social media after I did Scurry to the Sea last July.  Scurry to the Sea race recap I saw this race come up and was intrigued by the route and location. It started at Roslin Glen Country Park which I've been to quite a few times before, but went through trails I had never been on. It seemed like a good local race to try out. The journey I don't normally have anything interesting to say about how to I get to local races. But this one was of note because it was the first race I cycled to.  Cycling over Bilston Viaduct. And it was a scenic cycle at that. Most of the route there was through the cycle path along the bypass, which has some pretty, rural views along the way. It was also a rather hilly cycle to be immediately followed by a 10 mile run. And then a cycle back. I basically did an inverse duath

My 2021: a year of running challenges for JCWI

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I spent 2021 doing a monthly running challenge in support of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI). I reflect on the fundraiser and the most memorable challenges. 2021 running challenges in pictures. Reaching our £12,700 goal My fundraising buddy Thia set the goal of raising £12,700 for JCWI in 2021. This is what families have to pay for a non-British spouse to go through the UK immigration system, from the first visa application, to British citizenship, with legal fees. It was an intimidating amount of money to fundraise, but that was the point. £12,700 is a grossly inhumane figure to charge families to be able to live in the UK, just because one partner does not have British citizenship. I'm happy to report that after a year of fundraising, Thia and I have reached our goal. At the time of writing, our fundraiser is at £13,762.  We had a bit of help, though. Our £12,700 figure is the combination of money we individually fundraised, and what JCWI fundraised through

December 2021 challenge: American running

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While visiting my family in the US, I tried out some new routes and races to make my December running interesting.  Fundraising for JCWI in 2021 This is the 12th recap post of my 2021 monthly running challenges. These challenges are part of my fundraiser for the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI).  Read my blog post on why I'm doing this fundraiser My previous recaps Donate to my JustGiving page Recapping the horrors of UK immigration each month As part of my fundraising efforts, I am also raising awareness about what's happening in the world of UK immigration each month. I want people to understand just how much awfulness happens in 28 to 31 days. My recaps will be over on my Medium site. How the UK immigration system hurts people: November 2021 Why American running It's not a physical challenge like running every day or running a marathon was. But rather than stick to runs in the US I've done before, I tried to make sure I was running in new and exciti