UK Run 5 : Southampton

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Date : 8th October, 2018

Time : 59’ 23”

Number of runners (total to date) : 45 (2526)

Total distance run to date : 1560 km internationally + 50 km in the UK

Run map and details :

I was chatting to Gil after the run when the thought popped into my head, “Everyone’s English has been surprisingly good this evening.”

And then I realised that this was hardly unexpected. Because the run had been in Southampton. On the south coast of England.

I shouldn’t have been so disorientated as there’d been plenty of clues that I was now back in the UK after 7 runs in South West Africa and Portugal. It had been cool unlike, say, Gabon or the Democratic Republic of Congo. And the humidity levels had been low unlike, say, Sao Tome. And I’d been able to drive to the meeting point…

Which was at the Feather in the Woolston Memorial Garden in the shadow of the Itchen Bridge.

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There were 45 of us at the start – 44 members of the Itchen Spitfires Running Club and me. And they were all good enough to join me for the start of the run before we split into two groups. Some to do the club’s planned training session that evening – a 2 mile timed run – and some to do the 10km run.

For the 10kers amongst us, Tash led the run out along the north shore of Southampton Water, stopping briefly to take a picture of White Star Dock (later Ocean Dock) which is where the Titanic’s ill-fated voyage began. A tragedy that affected Southampton more than anywhere else in the world with more than 500 households losing a family member.

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From there we ran as far as Royal Victoria Country Park

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Before heading back to the Feather, passing close to Netley Abbey on the way. (At least that’s what the map tells me ; it was a little dark for sightseeing by this stage.)

There were plenty of good chats as we ran. Here are a few highlights which I hope my fellow runners won’t mind me sharing :

“I’m not pregnant ; that’s an asthma kit under my running top.”

“It’s not a good idea to run round the Isle of Wight ; I’ve done it and it’s a very hilly, 70 mile nightmare.”

“Do you know what old rock stars, the likes of the Stones and the Who, talk about when they get together?”

I also talked to a COPD nurse who told me that inhaling anything – a joint ; a wood fire ; cooking fumes – can damage you and cause cancer. In other words, it’s not just cigarettes ; a point I must remember to stress next time I’m giving a Run the World healthy living talk. (By coincidence there was an article on exactly this issue in today’s newspaper.)

I think you’ve got the idea by now : it was a great run with great people. Thank you to Gil and everyone at the Itchen Spitfires Running Club for the welcome and the company. I very much hope to see you all in London on July 4th 2020 for the UK (and final) leg of Run the World!

If you’d like to help fight cancer then I and, far more importantly, cancer sufferers around the world, would be immensely grateful for any donations to Cancer Research :

Please like / follow Run the World on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter because it would be great to stay in touch and because, however silly it may sound, it makes all the travel and running that little bit easier if you think people care!


About Run the World

I'm running 10 km in every country in the world - a total of 205 countries - by the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. I'm doing the Run the World challenge to promote the benefits of sport and physical activity and to raise money for cancer research following the death of my mother from cancer. If you'd like to donate to Cancer Research - - then I know they'd be very grateful.
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