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2011 Achievements

Southwater - 6th February 2011

On 06.02.11, 18 Cranleigh Sunflowers ran from Cranleigh To Southwater.  It was approx 11.5 miles along the South Downs Railway Link. Lisette, Sarah, Sarah, Sara, Laura, Melissa, Sharon, Julia, Julie, Beccy, Louise, Deryn, Kirsty, Claire, Kelly and myself all met at the Co-op car park at 9.45 am to start our run. We were also joined by Becky and Karen on bikes, Debbie in car support and Chris for directions and support with the runners. The weather was a bit windy and cold, there was also damp in the air but it didn't rain and the cold soon went after running for about a mile!
 
At about 10am we started on our journey. We all stayed together for a while and just eased into the task ahead.  Becky and Karen did a fantastic (and very funny) job cycling behind us all and then going backwards and forwards between us all offering drinks and jelly babies. They also had a go at taking photos but we went passed to quickly!!  Debbie and Kevin also met us just near Rudgewick at the point were we had to cross the A281. This was really great as they handed out drinks, food and support. By this time we all needed it!
 
The next marker was when we crossed a small road. This was at Slinfold, we were half way! We had splinted into smaller groups but we were all still going and there was no turning back for any of us, we were all going to finish. Run, jog, walk or cycle we were all going to get to the end! And we were still laughing.  Karen got a puncture 3 miles from the end, so she dumped her bike and got into the spirit of things and started running.  We passed the Bax Castle, Christ Hospital and then Southwater Village was in site.  By the time we all got back other Sunflowers, partners, kids and even dogs met us! And it was a welcome sight.
 
There were lots of tears. The achievement for everyone was unbelievable. We all had our own reasons for doing it. Our own goals and targets to get to, and we all did it. It was a fantastic morning out. The sense of pride, relief, joy, anguish, achievement, fun, pain and so many more feelings were felt by everyone. The runners, cyclists, support cars, friends and  families all felt it.  After everyone was back and changed into warmer clothes we all sat down for a well deserved cuppa and slice of cake. We all told our stories of the things that had happened along the way. We laughed and cried but we did it together, as a team, as part of the Cranleigh Sunflowers team.
 
Thank You to everyone that helped on the day, without your support we would have missed a vital part of our team.  Congratulation and well done to all.
 
I am feel very proud to have done this run and every run that i do with Sunflowers. If it is a training night, 5k, 10k, 11.5 miles and more, all the runs are so important and for so many different reasons. Everyone has a target and we are all here to help and get to those targets.
 
I am now looking forward to this years "Race for Life" 5k. This will be the first time some of our ladies will have run this far and is a very important race to do for all of us. This will be the first race for some, and the start of many ........ hopefully.
 
Long many it continue. Long may we continue.

Cranleigh 15/21 - 20th March 2011

Well done to Sara, Laura, Kelly, Sharon, Julie and Julia for completeing this years Cranleigh 15 / 21. I found this a hard run this year and you all kept me going so thankyou all.
 
It was a big field today with about 1000 people taking part. People use this run for pre marathon training. I was so pleased to have 7 Sunflowers in that and more Sunflowers marshalling and supporting. I feel that we really put Cranleigh Sunflowers on the map with all of the other clubs that ran today. Whilst out in the field, as they ran past us they were all cheering "Go On Cranleigh Sunflowers!"
 
It is a nice run but there are a few hills in it. Everyone is very friendly and helpfull though and to have support when you go round just makes it all so much more rewarding.
 
The marshalling and support from all of you was fantastic and hopefully there will be some more of us doing it again next year.
 
Congratulations again all you did Cranleigh Sunflowers proud. And a big congtars to all of you that ran and completed your first 15 miler! Well done.

Help for Heroes - 12th June 2011
I would just like to say thank you to everyone that helped us and made 1000 miles in a day most memorable. Thank you also to all the well wishes and the people that have donated and came down to support.
 
This email is to let you all know that ....... WE DID IT! 1083.2 Miles!!!! Despite the appalling rain 141 people turned up and did over 1000 Miles in a day for Help for Heroes! Congratulations to everyone.
 
I don't have a final target of how much was raised but it will be in the region of £2500.00! I will let you know the exact total as soon as i have it.
 
Thank you to all of the children that took part, they were amazing and some of them did more than 1 mile each! Thank you also to Tortoise and Hare, Cranleigh Runners. 13 ran the 44.5 miles back from Charing cross, and picked up another 2 half way!! Also a big thank you to my Cranleigh Sunflowers (for making it all come true) and to all of the other people that came out in the wind and the rain to run and make the day so fantastic.
 
Thank you too to Cranleigh Scouts, Cranleigh Fire Brigade, Cranleigh Police, St Andrews Cricket Club, St Johns Ambulance, First class faces, Tony Fresko's, and Cranfold Physio for being there on the day. Without all of you the day wouldn't have been such a success.
 
There were also 32 prizes donated. Thank you to everyone that was also involved with that as well.
 
This experience was a pleasure to do and we all enjoyed most minutes of it. It was inspired by our friend Chris Finill and his friend Steve Pope, who are going to run across America this year! 3200 Miles in approx 75 days!!! We all wish you the very best of luck and look forward to tracking your progress along the way. This will also be in aid of Help for Heroes. Please go to www.runacrossamerica.co.uk for further details.
 
Many, many thanks again to all involved.

 
Race for Life - 18th June 2011

Congratulations to Sioned, Tara, Hayley, Sue, Judy, Sharon, Kate and Kates daughter for completing Guildfords Race for Life 5k run.
 
As we approached Stoke Road, Guildford the rain came down. It stopped at about 1.45pm just before the run was due to start. There were about 3500 women taking part in the run and we were near the front as runners!
We were all back before the rain started again! All of us were back within 40 minutes, and we ran most of the way.
This is a fantastic achievement being that some ladies only started at Cranleigh Sunflowers a few months ago and said "I can't run!"
 
Others that have been with Sunflowers a while did get Pb's which is also fantastic.
 
We all did something amazing on Saturday irrespective of time and weather and we all really enjoyed ourselves.
 
Race for Life is always a great run to do your first race. The atmosphere and camaraderie is brilliant, and we are raising money and awareness at the same time.


Southwater - 4th September 2011

As my husband looks out if the window at 7am he says, "Oh, look its raining, must be a Sunflowers running day!". This is true and he wasn't the only one to mention this! But that's what sets the Sunflowers far apart from everyone else .......... we are not fair weather runners, the rain will not dampen our spirits, and we are going to do this!! Rain? What rain?

Tara, Becky, Hayley, Auntie Joan, Debbie and Jo were going to run the 11.5 miles to Southwater whatever, they had all been working so hard to get to this date and nothing was going to put them off! Sara was with the front runners, Sharon the middle and myself at the back. 

We also had Melissa at the front on a bike, Kate at the back on a bike and Linda met us every 3ish miles in her car. The 3 of them were carrying water, energy drinks, mars bars, jelly babies, phones but most of a support, and a smile.

We all started off together and then over time we split into groups. The groups were only a few minutes apart the whole way so we kept each other in sight. 

The run was split into 4 sections so that the car could meet us and the girls could break it down rather than thinking 'eeekkkkk 11.5 miles'. Also this gave others the chance to join in if they wanted to. The first section was about 4.5 miles, then, 2.2 miles, 2.2 miles, and lastly 3.2 miles. 

The rain even managed to stay away until the last section of the run. By then it was a welcome sight.

Everyone completed it! And they say they all enjoyed it too!! Debbie hasn't run that far for 15 years, and Hayley has never been that far! And the others at some point or another have said that they can't run!! I ask you!! Linda was recruiting people to Sunflowers on the way round and I think Melissa may enjoy running rather than getting saddle sore!!

At Southwater we were met by some family members and friends which was lovely and then we went for a well deserved cuppa and in some cases, a slice of cake!

The Downs Link is a really lovely route and we are so lucky to have it right on our doorstep. It is also fairly flat which is also lovely.

Thank you so much to everyone that took part and supported. Without you guys we wouldn't be able to do this.

Congratulations a great achievement, well done to all of you.


Christmas Drinks & Fun Run - 12th December 2011
Rain again! Still that didn't stop Cranleigh Sunflowers from running their 10k Christmas fun run. We met at Lucy's to start the run. Our friend Paul McGuinness had kindly gone out and laid flour around the course that we were going to take. At 9.45 am we left Lucy's and walked up to the start of the run. Whoop Whoop it had stopped raining!  At 10 am Julie, Oggie, Sally, Sarah, Sharon, Helen, Angela, Becky, Elly, Hayley, Catherine , Debbie, T, Alli, Sue, Judy and Debbie Mc all started their run. Melissa was in tow in the car (just in case!) and also to take some photos of the ladies as they ran around Cranleigh.

The route took them on some roads, through some fields, on to the disused railway line and then back onto the roads. It is a really lovely run with a bit of something for everyone. This is the run that we would like to train as many of the ladies to do as possible. 10k (6.2) miles (although it ends up being 6.5 miles, but don't tell anyone that!) is no mean feat especially if you are a beginner or haven't run for a long time. Also there is no pressure as its a fun run and as always everyone is there to support, help but most of all to enjoy it and share the experience with each other.

We are proud to say that they all completed it and they all came back smiling! Some of our ladies did PB's and for some it was their first official 10k. But for what ever reason you got those trainers on that morning, you were all fantastic. Congratulations ladies from all of us. You really are inspirational and amazing. 

"Be proud of how far you have come. Have faith in how far you will go."


Christmas Drinks

We don't run the evening of the fun run we have our Achiever of the Year Award and christmas drinks. This is a great night for everyone. It's lovely to see so many of the ladies and actually be able to chat to them without puffing and panting! Its a chance to catch up with people that you don't normally run with, or that haven't been for a while or that are injured.

Angela, Sharon, Kirsty, Sarah, Debbie Mc, Holly, Becky C, Sally, Melissa, T, Debbie, Elly, Julia, Alli, Sara, Judy, Tara, Oggie, Becky A, Milli, Catherine, Sue, Linda, Heather, Kate, Hayley (Achiever of the Year) and myself were there to celebrate all of our  achievements over the last year.  I have to give a speech on this night and every time I cry!  I cry because each and every person that joins the club, joins for a different reason and they all bring something new and special to Cranleigh Sunflowers.  I am proud of each and every one of them. 2011 has been a fantastic year for all involved.

We started the year with our Southwater run - 11.5 miles. This is for seasoned Sunflowers or people that have been training for a while. This was the followed by Cranleigh 15/21. On the evening after the race we then had a pizza and quiz night. We then had a really random night that was my hen night! All out for the 80's! The next day we were all back to the business of running and did a scavenger hunt around the village. We then completed our "Help for Heroes" in June, raising £3500 by running 1000 miles in a day with our freinds from Tortoise and Hare.  Also in June some or our newest members completed their first race that was Race for Life in Guildford's Stoke Park. July bought us the Cranleigh 10k. August we had a curry night at Hurtwood Polo Club and in September we did the Southwater run again and some took part in the Denbys half marathon. October there was Barns Green half marathon and the Great South Run followed by Gosport half marathon in early November and in December there was the Grim. A very busy year!

During the year we also got short listed for "Womens Running Group of the Year" which was run by Womens Running Magazine and New Balance. We also managed 4 marriages and 4 babies within the group aswell! As you can see we are not all just about running.

The committee over the year have to choose someone that is who we think deserves to win our "Achiever of the Year Award" donated and presented by Chris Finill. This is a really hard thing to do as over the year many people achieve so many different things. Special reconitition went to Becky Ambrose, Debbie Sampson, Kate Mason, Hayley Ash, Tara Bolton, Kirsty Ketley, Alli Greene and Sally Terson as they have achieved so much in the time that they have been with Sunflowers, whether its been a year, 6 months or 4 months they have been remarkable. From doing their first 10k to a half marathon.....amazing.

Thank you to all of you that came, we all had a great night. Thank you also to the people that wrote comments in the book. They will be published shortly!


"Be proud of how far you have come. Have faith in how far you will go."

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