Fitmums & Friends

Fitmums & Friends

Fitmums & Friends is a running club based in Cottingham but with branches throughout Hull, bringing friendly, supportive exercise to women and men across the city. The grant enabled Fitmums to put four volunteers through the Leadership in Running Fitness course (provided by England Athletics) and thereby create a team to start a Fitmums & Friends branch in East Hull. The grant also enabled the group to produce some flyers to promote the new run sessions. East Hull is now the fourth Fitmums run group in East Yorkshire and is part of the wider Fitmums network, which also includes two buggy burn sessions, a walking group, a scheme to support women with post-natal depression and a junior branch of Fitmums for children aged and over.

East Hull co-ordinator Nikki Dunlop said, ‘On the first night I was completely blown away by how many people turned up and I was fortunate enough to take out the 1 mile group, who were fantastic. Such a fun bunch of women. In the group there were women who hadn't run since school in some cases and once they realised they'd just run their first mile, they were ecstatic, and so was I! They loved the supportive shepherding system and most of them managed to chat and laugh all the way round the route. In the four weeks that we have been going, we have seen such amazing transformations from the ladies running to the 1 mile right the way through to people stepping up to run 5 miles.

‘Each week new members keep turning up and we have gone from 34 in the first week to 49 by week four. The feedback we are getting is fantastic! All different ability levels have joined, from women who have done nothing at all in terms of fitness, to women who are entering 10k races and want to improve their running. In each case though, all of them have said how great it is to run in a group. Some of them run regularly on their own, or try to, but have found that running as a group with like-minded people who encourage and support them, has just made it so much easier.

‘I've also had people asking if we can do another night or if I'd support them in doing a park run on a weekend. This is where we need to identify some potential new run leaders and get them through the course so that we can support the group as it grows.’