Congratulations to Richard Boese, who completed 100 marathons and is our June member of the month! We caught up with him to find out more about him:
1. HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A MEMBER OF SANDHURST JOGGERS: About 10 or 11 years, but when I actually joined is lost in the mists of time. I’m sure Janice would know.
2. WHAT FIRST ATTRACTED YOU TO THE CLUB: Apart from me living in Sandhurst and SJ being the obvious choice, it was initially because there are so many runs laid on during the week to suit all kinds of runners. Then it was the friendly and supportive atmosphere. It’s a club run by and made up of a very encouraging group of people which I find is great motivation to keep running.
3. TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF: I’m 55, born the year England last won anything at football, have a wife and 2 kids, all of whom are at least occasional runners. I work in civil engineering on large infrastructure and flood defence projects as a specialist geotechnical engineer. I started running in 2009 after getting out of breath playing football with my then 5yr old son. I thought I was reasonably fit as I occasionally cycled to work but I was kidding myself. Something had to change, so I started running with a couch to 5k training plan. I discovered parkrun not long after and through that Sandhurst Joggers.
4. WHAT BENEFITS DO YOU FEEL YOU GAIN FROM RUNNING, WITH OR WITHOUT THE CLUB: Well, fitness obviously and a list of injuries as long as your hamstring, so I’m never without something to talk about with other runners. But it’s also a wonderful way of resetting your body and mind and feeling recharged enough to carry on with the stresses of work and life in general. I like how it means I can keep up with my kids and I really notice the positive way it affects my mood.
5. DO YOU TAKE PART IN ANY OTHER SPORTS: Mostly it’s running only, but I did play cricket and football with work teams until the cricket team folded and I got tired of being kicked by clumsy oafs. Now I go through phases of adding cycling and swimming into training depending on how injured I am. My current hobby is going for swims at outdoor pools or wild swimming in rivers and canals. I have swum in several places in the Thames between Reading and Windsor and outdoor pools between Hampton, by Bushy Park and Hilsea near Portsmouth. My next one will be at Arundel where I will try to improve my front crawl without drinking the pool.
6. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE DISTANCE YOU LIKE TO RUN: Should I say marathons? I do quite like marathons as you might have guessed, but I also really like a full English breakfast after a parkrun, so 5k is a favourite and then so is having a stand up picnic after a hard cross-country league race, or any club run with SJ. That makes me sound like I am a chubby Labrador kind of runner – “Will run for snacks” is printed on my race vest. 😊
7. DO YOU ENJOY RACES: Yes, absolutely, and that was really brought home to me when doing my 101st marathon at the Hampshire Hoppit recently – 500 people all lining up to start a race together. That was such a buzz and it really made me realise how long we have been without that and how much I had missed that race start feeling.
8. DO YOU ENJOY / PARTICIPATE IN THE SOCIAL ASPECT OF THE CLUB: Yes, as much as possible and that’s not just because I was Club Chairman. It’s not an obligation if it’s so much fun. SJs are a great bunch of people and it’s fun to get out with a load of like-minded people. My favourites from the last few years are the Ball and the Halloween Run and I really appreciate the time and effort that the Social Committee put in to making these things happen.
9. WHAT ARE YOUR RUNNING ASPIRATIONS: At the moment it’s just regain some fitness and keep enjoying running. If I wanted to put numbers on it, I would say run a parkrun with a 22-something finish time and run a whole marathon without having to walk. As far as other races, I have a small list of marathons I’d like to do including Loch Ness, Tromso and the Jungfrau marathon. Loch Ness would be a club run with a bunch of SJs, Tromso is north of the Arctic Circle so it’s run around midnight in daylight and I hear the Jungfrau run is quite hilly, but has a nice downhill finish (for about 13miles!).
10. IS THERE ANYTHING YOU FEEL THE CLUB COULD IMPROVE: From the Committee point of view, I think they do a great job of running the club and putting on runs and events and making things available for as many runners as possible. What I would like to see is more of our club members joining in with events and stepping up to lead runs. I’m sure there are some people who would like to join in with cross-country runs, summer relays or other events but maybe lack confidence. There’s never any pressure to perform at these things, it’s like being at a club run but with extra fun and picnics.