Our typical 'club runs' start 6.30 on club nights and tend to finish round about 8pm, the stadium being manned until around 9pm. After reviewing how the groups are organised we currently assemble around 6.15 onwards and form appropriate groups from thre runners present (that'r not as obvious as it seems- the make-up of abilities and/or requirements can vary quite markedly from one club night to anoither).
There will probably be a group of runners who have not been running long, and at the pother extreme a number who can and do run quite quick. (for comparison only: 30-minute 5k times down to around 18 minutes). And in-between maybe one, maybe two depending.
The differences in what the groups will do are basically (and not surprisingly) these:
1: running slowly with frequent stops for around 4-5 miles
2: a bit quicker still with plenty of stops but up to 7 miles
3: sharpish from the start and 7-8 miles or more
Every group which leaves the stadium needs an identified leader. There are several good reasons for this- but one of them is that we are describing a formally insured club activity.
More, and different, leaders are always welcome- it is no-ones right and privelige to be leader. The ideal requirements are:
• to be a current full member
• to know and recognise all the runners in the relevant group (or when necessary to establish the identity of them)
• to be aware of any applicable medical issues among the runners
• to ensure that no runner is allowed to drop out of the run (unless they announce their intention, when it becomes their own responsibility)
• to be capable of running near the front of the group or to co-operate with someone who is
• to know enough detail of districts, paths, road, terrain and difficulty so as to provide an appropriate, useful and interesting route
It is not unusual for members to fall between one and another group in capability (or to feel that they do). The answer is either to swap between groups from time to time and assess, or to realise that on occasions groups are slower or quicker than usual due to different personnel. Group leaders should be proactive in these cases.
Whereas slower groups will tend to avoid hilly terrain, the faster ones tend to seek them out. Their runs are often equivalent to interval training in consequence.
Also, because the runs are further (and somewhat faster) the quicker runs tend to access more rural areas and over a wider area. Especially in spring, summer and autumn of course.
In winter, it's all a question of using well-lt roads.
Some often-used options are described here