Running Groups in Edinburgh & the Lothians
For those of you who want to run but not in a competitive way, joining a running group can be an enjoyable route to improving your fitness and having fun. Many running groups are based at specialist running shops or local leisure centres. Best of all jogscotland is Scotland's very own jogging network which uses simple walk/jog/run programmes to encourage everyone to get out and be fit and active.
One such club is Armadale Jolly Joggers..
ARMADALE JOLLY JOGGERS
When she was asked to set up a running group for the Armadale Run 4 Fun event last year, Marie Claire Donnelly didn’t envisage it would still be going a year later. Yet that’s exactly what has happened to the Armadale Jolly Joggers, as Marie Claire tells us: "I was asked to start the running group as part of the Armadale Together for Health campaign in preparation for the local Run 4 Fun. I was happy to do it and after receiving such a positive response decided to keep the group going."
The group has become something of a recruiting ground for jog leaders, Marie Claire explains: "It’s quite a nice story actually. Karen McDonald started as a beginner with us and really took to running. She was great at motivating other people so decided to enrol in the jogscotland leadership course and is now a leader at the Jolly Joggers.
"Another girl, Louise Moffat, is currently putting herself through the leadership course so she will be a jog leader soon. Everyone just enjoys coming along and it’s rewarding seeing how far some of our members have progressed. It’s not just about the running though. We describe it as ‘free therapy’ because you are able to discuss anything with other members and always feel better after doing so."
In addition to jogging, the group enjoys regular nights out: "We definitely have an active social life. You could say we turn from the Jolly Joggers into the Jolly Jakeys! We go to shows at Edinburgh festival and have an annual Christmas night out. We’re as much about having fun as we are about running. "
The group meets at Armadale Community Centre three times a week: Tuesdays at 9:15am/7pm, Thursdays at 6:30pm and Saturdays at 10:15am. Although it is currently all female, men are also welcome to take part. "It’s not strictly for women, and we have had men run with us in the past. There are around 25-30 members and the levels are very varied. We have some members who are preparing for the Edinburgh half marathon in May, whilst other are getting ready to do the 5k."
Like the members, the range of distances the group covers also varies: "Some people do about one mile or one and a half miles, whereas others can go for seven miles. We run to Bathgate quite often or go out towards Blackridge where there’s a cycle path which we follow.
"I like to vary our sessions so we sometimes do hill reps or sprints. It helps keep people interested and is also a good way of measuring your progress. You can see members running further up a hill than the last time. It gives them a sense of satisfaction."
Marie Claire is keen to see the group expand and encourages anyone reading to get in contact: "We’re tying to foster a environment where people feel welcome. It’s not overly serious and you needn’t feel intimidated if you’ve never run before."
If that sounds appealing, you can email Marie Claire. As well as the jogscotland group, she also runs fitness company Dream Fitness, providing fitness classes in West Lothian. For more information, visit their website
jogscotland groups in the Edinbugh & Lothians area
- Ainslie Park
- Big Hearts
- Corstorphine jogscotland Group
- Cramond jogscotland
- Edinburgh Frontrunners (Glenogle)
- Edinburgh (Dalry) Health All Round
- Edinburgh Lothian Road Run 4 It
- Edinburgh Newington Running Group
- Edinburgh Park
- Edinburgh University
- Heriot Watt University
- Inverleith Park
- jb's joggers
- Leith Victoria
- Maggie's Centre
- Mums On The Run Edinburgh
- North Merchiston Club
- Pentland Joggers
- Ropey Runners
- Roseburn Park
- Run Club
- South Queensferry - Billy Braidwood
- The Murrays
- Westwoods Health Club
- Dunbar jogscotland
- jogscotland Haddington
- Meadowmill Sports Centre
- North Berwick
- Dalkeith Kings Park
- Dalkeith Ironmills Park
- jogscotland Lasswade Not Last Place
- jogscotland Penicuik
- Midlothian Pink Laydeez
- Mums On The Run Penicuik
- Pathhead jogscotland Group
- Armadale Jolly Joggers
- jogscotland Bo'ness
- Personal Jog Training Sessions
- Xcite Armadale Joggers