GoodGym

GoodGym, what makes it so good? Well let me tell you. GoodGym is a not for profit company who’s ethos is to do good and get fit. But what does that mean and how do they do this?
1. Group Runs
So a group run happens every week for each area where there’s a GoodGym, which is around 31 areas in the UK with the majority in London. I go to GoodGym in Camden and we always start with a good warm up before running to our task. These tasks can be anything from making beds at a homeless shelter, packing condoms (yes really), doing gardening work, cleaning at a community centre or painting. After the task which is normally around 10-30mins depending on how many people are in the group we do a fitness task. The fitness tasks including running technique, time trials, partner work or anything to help you with your overall running ability. The runs are normally between 4-7km but may be more or less depending on your area and task. We always end the run with a cool down, normally 5 or 6 different static stretches and then it’s off to the pub, or for some anyway!
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2. Coach Runs
The idea of coach runs is that you are partnered up with an older person as over a million older people in the UK are isolated and you visit them on a weekly basis. Now there’s “run” in the title so you are expected to run to their home, spend about half an hour with them and then run back. This keeps you fit and active but also means your coach has a weekly visitor which could make a massive difference to their lives. Your coach will also be your motivator to run, which I think is just lovely. To get involved in coach runs you will need to be DBS checked. Fear not all coaches are recommended too.
3. Missions 
So missions usually happen on a weekend and can be on a small or large scale. A few of you may meet up to help an older person with their garden, moving furniture or perhaps on a larger scale clean up a local park. Missions are a sort of mix between the two runs above. Again you need to be DBS checked to participate in these runs.
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Now if the three types of runs haven’t got you hooked then here’s a few more reasons. So when you register for GoodGym you get a free red technical running tee which is made by New Balance. New Balance are GoodGym’s fitness partner. After 50 good deeds you get a black New Balance tee and after 100 you get a tee with wings on the back. Not only that but you also get 20% off New Balance. I am not at 50 good deeds yet but there are 52 weeks in a year so if I don’t have one by the end of the year you can tell me off for slacking!
Now if that still isn’t enough the run leader of the group runs will be keeping track of your progress and you have the option to add in a goal and they will provide advice on how to achieve this. After each run you get a run report with what you did in terms of the task, distance and fitness session as well as who participated and some great photos. There are also lots of organised races and events to participate in and everyone is really friendly which makes running all that more enjoyable! The GoodGym site is also really sociable and you can cheer each other on and you get lots of award stickers for hitting so many tasks or being a “tourist” for going to a new area like I did last week as I went to Barnet GoodGym. One thing to note is that your progress is tracked by Strava so if you want this to be calculated then you will need to ensure that your devices are connect or compatible with Strava.
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All of the activities above are free for GoodGym members but there is an option to donate £9.99 every month to GoodGym to help them help older isolated people and local communities.
If you are reading this and thinking running really isn’t my thing then perhaps you know a local community centre, charity or older person that could benefit from GoodGym? If so you can email getinvolved@goodgym.org
Thanks, love and more love, preparedtotri x
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