“It’s friends, it’s fitness, and it’s free”: meet Nick, the leader of Bury’s Clarence Runners
8 August 2022
8 August 2022
Nick Whitley lives in Bury with his wife and four year old daughter. He’s the creator and leader of Clarence Runners, a popular running group “with a focus on encouraging others” where “all ages and all abilities are welcome.” On September 18th, 10 members of Clarence Runners will be joining us for the Bury 10K, so we caught up with Nick to learn a bit more about his group.
When Nick lived in London, he was a dancer, a profession that always kept him in great shape. But after moving up to Bury and starting work at a bank, he realised he needed to make more of an effort to keep active. Six years ago, he was looking to get in shape for his wedding, so he was keen to sign up when his work announced they were running a 10K together.
Nick’s love of running grew from there – he had always enjoyed cycling, so it wasn’t a far jump to start doing triathlons. He started doing around three triathlons each year and enjoyed making running a part of his routine. However, he hit a bit of a snag when he tried to find some other people to run with.
“I find it hard to stay motivated on my own. I thought that there must be a local running group in Bury I could join – but there wasn’t! So I made a post on Facebook to say, ‘does anyone fancy a local running group? There doesn’t seem to be one,’ and I got a really good response.”
He made a Facebook group, which was quickly joined by 80 people. About 15 people came to the first meeting, and around 10 to 20 people show up at each run. “People just love it,” Nick says. “We all really look forward to it – it’s free, it helps them lose weight, and nobody gets left behind.” Nick’s favourite things about running include “the fact it’s so simple – all you need is a pair of trainers”, as well as the sense of community. “It’s friends, it’s fitness, and it’s free,” he says.
Along with around 10 other Clarence Runners, Nick is looking forward to running the Bury 10K on Sunday 18th September. This event is part of our Bury Running Festival, a popular day out with events for the whole family. “I’m looking forward to the camaraderie, support, and the fact it’s a nice big event,” says Nick.
We love seeing people set up new ways to get their community active and connected, and we think it’s brilliant that Nick created this group! Clarence Runners meet at Clarence Lido for a main run on a Thursday at 5.30pm and a 5K on a Tuesday morning at 7.30am. Why not join them? Click here to find out more about their group.