Carnegie Harriers Committee 2019/20

Click on Members Image for Bio and Responsibilities

Alan Murray

President

Val Macaulay

Secretary

I took up running in the mid-90’s to improve my fitness and have been a member of Carnegie Harriers for over 20 years. Nowadays I am very much a recreational runner but over the years I have taken part in races from 1 mile upwards, my longest being the 43 mile long Devil o’ the Highlands in 2005.

Through the club I have made a lot of very good friends and had some great experiences, which would not have happened otherwise. My closest friends in the club are ultra-runners and as a result of supporting them in their long-distance adventures (I have supported runners in the West Highland Way 15 times), I have been privileged to have been asked to support some of the best Scottish and UK ultra-athletes in national and international competitions (100k and 24 hour races) in both the UK and Europe since 2009.

As a Jog Leader I was involved in setting up the first Jog Scotland group in Dunfermline and use the experience I gained there to assist with club training as required. I have been involved in the organisation of many club races, as Race Director of the Auld Toun 10K and the Graham Clark Memorial Races and as Assistant Director for the Devilla Forest Races.

I have over 10 years’ previous service on the committee, including 3 years as Treasurer and 4 as Club President before stepping down in 2013. I took up my current role of Club Secretary in 2016 using my knowledge and experience of club affairs and running in general to support the newer members of the committee.

I am proud to be a member of Carnegie Harriers and hope to continue to support it in any way I can.

Jonathan Millar

Mens Captain

I took up running in 2008 often running myself and without any structured training. It wasn't until 2013 when I joined Carnegie Harriers and looking back wish I had joined earlier. The training proved to be very beneficial as my fitness increased and race times improved vastly. Since being a member I've discovered a real love of trail and hill running with my main focus being ultras. I've been lucky to take part in some great races such as The Highland Fling, Devil o the Highlands and the Skye Ultra.
In my day job I work in accountancy and as Treasurer I'm glad to be able to use my experience and give something back to club.

Lesley Halstead

Woman's Captain and Club Coach

For those of you who are not familiar with my coaching credentials, I thought it best to outline a few of the things I have done in recent years. Whilst my focus is mainly on running and athletics, I have also coached both primary and high school age groups in tennis, badminton and netball. I led after-school high school netball team for a short period and currently work as a supply coach for Active Schools.

As well as holding a HND in Sports Coaching, I am a qualified jog leader and ran a successful jogscotland group in Inverkeithing for a few years. The group is currently on hold due to personal circumstances. I have also coached runners on a 1 to 1 basis, from couch to 5k programmes through to marathon training.

I took up running about 12 years ago as a jogscotland member and joined Carnegie Harriers 2 years later. I love running and have participated in races ranging from 1 to 95 miles. I perform better on the road, but I’m happiest on the hills and trails. My individual credentials however are unimportant when it comes to coaching others.

After all, their progress is not about me

Brian Miller

Treasurer

I’m a late convert to running. I played a lot of football in my youth – growing up in Wick, there wasn’t much else to do! Pretty much gave it up when I moved to Edinburgh for Uni, but once I started work 4 years later, I got involved in regular 5-a-side games with colleagues. This became the main source of my exercise, ahem, ‘regime’, for the next 20 years. As I crept (literally) into my 40s, the ankle knocks and sore knees occurred more frequently and were taking longer to clear up. Running in a straight line seemed to be more agreeable, so in early 2016, I dusted off the running trainers I had bought back in 2001 (I joined a workplace gym, and went about twice) and plodded along the Dunfermline Cycle Path.

It was a short loop, just under 5k, and it took me a few times before I was able to get round it without walking for some of it. This was a totally different proposition to running in short bursts for football. But I persevered. I found out about the local Parkrun (thanks Neil), so ran my first of those in July 2016. I was then persuaded/badgered/convinced to sign up for the Kirkintilloch 12.5k in Feb 2017 (thanks, Neil). It was a marked step up in distance, but did it anyway. Met a few Harriers that day, and decided to sign up for the Club that evening (thanks, Neil). By the end of the week, I’d been to my 1st training session and had signed up for the Alloa Half (thanks again, Neil). In 2018, I ran my 1st marathon, comfortably inside my 4 hour target.

My only regret is that I never did this sooner. I’ve really enjoyed being part of the Club. I try to get to training as often as I can, as it has made such a difference to my running. I really enjoy doing the different sessions and learning about the benefits of each type of activity. Joining the Committee as Treasurer, provides me with the opportunity to help out and to put something back into the Club.

Colin Reynolds

Hill Captain

I started running in 2003 as an unfit 32 year old. My goal then was to raise money for a children’s cancer charity who were supporting my sick niece. I didn’t think 15 years on I’d still be hooked.Initially I wanted to be fit enough to complete the local Dunfermline Half Marathon but it didn’t stop there, it went on to see me complete almost 200 half marathons over 25 marathons/ultras but it’s the hills and mountains of Scotland that have my heart. I joined Carnegie Harriers back in 2005 and received a warm welcome from what I considered “proper runners”. Everyone was so supportive as they are to the present day. It was through Carnegie Harriers that I was introduced to hill running and I have now enjoyed/endured 100 SHR races. I hope to encourage a “have a go” attitude to new and old members of the club and see CH as a recognised presence again at Scottish Hill Races. “Hills are our friends” they are also extremely beautiful so come with me and enjoy.

Steve Adam

Committee Member

Although never a club member, I was a decent sprinter at school, however a week into University and any thoughts of running were dispelled for the next 30 years.

Eventually in my 40s, having introduced my son to a running club, I began to photograph him and his club mates at events, which led to a lot of requests to photograph high profile races from Scottish Athletics and other clubs and media outlets.

Eventually, in my very late 40s, on realising I was a bit overweight I decided to start running myself, but wasn’t very good at it, found every step a struggle and just thought it was very boring. Someone suggested the Couch to 5k programme to build things up gradually and eventually on the third attempt, I completed it.

Round about the same time, the Dunfermline parkrun started and I volunteered to photograph it and was eventually persuaded by the lovely core team there to run it. It wasn’t pretty but I began to enjoy running for the first time. I still found it quite boring though so looked around and found the excellent Jogscotland Dunfermline and discovered that running in a group was infinitely more satisfying. I also realised despite still having a large appetite I was losing weight which was a bonus.

I then thought about joining Carnegie Harriers and even spied on a couple of their training sessions from afar but decided they were too fast for me, it would get embarrassing having folk waiting for me, and would dent my confidence, so left it a little while before taking the plunge and turning up at a session.

I can honestly say it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I was welcomed from day one, didn’t get left behind, no one laughed at me, the training was excellent, I made a lot of new friends, entered races, have gradually got stronger and faster and to top it all, lost 2 stone and at 52 never felt fitter.

I regret not starting running earlier but on the plus side despite my age I’m still getting personal bests at races. The highlight for me being a sub 20 minute 5k at the Scottish Road Racing Champs. I’ve now been with the club almost 2 years and have competed at all distances up to half marathon although still undecided whether my injury prone body is up to a full marathon yet, but never say never..

I also greatly enjoy photographing Carnegie Harriers races and will continue to do so and look forward to bringing new ideas to the club as a Committee member.

Gordon Barrie

Committee Member

For the first 45 years of my life running did not feature much. I did manage to somehow qualify to represent my school at cross country in 6th year but only because no-one else wanted to do it but I didn't realise.
As I hit my mid 40s I realised that sitting on the couch watching box sets was not an effective way to encourage weight loss. As someone who detests cycling and swimming that left running.
Parkrun was my first real introduction to organised running and I realised I actually enjoyed running socially. I wasn't particularly fast but that wasn't important to me (it still isn't TBH).
After some 10ks as an unattached runner I decided to try a running club and went along to a Carnegie Harriers session. I was made to feel welcome and encouraged and joining was an easy decision to make.
Being in the club has really given me the opportunity to develop as a runner, I've experienced trail running, cross country, hill running and increased my distance up to completing my first marathon. More than that though I've made friends, had laughs and been part of something special. It's a great club to be part of and I still get a tingle when I pull on the club vest.....that could be the nipple protective gel though.

Karen Forsyth

Committee Member

I started running in Jan 2010 with the BUPA Great Winter 5K Run being my first ever "race". I was then introduced to parkrun in the Feb. To get me out with other people, I was pointed in the direction of Jog Scotland. I got my running up to a standard to where I should have moved on but didn't. I wasn't confident enough. I somehow turned that around and joined the Harriers. I always remember I said I couldn't run a 10K, I did it then said I couldn't run a Half Marathon, I did it. My biggest achievement was running London Marathon as I was lucky enough to secure a club place and to top it all off, the friendships I've made through Carnegie are priceless.

Sue Walker

Welfare Officer

I come from a family of runners (Scally) with several family members winning national titles and earning Scottish and uk vests(not me though!) I was a county level sprinter in my teens but I didn’t improve enough for senior levels and drifted away. I came back into running in the 1990s as I could fit it in around my children and work. After a few years, I joined Jog Scotland, and then after running my first marathon in 2004, I joined Carnegie Harriers.

I thoroughly enjoyed the more structured approach to training and the camaraderie of the club. Since joining in 2004, I have run around 2 dozen marathons and a similar amount of ultras in the UK and overseas. My proudest marathon achievement was qualifying to run the Boston marathon in 2007 and my longest event was a 104 mile event, the Heart of Scotland (Dunkeld centred) in 2010. I’ve also supported club mates in their ultra endeavours and have pitched in to support others running in Scottish ultra vest.

Over the last few years, I have been very involved in volunteering at senior levels in Girlguiding which has impacted on my time to train. I’ve managed to keep things ticking over (just) and was pleased to complete a goal I set myself of having run in every Scottish county by the time I finished my term as Scottish Chief Commissioner.

My time of volunteering at a senior level in Girlguiding is behind me now, though I’m still a brownie leader and I’m enjoying having more freedom to train regularly. My goal for the next couple of years is to regain lost fitness and then complete the St Cuthbert’s Way race and the River Ayr race as I have unfinished business with them.

The running photos come from my last race (apart from The Festive Forest) in Carcassonne in October 2017

Neil Anderson

Committee Member

“Running is the greatest metaphor for life
Because you get out of it what you put into it”
My background in sport was playing canoe polo, not the sport you really need runners legs for. I had only ever run for a bit of fitness once a week when working as a fitness instructor but after changing jobs and having to retire from polo through injury, I decided to see what I could achieve through running. After doing various Spartan races and 3 half marathons (badly) I decided I needed some structure to my training.
A good friend of mine mentioned joining the “Harriers” as this would give me the structure I was looking for in my training. The first thing I asked was, am I good enough? Well the first session with the club certainly answered that quickly. I was made to feel welcome and at no point did I feel like I was too slow or not good enough.
Ever since that first session I have noticed an improvement in my running. I have also tried things that I would normally avoid at all costs like running in the Devils Burden Relay hill race, normally I keep away from things that go up the way however I will be back. I have also completed my first marathon, again something I was positive I would never do.
It’s not all about running though I have also had the pleasure of supporting a member complete the West Highland Way race. The support of the club and fellow members has even spurred me on to compete in the UK Ironman having completed the 70.3 last year in Edinburgh.
Joining the club was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, I’ve made lifelong friendships and have seen my running improve. I look forward to what the next 12 months will bring. As a committee member I hope to help continue the good work the committee ls doing and support both the rest of the committee and the club members in achieving the best for them and the club.

Michael Bisset

Committee Member