Friday, 31 December 2021

Happy New Year 2022 - your free downloads are here

Here's 2022 taking the baton and starting the clock on another year...

 Well it's a Happy New Year to you in 2022 and hoping that it can be better than 2021 - although to be honest that is a pretty low bar in terms of the UK overall to do better. I'm not sure the delayed Brexit regulations for the customs paperwork to and from the EU will help maters much, nor the +100% increase in my electricity bills... but I digress, and neither is trying to hit more hospitalisations from Covid this January than 2021 a target I really expected the Govt to try to achieve - but here we are.

Whilst you're possibly wondering what was *actually good* about 2021 I will gently remind you that all the events we worked with in 2021 wanted you to have your pictures for free as part of the event package. Yes  - the first full 100% free download year we have managed to achieve ! A 5 year strategy finally came to fruition...

It's almost as if the race organisers wanted you to enjoy yourself AND remind yourselves on a regular basis just how much you enjoyed yourselves - and possible even remind your friends how much you enjoyed yourselves and how much more fun you will have next time when you do the event WITH your friends !

I wonder if that's really a good thing for an event to be spending your hard earned entry fee on ? We are somewhat biased on this - and think it is ! (with our heartfelt sympathies to those events who were constrained due to covid rescheduling and were not able to budget for our work in 2021).

So what to do tonight whilst you're watching The Hootenanny ? Download your 2021 photos !!

So here's where all the pictures from 2021 are - you can find them here in the month and then look for the race name or logo to find your race - just follow the instructions below:

Of course you'll need your race number - and you may have forgotten that - to use the search facility.

So either browse through an event sub-folder until you see yourself once - read the number and use that in the search (at the top level of the event gallery) - or have a look through the links below to find your race number from the results instead !

Here's the link to the race Gallery for 2021: with all those free download galleries !

And here are all the results for you to get your race numbers again and have a search easily !

Date Event Name Results link for Race number
Sun-25/04/2021 REP Bluebell
Sun-16/05/2021 REP Arundel Tri
Sat-22/05/2021 UltraX Spring Trail Series
Sun-23/05/2021 3Forts
Sat-05/06/2021 Mighty Hike - South Coast
Sun-13/06/2021 Mid Sussex Tri
Sat-19/06/2021 Mighty Hike - Lake District
Sun-20/06/2021 Hampshire Hoppit
Sat-26/06/2021 REP Arun Swim
Sun-27/06/2021 Oxford 10k
Sat-03/07/2021 Mighty Hike - Yorkshire Dales
Sat-10/07/2021 Mighty Hike - Gower Peninsula
Sat-17/07/2021 Mighty Hike - Thames Path
Sat-17/07/2021 Mighty Hike - Northumberland Coast
Sun-25/07/2021 REP Dawn on the Downs
Sat-31/07/2021 Mighty Hike - Dedham Vale
Sat-11/09/2021 REP Adur swim
Sat-11/09/2021 Mighty Hike - Wye Valley
Sun-19/09/2021 Winchester Half Marathon
Sun-19/09/2021 REP Worthing Aquathlon
Sun-03/10/2021 Clarendon Marathon
Sun-03/10/2021 Basingstoke Half
Sun-10/10/2021 aCR Islington 1 hour
Sat-16/10/2021 Cambridge Town and Gown 10k
Sun-17/10/2021 Cambridge Half Marathon
Sun-17/10/2021 Beachy Head Half,%20Half%20Marathon%20and%2010K/4558
Sat-23/10/2021 Beachy Head,%20Half%20Marathon%20and%2010K/4557
Sun-24/10/2021 Beachy Head 10k,%20Half%20Marathon%20and%2010K/4559
Sun-24/10/2021 Royal Borough of Kingston Half Marathon

Use your free downloads to raise more money !

So we have covered off enough bookings for 2022 to still be around as a going concern. On one hand I like the UK policy of letting everyone keep outdoor events going, and we seemed to have the hang of things in 2021, so hopefully we will be less affected by Covid in 2022 than we were in 2020. If you're working at an event, or know someone who is organising an event, then please pass on the next little advert for them to consider things, and when booking a professional photography service for a race make sure you consider these points (amongst many others) - because not all photography services are born equal ?
  1. How many photographers do they plan on bringing for the number of participants ?
  2. How many locations will they cover on the course ?
  3. How does the search function work on their gallery ?
  4. Are they GDPR compliant in protecting your name and your likeness ? (which is why we only use race numbers)
  5. Do they have a easy to navigate gallery ?
  6. How fast will the images be available ?
  7. What pixel size are the free downloads ?
  8. Do they have backup equipment ?
  9. Do they have Public Liability insurance ? (because accidents do happen).
  10. Do they have an office team that provides support ?
  11. Is it a "man and a mate" service, or a more comprehensive service ?
  12. Have they checked their actual images from similar events ? How many photos did they take ?
  13. Essentially - Can they do it?, Have they got Backup ?, What's the Liability ?
At the end of the day a series of scrollable facebook albums with photos where you can't see the participants faces - isn't what we would call a full professional photography solution. A bit of research and planning ahead often makes sure the event has the proper level of coverage it deserves to make it a memorable moment for all the participants !

Our first event for 2022 is going to be in February at the moment (unless anything else pops up in the meantime!) - so until then we will be getting some gallery planning sorted out, possibly get some filing done here in the office - and cross all our fingers and toes for a happy new year for everyone in 2022 !

Until next time - keep safe - so we can see you in a happy and fit 2022

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Events into 2022 - start your motivation

Us, standing around waiting for events...

If there's one way to make sure that you don't sit about and do nothing - it's having something to look forwards to. Like Kayke.

Granted in this recent topsy turvey world of covid - planning ahead has been the carrot that used to keep us going - and then the fishing stick of hope was thrown behind the donkey cart and turned to mush. [Ed: Don't call the Prime Minister a Donkey. Me: Why not ?]

So - is it worth entering races in 2022 now in order to get yourself through the winter training days  ? - the lure of head torches and reflective jackets put to one side for a moment. In short - yes.

It is possible to manage your expectations and goals setting to have options if the actual race day is pulled from under your feet. Metaphorically - put some supporting goals in place, and set good goals, and reduce risk.

Set a Goal. This isn't actually a goal, it's a finish arch, but it sort of looks like a goal, and the finish line is a goal too. So it is a goal. Sort of.

Setting good goals. Just say them right.
This is to set continuous goals that always exist - "get fitter" is a considerably better goal than "get fit". Anyone can move forwards on the first one - the second way of saying it brings in a whole load of metrics and decisions on what is "fit" ? "Get fitter" just means do something / anything that moves you in the right direction of fitness improvement.

Always consider the opposite too. Get fat, as opposed to get fatter. Which is the easier goal to execute an immediate plan against ? I opt for biscuits immediately on the latter, but would have to think long and hard about the former and start to procrastinate.

The difference between this is that one is a continuous goal, the other is a finite measurable goal. And if things are finite - it's easier to stop. And consider the finish line of a race - you don't just stop at it - the winners always run through it. So it should also be with your goals - they should be designed to keep you moving in the chosen direction !

Much like washing regularly, getting fitness into your routine delivers health benefits

Make things a habit
yeah yeah yeah, you know this - habits breed habits, like make tuesdays, thursdays and a weekend day an exercise day. and then it's easy to keep to a routine. Routines are easy if you're in a routine. It takes 2 weeks to build a routine apparently. Its taken me a lifetime, but what do I know Mr Covey ?

Put an appointment in your calendar to do it, and make it non-negotiable with yourself to do it. Apart from anything else - it will make you get other things done to make space for yourself.

Don't just enter one race
Enter a few, space them out. The biggest downer after a single race is that you don't have one booked in the future to keep the goal going. If you finish a race with another one in a few or three months time - then you can reframe how you've just done as a step onto the next race.

Planning ahead can be an uphill task, but you always get the benefit of the downhill bit afterwards

De-Risk your entry fee
Pay with a credit card,
don't enter through a third-party middleman entry - always from the actual events website (otherwise the third party takes 20% which the event organiser could really do with instead), and
check the small sprint on the refunds.

If you're ok with deferred or alternative races - pick a race organiser with other events you'd be happy to run in too, or confident they will be doing it next year too.

The more ahead of time / in advance you enter - the more likely the event is going to take place (apart from pandemic related things) - because the critical number of entries is passed sooner to make it economic to run the event. If you wait to enter last minute - it might be called off before you get the chance to. If you're trying to offset the risk of non-refund policies or deferments by doing this - then you need to accept that the races might not be there when you wanted to enter them. Support the good races and they will support you.

you can always done a parkrun too - if you like to keep your planning minimal - or of course - give volunteering a go - they *always* need people. In fact - *all* races need volunteers. Always step up - it is surprisingly good fun.

Enter local races organised by local running clubs
Sussex is incredibly gifted with the wonderful Sussex Fun Run league, as well as the winter cross country League. (question - why isn't there a summer cross country season?).

interesting fact - you don't have to be a running club member to enter the XC races - but you won't win the team prize if you're not...

Try Cross Country - (XC) - it might make you feel younger ?!

What events to enter ?
Obviously (and I would say this wouldn't I?) enter races we are working at. We've been around on the running scene since 2004 working at events, but have been around and about since 1995 involved in the local athletics and clubs in the sussex area. We know races come and go, and we know what type of events stick, and what type don't. Because our jobs are relying on them - it's probably as equally seriously as you putting your entries in. We have an archive online of 25million images - fully searchable - take a look - don't accept a race has free photos if it's just a few hundred photos put online for you to scroll through and find yourself - that's not a service - and you shouldn't get short changed.

We take a long look at value for money for participants and overall packages. Event organisers who do the same are the sort that want you to have free race photos and "get it". I'm a runner too remember.

Chris Rees - Race Director of the Southampton Marathon - yes - he gets it !

Here's a little list of 2022 races we will see you at to kick start your plans ?

1. Enter your local XC leagues
2. Consider some parkrun

Have a look at these beauties - and we will hope to see you there:

Date Event Event Website
Sun-20/02/2022 Hampton Court Half Marathon
Sat-26/02/2022 National XC Champs
Sun-06/03/2022 Steyning Stinger
Sun-06/03/2022 Cambridge Half Marathon
Sun-20/03/2022 Brentwood Half

and here's a few event organisers to keep an eye on and their browse their 2022 plans:

And on that note, time for a lunchtime run in the cold autumn sun whilst I can, because I've just heard a friend from school died from multiple heart attacks at the weekend, and, well, that's far far too young, and I don't want to sit down and contemplate that right now. Extra hugs for the family tonight.

Until next time