Hi! My name is Jade Preddy and I am the Marketing Officer for Folly Farm Centre – a sustainable event venue in Stowey. Folly Farm is a dynamic venue; offering conferences, weddings, team-building learning programmes and overnight accommodation. Folly Farm can be hired for special celebrations including birthday parties, family get-togethers and hen parties.

Folly Farm is a proud official sponsor of the Chew Valley 10k. As a local business owned by Avon Wildlife Trust – getting people outside enjoying the benefits of nature is hugely important to us. We are situated in the heart of 250 acres of nature reserve, filled with wildflower grasslands and ancient woodlands. Being owned by Avon Wildlife Trust also means that all profits from Folly Farm Centre are gift-aided back to the charity, meaning events benefit local wildlife and inspire people about the natural environment. I suppose my love of the outdoors is why I enjoy running. I get to enjoy the stunning countryside of the Chew Valley, meet new people and get fit too!

I hold my hands up; I am a beginner runner! I am one of those people who never thought I would be able to run for a mile, let alone 10K! I know some people may think 10K is not a big deal but it is for me. I am not a natural runner but have persevered and now I can’t stop as I want to keep improving. Since I have been running, I have found it is a perfect stress reliever, amazing for keeping weight at bay and the spirit of other runners has been so motivating. I used to think fellow runners would laugh at me so they powered past but I have, in fact, found that although they may run past you, they will run past with a smile and a motivational line “you’ll get there” “well done, keep going”. I started running with a beginner’s course at Somer Valley AC and have since become a fully paid member as I enjoy it so much. I think running with a group is vital for me as it spurs me on when I might naturally stop, especially at the foot of the hills!

Now for the pains of running. Sitting here just two weeks before the Chew Valley 10K, I have injured my foot, meaning I have had to rest from running. To be honest, this disheartened me when I watched my running club run without me. However, after speaking to my fellow runners – injuries happen. You just look after yourself, then get up and keep going. Even if I cannot run this year’s Chew Valley 10K, you can be sure that I will sign up again next year.

One thing I’ve learnt is that running is not about being the fastest or running the furthest distance. Running is about realising what you can do when you put your mind to it. So, if my foot does not improve in time, I won’t be running this race, however I will at the race proudly representing Folly Farm Centre – come along and say hello on the day. You can be sure I’ll be running again soon!

FOLLY FARM CENTRE OVERNIGHT STAY OFFER

Folly Farm Centre offers holiday accommodation in the heart of Avon Wildlife trust’s 250-acre nature reserve in Stowey. With accommodation available at £50 per room for self-catering, Folly provides the perfect base for exploration.

As we think you may need a bit of rest and relaxation after the race, we are offering Chew Valley 10K 2014 runners the opportunity to stay the night at Folly, with a free locally-sourced breakfast hamper FREE! All you need to do is show us your medal! This offer is valid until 31 August 2014 on Sunday-Thursday nights. Full terms and conditions are available on our website: follyfarm.org.

The Runners View.. from Folly Farm