At Hatea Run, one of our staple long runs in the Glenbervie Forest is the pack run over the Look Out Loop.
If you’re a regular runner with a few half marathons under your belt, you’ll know what I’m talking about. If you’re new to Whangarei and distance running, that previous sentence will read like utter gibberish!
In this blog I hope to break it down.
So first, what is a long run?
Runners Blue Print sums it up best:
As the name implies, a long run is a prolonged effort run with the main purpose of increasing endurance and stamina. These 60 to 120 minutes (even more) runs are all about running at an easy pace— one that’s slow enough that you could carry on a conversation without huffing and puffing.
Source: Runners Blue Print
What is a Pack Run?
It’s simply a grouping of a number of runners of the same pace and ability to run together. When we run in Glenbervie we make sure some who has knowledge of the forestry roads in each pack so no one gets lost. We do often have occasions where some speedier runners will often run ahead but will wait at the top of hills or intersections to reform the pack and carry on.
Why run in the Glenbervie Forest? Minimal to no traffic, the forestry roads have a low impact on joints, there is an abundance of hills which is great for leg strength, and there is an abundance of options to run. Its possible to run a 50km ultra marathon without crossing the same path twice.
What is the Look Out Loop?
Stats: 16ish Km, roughly 400m of elevation, all on gravel road, best run in an anti-clock wise direction, which is run on 3 roads – River, Lookout, and Etoru (Main) road, I have embedded the strava link below.
The Loop is very runnable with only a few steep climbs and the odd short stretch of slippery exposed clay along Look out road. Trail shoes are recommended. There is also the option to extend the loop out to 19km by adding on Nursery and Burma roads to finish.
On todays run we had a diverse bunch of runners, all with their own reasons to run; social interaction, training for a half marathon, ultra-marathon, to aim for a parkrun PB, to earn the after run pie.
Speaking from personal experience when I first joined Hatea my half marathon PB was 1:57.30. After 3 months of regularly running the Look Out Loop I managed to shave 13 minutes off my PB. Although I’m not necessarily competitive in my running nowadays, I still very much enjoy the challenge, the scenery and social interactions this pack run provides.
If this ticks your boxes by all means come along, we’ll do our best to accommodate you.
Where and When?
We meet at the bottom of Maruata road, at the Adventure Forest carpark 7.15am most Sundays (check our Facebook page for any changes) bring your own water as there isn’t any. 7.30am start.