Serpentine - What’s Happening in February 2021

Hello Serpies,

Well done for making it through Dry January, Veganuary, the January Team Hatch Bingo Challenge, or whatever you were up to in those cold January days! February promises to be another excellent month for all Serpentine members, even in this current lockdown. Here is what’s in store for you in February 2021…

No Club Run?  Why not “Run in Pairs”??

Since November 2020, ‘Running in pairs’ has been in operation for Serpies in order to keep running regularly with one another. There are possibilities to run anywhere around London, any pace/distance, even to do an interval or fartlek session. This is in line with the current Lockdown restrictions, which allow us to exercise with one other person outside of our household. I’m glad that about 20 Serpies signed up in January – let’s have some more in February! Please follow this link:

Using the experience in January we have tweaked a couple of details. Here is how it works:

  • Please select the day(s) of the week which you'd like to run – you no longer sign up for specific days.  Additional information can be inserted in the 'Date & Time preference' section (e.g. “I signed up for Tuesdays but I can’t run 16th Feb” or “I’d like to run weekday evenings”).
  • We will email everyone who has signed up to circulate contact details and run time/route/pace preferences. This email will go out every Monday (for midweek runs) and Thursday (for weekend runs), so sign up before those evenings.
  • Pairing suggestions will be provided, although you are free to contact anyone who has signed up.
  • Sign-up is on a monthly basis. If you sign up at any time during February, you're on the list for the rest of February and will receive the twice-weekly emails until the month ends.

The usual precautions apply – please don't run if you are displaying symptoms of Covid, or if you should be self-isolating. Maintain social distancing at all times – please keep a distance with your run partner during your run. Also, you are encouraged to stick to a regular run partner or a limited number of run buddies. Email me if you have any questions.


Tour de Serpiesphere – Stage 1 (8km) and Stage 2 (10km)

Over a week ago we started the Tour de Serpiesphere, a series of virtual running races for Serpentine club members over Winter and Spring 2021. The Tour consists of 5 Stages, each one with a race period of a few weeks, and all the distances add up to a marathon. In other words, you will know what your marathon PB could be if you were running a marathon in chunks!

In February there are two races:

  • Stage 1: 8km – Winter is for Cross Country so we are starting with the Met League race distance. The race is open now until 10pm on Sunday 14th February (Race entry: After Stage 1, one lucky participant will be drawn among all racers to win a spot prize – which is either a Serpentine hoodie (appropriate for a ‘Cross Country’ race) or a £20 Serpie kit ‘voucher’ for you to spend;
  • Stage 2: 10km – We’ll move the distance up a little and go for a 10k.  The race will open on Saturday 6th February and will close at 10pm on Sunday 28th February (Race entry:;

As well as the race entries above, please also submit here a Garmin/Strava screenshot or picture of your watch (or equivalent) for verification.

You might notice that race periods of Stages 1 and 2 have an overlapping week – when Stage 1 ends on 14th Feb, Stage 2 will have already begun. Hopefully this gives everyone more opportunities to take part, but please note that you will have to do a separate run for each Stage. Therefore, you cannot run one 10k during the overlapping week and submit an 8k time (for Stage 1) and a 10k time (for Stage 2) using the same run.


Serpiesphere Virtual 5k - the Spring Series continues!

Our Serpiesphere Virtual 5k continues to be very popular among Serpies – we had over 60 members from aged 13 to 80 keeping up with their 5ks in January! Again in February, we have two 5ks, both cut-offs are on Sunday at 10pm:

Please follow this link for more information for the Spring series. Questions? Please email our Serpiesphere Virtual 5k supremo Sophie Taylor, who works together with Baiju McCubbins and Pete Mackintosh to keep the race running nicely.


Zoom training sessions

We continue to run these sessions on Zoom:

  • Our track coach Andy Reeves leads a circuit training session on Wednesday evenings. Everyone is welcome to join. Look out for the Facebook messages by Andy before Wednesdays for the Zoom link and details.
  • Rosh Karunaratne runs the weekly spin classes over Zoom at 7pm every Tuesday. The sessions will have an interval training-based focus and are open to all abilities. Any equipment that allows you to spin is suitable (turbos, exercise bikes, spin bikes etc), plus you’ll need water, a towel, and a computer to run Zoom. Please email Rosh to join.


Zwift Weekly Team Time Trial & Other Rides

Just like every week since April 2020, we will continue to field teams in the Zwift Team Time Trial every Thursday evening, competing against over 500 teams every week. It is a fantastic workout, and very social at the same time. So if you have access to Zwift and are free on Thursday evenings, please join us using this link to find out more. Once you have joined, the team can help set you up to race.

Apart from these regular Team Time Trials, February 2021 will see these events:

  • On Thursday 11th February, we will attempt to become the best in London in the inaugural Zwift London inter-club race! The race will be held in the usual World Tactical Racing League (WTRL) Zwift Team Time Trial platform, with the race assigned in Zone 7. Organised by Triathlon England, this is meant to be a test event with the hope of being a regular race among London clubs in future.
  • Starting on Wednesday 17th February, the Zwift Duathlon League will take place for 6 weeks. Participants will ride for as far as they can for 35 minutes, followed by a 10-minute transition, and then a 15-minute run. To find out the schedule (including when you will race Watopia’s Waistband and the Greatest London Flat), rules, and how to register, please click here.
  • Not every Zwift ride needs to be a race, of course. Recently the Serpie Zwift riders created a new channel in discord called #meetup which allows us to organise group rides, mainly on Saturday mornings but sometimes at other times of the week as well. This not only gives us an opportunity to go around Watopia together, you can also just join the discord and have a fun social time without riding. Please speak to our organiser Vinh Lam or me if you want to join.


Charity of the Month – Secondary First

Following last month’s appeal for donations for Great Ormond Street Hospital through the January Team Hatch Bingo, I have decided to mention a charity each month, knowing that charities need help from all of us during the pandemic. The charity of February is Secondary First, which specialises in finding cures for secondary breast cancer – i.e. cancer spreading to other parts of body due to breast cancer. It is currently not a curable disease and is estimated to kill 1000 women in Britain every month.

To help raise funds, our own Jack Corkett ran 5km every day in January, and now resting after over 100 miles of running! Many congratulations to Jack for completing such an enormous challenge. Join me and plenty of others to donate via this link, as well as leaving a “well done” message to Jack!

Running for a charity in the coming months? Please email me – more than happy to spread your word next month!


And finally…

  • After the Valentine’s Special Serpiesphere Virtual 5k and also the conclusion of Stage 1 of the Tour de Serpiesphere, we will host a Zoom social evening on Wednesday 17th February to announce the winners, and also to catch up with one another. Details will be out closer to time – get some drinks and join us!
  • Once lockdown restrictions are lifted at some point in 2021, we are hoping to organise a series of trail runs around the Capital Ring – a 78-mile route around the suburban greenery in London. We already have created a schedule to run the entire route over 6 stages, with one run every few weekends. I am looking for a few more volunteers to plan and lead these runs. Sounds fun and want to be part of this? Please contact me.
  • Thanks to those who got in touch in January regarding using our subsidy for training as coaches, race organisers, run/cycle leaders, and officials. I have already had a few names on the list, but you are still welcome to put your hat in the ring. Please feel free to get in touch with me now to express your interest. Don’t miss the chance to help the club whilst obtaining additional skills and doing something fun!


Happy Running in February!

Hans Ho

Participation Representative (

Submitted: 2 February 2021