Friday, May 29, 2009

Run With Richard: Classroom Welcomes Canadian Teachers with a Jogging Tour of London

As teachers, we're constantly telling students how important it is to be healthy, stay active, drink water, play sports and focus on the academics. But we're not so great at taking our own advice.

I am a classic teacher and recruiter. I pick up some new exercise routine, go hard-core for a few months and then find myself swamped with work and...well, you know how it goes. I've tried running for years, do it for a few weeks (oh the torture!) and switch over to dragon boating or working out at the gym or whatever passing phase I happen to find myself in. I always come back to running though. It's just so easy. It's free. It's a great exercise routine to take with you when you travel. Who needs a gym when you have two feet and a pair of running shoes right?

Anyway, all of this is to say that I am running again, but this time I'm following the Couch to 5KM program. It's a very light, easy way to become a proper jogger within 9 weeks.

Richard is one of the directors of Classroom Ltd and a serious runner. He runs all the time. Rumour has it that he just did a 10km run with 12 000 other runners in London and came in 36th. 36th!!!

Richard would love to take our teachers on a jogging tour of London, but we've never quite managed to get it sorted. It's just another thing to organize in our very busy days.

Now that I'm determined to stick to this whole running thing, I've asked Richard if he'll take us all on our first jogging tour of London. You see, our office is at Oxford Circus, so we are right at the heart of downtown London. Regents park is right around the corner. It's a great place to jog.

Richard loves the idea, so this year we're doing our first ever Classroom Canada Run With Richard on November 2nd, 2009 at 6pm. How silly does this sound?!!

It will be silly, I know that much for sure. Richard has a very dry, British sense of humour. He's witty, smart and an all round good sport. His task is to come up with a 5km route where he can show our new arrivals (and perhaps even some of our other teachers) a different view of London. I've already told him that he has to go slow. I'll likely be telling him that every day until we actually run. And will be panting it while we run!

If you're already a jogger and one of the Classroom Canada teachers then your task is easy. Show up. Jog. Simple.

If you're not a jogger but like the idea, you might like the same program I am doing. You start off nice & slow, and these podcasts are free to download. I feel like I have my very own personal trainer, and it's free! And really, it's pretty easy. I have a bad back, wonky knee and orthotics, and I can do it. So I'm sure you can too.

What do you think? Will you, or would you, run with Richard? let me know so I know if this idea is worth all the effort, or if it's just another zany idea...

Happy Friday! I'm off to run now.

If you'd like to become part of the Classroom Canada team, please sign up for our newsletters & apply through our website. Be sure to read the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians to help you understand everything you need to know about teaching in London.


  1. I LOVE this idea, Victoria... not crazy at all. I also always go through jogging phases and I love the workout plan you suggested here, definately going to look into that. Thanks again, and COUNT ME IN!

  2. Awesome. Thanks Jodi! You're #4 to agree to Run with Richard. I hope we can get more than that, but it's a start. I'm going to look into some incentives, like prizes and the like. But this will be funny no matter what. I can't wait!

    I start Week #2 of the Couch to 5km program tomorrow and I'm actually really looking forward to it. :-) Let me know if you start it & what you think of it.

    Happy jogging,

  3. I hate running. I will do any other kind of aerobic exercise for hours on end, but running... no way.

    That being said, I think I might take it up just so I can participate in this. It sounds like fun!! Definitely go ahead and organize it.

  4. Lol Brynzapoppin! I used to say exactly those words. Anything but jogging. Anything! I also said the same thing about crunches. I curse those crunches.

    I think you'll like this program. And when jogging becomes less painful, you get to say "I am jogging. Yes. Me. The one who said she hated it. I love it now. Well how 'bout that?!" The best part is that it only takes 30 minutes three times a week. Easy enough right?

    Can't wait to see you jogging in London :-)

  5. Hey Victoria!

    I'll be teaching in London with another agency, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE reading your blog and I think the run is a great idea...I also run, and I plan on doing the Wimbledon Common run when I get to London....check out

    Kirbie :)

  6. Aw thanks Kirbie! How sweet of you. :-)

    You know you can always email me if you want to switch over to our little agency. Lots of our teachers have come to us from other agencies. I did myself. Most of my colleagues work for other agencies before finding Classroom as well. Tends to be how we roll I guess...

    I am so happy you enjoy the blog anyway! Hope you like teaching in London as well. :-)
    PS) I will check out that run for sure. Do you know about the North-South run yet? It's a big run for North Londoners & South Londoners to determine who are the faster runners. Quite funny really.

    Our office is also a block away from the Nike store that organizes free runs around Central London so lots of my colleagues and teachers have done those. They seem pretty good.

  7. Victoria,

    I will definately keep you and your agency in mind :) I love how much energy you put into helping Canadians make the transition and stay connected in London :)

    I have not heard of the North-South run yet, but I definately won't be one of the faster runners,LOL. I'm doing my first 5k race in July.


  8. Great idea Victoria! I am not even in London yet, as I still have to finish up my B Ed here in Canada, but I have my eye on Classroom Canada for after graduation. Maybe if this year's run is a success I will get to be part of one in Fall 2010!
    PS I am loving this blog - it's getting me so excited for a little adventure abroad!

  9. Thanks Tarrah! Where are you doing your B.Ed? I wrote a post a while back about the various teacher's colleges in Canada so I'd love to hear your feedback on your program as well.

    Good luck with it all & hopefully you will get to teach in London when it's all done & dusted. We also help teachers do practicums in London so if you'd like to do that, just send me an email when you're at that stage in the program.

    In the meantime, happy jogging!

  10. Victoria, you can count me in for the run on Nov. 2nd as well. It sounds like it will be a lot of fun (although it is exercise) and a cool way to meet other teachers with Classroom! Yay, can't wait.

    Amanda F

  11. Great! It looks like we will have a little running group after all. Richard will be very pleased. I'm tempted to get t-shirts made that say "I ran with Richard!" and a picture of his face. So cheesy, so good! lol.

    Can't wait!


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