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A jogger, Helen Pike, has shown us all how the wonderful running routes in Kings Heath can be used to create art solely from exercise! Helen, who is a keen jogger, has mapped out a huge 30 mile running routes in the shape of Elvis, and another shaped as a Dinosaur. Exercise has helped many of us keep fit and get outdoors during lockdown with noticeably more runners on the streets and social media posts to share achievements, and being a keen runner already, Helen has got very creative with her exercise.

Helen used the running app “Strava” to map and track her running routes and was challenged by her athletics club, the Birmingham Running, Athletics, and Triathlon (BRAT) Club, to create art in her exercise. Helen said that she first tried to map a run of a butterfly, but not being satisfied with her results, took it many steps further to create her masterpieces. Helen’s friend posted her achievements on Facebook and they have got much wider attention from the public.

Helen said: "Sometimes I do have to double back on myself or I've gone down a dead end just to turn back to make an eye or a claw or something. I have had some people look at me like I'm odd. But it has taken me into all sorts of areas, and I have found some really nice places. I think more people should do it [running]. Since lockdown I have ran a lot more. When you race it's not about where you finish it is more that you feel you have achieved something.”

"When I have done the Strava art I felt like I achieved something and had something to show for it. I think it is very important for your wellbeing. I found very quickly when we went into lockdown if I didn't exercise, I would have a bad day. At school we run with the children every morning just so they have a good day."

Her dinosaur run and Elvis run both took her around 4 hours each to complete at approximative 30 mile distances around Kings Heath, Moseley, Shirley, and Dickens Heath. Helen was training for the staggering 145 mile Grand Union Canal Race from Birmingham to London. This was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. We think what Helen has achieved is great. Has she inspired any of you to get out there and try a new hobby?