Posts Tagged ‘parkrun’

Avondale Forest parkrun

Monday, September 26th, 2022 | Sport

Avondale Forest is a park in County Wicklow. It is about a 20-minute drive from Ashford if you find yourself in Ashford. The course features two loops but a single lap with a slight repeat in the middle, so mostly you are running around terrain you haven’t been on before. It’s all off-road using the gravel paths. There are some hills but none of them are overly steep or long.

Corkagh parkrun

Monday, September 19th, 2022 | Sport

Corkagh is a park located in the west of Dublin. It’s a good size and the course is two loops of opposite sides so you run back up the straight you ran down initially but beyond that, there are no loops. There are frees, fields and ponds to run past so it’s all very nice.

I’m still feeling under the weather and running in my easy-pace shoes, so I was pretty happy with 22:11.

Penrith parkrun

Friday, September 16th, 2022 | Sport

Last weekend we headed to Ullswater for an event. The closest parkrun is Penrith. In some ways, it is a shame to come to the Lake District and run around a sports field. But it was well-attended, people were friendly and I had a good time.

It was the opposite to Fairview parkrun: I only managed 23rd place, despite running a faster time, but that was good enough for 2nd in my age group.

Fairview parkrun

Wednesday, September 14th, 2022 | Sport

Until I ran Fælledparken parkrun last month, I had never done a parkrun outside of the UK. Now I have done two. Predictably, for Dublin, it was raining heavily. The course is three laps round the outside of the park.

I thought about doing a fast one but I didn’t feel good after my warm-up and only had my easy distance shoes with me. As it was, the fastest time was just over 19 minutes so I wouldn’t have been able to keep up in any case. I felt stronger as I went on and finished in 22:32. Good enough for 6th overall but being in M35-29, I was still 4th in my age group.

Fælledparken parkrun

Thursday, August 25th, 2022 | Sport

My first international parkrun done! There were so many tourists from the UK that they did the briefing in English. Fælledparken is an inner-city park in Copenhagen and the course consists of three laps of the path around the park.

Dad’s 250th parkrun

Monday, November 22nd, 2021 | Family & Parenting, Sport

On Saturday, my dad completed his 250th parkrun. It’s taken us 7-8 years to reach the 250 club between holidays, conflicting races, injuries, etc but we’ve finally unlocked the best t-shirt (colour wise). Venla also completed her 5th junior parkrun over the weekend so a busy weekend for Worfolks at Temple Newsam.

Sub-20 parkrun

Sunday, November 7th, 2021 | Sport

A sub-20 5k has always seemed like one of those mystical things for club runners to me. Almost up there with a 3-hour marathon. It’s super fast and something I never thought I would get anywhere near.

Then Nike produced their super-shoes and in the first month of lockdown I took a minute off my PB to bring it down to 21:06 and it didn’t seem so far away anymore. But 66 seconds is still a lot of time to shed.

I made an attempt at it in April of this year but had to fail out 2 kilometres in when I realised I hadn’t set my watch up correctly (I turned on ultratrak which, despite the name, actually turns off GPS intermittently). Unfortunately, I had a small window before the 7in7 challenge and Evolve Trio and that was that.

Now it is November, the triathlon season is over, and I decided it was worth a crack before I dropped my training down over winter. It wasn’t the best start: my digestive system woke up unhappy which meant I marched up to the start not feeling great. But I thought I would give it a go anyway because perfect days don’t come along by accident very often; they’re made.

As such, I tried to go through all of the preparations for assuming it would be a good day. Carb-heavy breakfast of Frosties 90 minutes before, a caffeine energy gel 30 minutes before, I took my coat to keep my warm before the run, did a 15-minute warm-up and some activation exercises to get my body ready.

I got myself right on the start line to get a good position and ended up going out too hard. This was sort of the plan though as I didn’t want to get held up by other runners. And despite all this talk of negative splits, many PBs are run by someone running beyond themself in the first half and then somehow managing to hang on.

I clocked through the first kilometre in 3:48, so with some sliding room, but with it also being downhill and going out too hard. The second one was 4:08 but this wasn’t disheartening because I realised I had forgotten to turn GLONASS on for more accurate tracking and thus the course was likely to read short.

By the 2k mark, I was hurting and suspected my pace was unsustainable. I wanted to give up and walk so many times. There was wind. And the slight uphills feel like a lot when you’re already on your limit. I managed to go through kilometre three in 4:02 but the pain just got worse and my fourth kilometre was 4:17.

By this point, I didn’t really know where I was at. I knew I was behind the 4:00 per kilometre mark, but given my GPS was off, I felt like I was still in with a chance if I just kept the legs turning over.

As I got to the bottom of the final hill I checked my watch and saw I had 90 seconds left. It’s all a gradual hill but the first 2/3 is very gradual and the final 1/3 is a little steeper. I allocated 30 seconds to each section and knew that if I got to the bottom of the pivot point with 30 seconds to go, I could sprint to the finish.

I made it through ahead of that and opened up everything I had left. I closed the line in:

19:39

I had done it, I was a sub-20-minute runner!

My final kilometre was paced at 4:04 so about in line with the rest given the slight changes in elevation. My watch registered 4.83 kilometres meaning that the 4:04 pace it said I was running was actually more like 3:56.

My calves were screaming after I stopped. Even walking down the finish funnel was a strange limp of not bending my legs and they didn’t stop hurting for the rest of the day.

It turns out I wasn’t overestimating the pain I was in. My average heart rate for the run was 198 and it reached a maximum of 209. I’ve held an average of 190 before at the Abbey Dash, but it usually maxes out at 205 and I’m several years older now. As a little bonus, I was also 1st place in the VM35-39 category.

Thank yous: thank you to all of the marshalls that make parkrun possible. I try to thank them as I run past but today was just a head-down day with an occasional wave of thanks. I hope that’s understandable!

Birthday wishes: happy birthday to Poppy! I shamelessly went for a PB rather than joining the birthday run train and she still gave me a birthday biscuit. Also thank you to Anne for handing out the chocolate mini bites.

250th parkrun

Wednesday, October 20th, 2021 | Sport

I’ve joined the 250 club! Thank you to all of the marshalls, my parents for coming over and running it with me, and everyone who hung around at Coffee on the Crescent for a chat after the run.

Chevin Forest parkrun

Sunday, September 19th, 2021 | Sport

First time at Chevin Forest parkrun. It’s beautiful. Every time I go there I think I should go there more often. The parkrun course is pretty hilly but no worse than Temple Newsam. Muddy, though, even in summer, so it is going to be a challenging course in winter. Great to see plenty of fellow HPHers there, too. And I’ve increased my Wilson Index to 4.

Andover parkrun

Tuesday, September 7th, 2021 | Sport

Last weekend, we headed down to Wiltshire for a Questars race. However, as my start time was not until noon, we headed over for a cheeky parkrun in Andover. I successfully managed to take it easy (for my newfound speed, anyway) and took 26 minutes to get around. It’s a nice course: flat and reasonable scenic. Very well organised and marshalled, too. Thank you to all of the volunteers that made it a lovely experience.