Couch to 5K
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How was your first park run?

I'm dreading turning up tomorrow in case it's full of lycra clad luvvies - no offence to anyone who is, but my lycra days, well they never really started tbh :)

Anyway, I know I will get lapped by a few, how did you feel before your first timed run? Any tips/pitfalls?

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Try not to worry about the others. At my parkrun every shape and size took part and everyone looked like they belonged. I felt really bouncy and excited/scared, it was a good experience but I would advise not to be too excited and go off to quickly. We are all behind you!

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I'm glad you're behind me!!! Actually I think it more likely people will be in front :) :)

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Don't worry, there'll be all sorts. Yes, some will be in lycra but I've seen all sorts, from an older lady in an anorak and slacks (she wasn't last either!), to a lad who looked as if he was still in the boxer shorts and t-shirt he slept in, And the clothing is no indication of how fast they run either...the lycra clad luvvies aren't always the faster runners.

Tips - don't worry about how fast anyone else is going. Stick to a pace where you can say something encouraging to someone as you pass them or they pass you, that way you should be able to keep it up all the way round. Enjoy the social side of it - smile at the volunteers and thank them for their support. It really is a feel-good event !

If there are hills, slow down so you can recover quickly afterwards (same effort, not same speed!)

Pitfalls - don't get drawn in with the initial rush, it's very easy to set off too quickly by being dragged along with the crowd. Try to stick to your comfortable speed - that way you're more likely to have energy to spare at the end.

If you can, laminate your barcode and safety pin it to your running shirt - that way you don't have to fumble for it at the end.

Remember to enjoy it !

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thanks sfb350, can't laminate it tonight, but I'll stick it in a jiffy bag instead - good tip :)

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That will help. When you finish, you will be handed a plastic token with your finish number on. Once you have that, you can find your barcode and take it and the finish number to be scanned. Once you have your finish number, you don't need to worry about who gets scanned first.

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There were all sorts at mine too, from children to people in their 70s. Some people take it really seriously, some are just there for the bacon butties at the end ;) You'll be fine! They are really friendly. I wish I was going to my local one tomorrow :(

I wear lycra and I'm sloooooow!

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Hi

I was a little concerned I would be too slow and be the last one to finish(incidentally I was!) however I completed it quicker than i thought in 47mins 35 seconds so hope to do it quicker at tomorrows parkrun. However as it is expected to rain I am having second thoughts as the only coat I have got soaked through on tuesday so anything more persistent and heavier than a shower it will be no good so not sure what I will run in if it all. Will wait and see what it is like tomorrow - it might change.

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Don't worry about rain. I have a waterproof running jacket but when it rains I wear it for 5 minutes at the most and then tie it round my waist. I prefer to get wet from the outside (rain) than from the inside (sweat!). The best plan is to have something warm to change into as soon as possible afterwards - no hanging around shivering. Keep a warm jumper/sweatshirt in the car that you can put on asap.

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I was rather jittery when I turned up for my first Parkrun, however within minutes someone had come over to chat and explain the route to me. Then a big cheerful chap joined us and I was introduced to him too, then some girls. The start was about to take place and they asked if there were any first timers, quite a few put up their hands and we all got a welcome clap. The big cheerful chap was the back runner and he whispered to me that he volunteered quite often as he was the slowest runner so it made no difference when he came in last ;) What I thought was going to be an embarrasing slow time turned out to be nothing of the sort, but most important of all I enjoyed every minute of it.

Best tip I got and I'll pass on to you was, start towards the back, don't be tempted to try and keep up with the fast starters, just take your time get into your comfortable stride and enjoy yourself. I'll bet you'll be back to try and better your first time within a few weeks. Good luck :)

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Thanks Oldgirl, made the mistake of trying to keep up with the 20 year olds at boot camp, won't be doing that again!! No chance of getting lost, but sadly no bacon butties for me as I need to lose weight :) :(

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Hope all went well! Pacing yourself, starting towards the back are all good advice. My first Parkrun was a good experience, the lady who organises ours had a good chat (she's not one of the fastest either) and was very interested to hear about c25k - lots of people haven't heard of it and it's good to spread the word. Most people are friendly and as I'm normally a lone runner I appreciate the chance to glean tips from other more experienced runners. It's all good. :-)

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