Couch to 5K
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First ever Park Run- why did I wait so long.

I went to my first Park Run today after starting C25K about 3 years ago and despite running 3 times a week I have been apprehensive about going to a park run. I had plenty of excuses, its in the next town, no direct bus route, too far to walk or cycle, parking a problem. All rubbish so today I bit the bullet and if there is anyone else reading this who is apprehensive don't be. Like others have said before they are great events run by friendly welcoming bunch of fellow runners. My nearest local Park Run is Woodley in Berkshire. Some friends of my sons were there so that helped meeting them, but the volunteers were great, lots of first timers like me given a talk about the course and procedure. The course is three laps around the park, couple of slight up hills nothing drastic so generally fairly flat course. Today I was in luck as once a month they have pacers so as my average is about 32 minutes for 5 Km I deicide to run with the 31 minute pacer but after a couple of K's I left him to catch the next pacer the 29 minute guy. I learnt something, my usual lone runs I run at about 5:45 m/Km pace for the first couple of K then I slow down. Today it was the other way around running at about 6:10 m/Km for the first couple of K's then speeding up to 5:50 m/km and it was much better energy wise. I finished 137 out of 211 runners in 29m 35s which is close to my PB. I was 3rd for my age group VM60-65. So very happy and now hooked on Park Runs. They even had a volunteer with people who wanted to run 1 minute and walk 2 minutes, so a great event for all types and stages of runners. I will try to go every week now and I promise to volunteer to marshal at a future event as we should all put back into these great schemes. So if anyone is apprehensive about going to a Park Run, I know its been said before don't be. Happy running everyone.

16 Replies
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What a brilliant post. I'm really pleased (although not surprised) that it all went so well for you. I LOVE Parkrun 😘

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Thanks GKG I intend to go as many times as I can

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Completely agree with you. I did my 17th Parkrun today. I haven't missed one since starting at the beginning of April, and volunteered once when I had a 10k race on the Sunday. Wierdly, my time today was just about identical to yours!

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Hi SL I did reply to your post yesterday but it seems to have got lost in the internet ether. Hopefully like you I wont miss too many from now on, not sure about running if its raining hard but i will face that when it happens. Spooky about the similar times like we were in a virtual park run together. I registered my running club as NHS C25K as in my view all us on this forum run with that great club.

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Here here! What a fabulous post and a great time too... So glad you got up the courage to go... Well done!!

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Thanks JJ I shouldn't have been apprehensive after all the posts I have read on here about people being welcomed to Park Runs, not anymore I will try to do as many as I can from now on.

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Parkrun is a wonderful celebration of running and I am glad you have discovered it at last.

Keep running, keep smiling.

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Thanks IT. I always run with a smile on my face its such a great feeling running and more so at park runs

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well said about parkrun :D couldn't agree more ,was the best thing I did by going , alas cut short due to injury but slowly getting back there and looking forward to returning to parkrun ..

Superb PB sub 30 in anyones book is a really great time :D getting sub 30 for me was such a huge thing ,took me a good day or two to sink in :D well done again

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Thanks SR I was surprised by the sub 30 time didn't expect that when I arrived but the atmosphere of running with others I think must spur you on that's all I can put it down to. Only problem now is that is recorded as my PB for the Woodley park run so now I have to beat it somewhen.

Hope you get fit again soon and back to your local park run.

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thats great! well done, a brilliant time too! Its definitely a fantastic idea and i'm glad you braved it and enjoyed it too!!

i'm on my 42nd parkrun today, if you ever come back to the IOW , do come & visit us! its usually at Newport near the river medina, but cos of the festival(ground chewed up at the mo!) we are at Appley for a while! it was a flat route but recently they have changed it and its now full of hills! Ran with my friend today so just a steady one, next week i will go for it a bit more though!! :)

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Thanks aliboo. The next time I am over visiting my sisters I will take my running gear if it includes a Saturday morning. I know,the seaclose park at Newport, I also know Appley area but cant imagine where the park run would be there unless as you say there is some running up the hill through the trees.

No plans to visit this year but you never know.

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would be nice to see you! :) yep, its partly up the hills and through the trees, plus along the front and round the beach huts! a very wiggly route which has us pushed hard!! :X :)

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Congratulations - and brilliant time! It's taken me 2 years to get sub 30!!!

You are quite right though, they are brilliant. I LOVE parkruns and would feel quite lost without my regular Saturday morning fix. I try to volunteer once a month in a non-running volunteer role and really, that is as much fun as running. (We have a lot of serial volunteers who come and marshall each week - I can understand why now.)

Welcome to the parkrun family! It's addictive. :)

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Thanks agedsnailpace I am sure they will become addictive and like you I plan to be a non-runner volunteer when I do it. My plan was every 10 or so runs then volunteer but I have added my name to the volunteers email so if they are short one week I can step in.

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Great post....no excuses for me as the park run is in the park where I run, literally 5 minutes from my door. What holds me back is that I run in such a solitary bubble I'm not sure if I fancy having a load of people round me.

But everyone raves about them. My brother's been marshalling these things for years down in Kent and he doesn't even run.

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