First park run

First park run

Graduating this week gave me the confidence to go on the local park run. Yes, I know, you don't need to be able to run all the way but I couldn't take it on unless I knew I could. What a difference from C25K running! It was in the morning (I usually give my body lots of time to wake up before running); at a fixed time (so telling my body "You're going to run NOW, not when you feel up to it"); no five minute warm up; cross-country, weaving through trees rather than the flat asphalt I'm used to; running with over a hundred people (a lot of them SLOWER than me!) so I couldn't just settle into my pace and tick off the kilometres; having to SPRINT to get past slower runners (and walkers) amongst the trees; knowing there was no way I could cheat and skip the last hundred metres if I misjudged my pace for the last kilometre - and just where was the finish? Well, thanks to the C25K programme I took it all in my stride and after a slow first kilometre (partly deliberate strategy, partly because of all the other runners) I settled down to my pace and had enough in the tank that my last split was my quickest - and under 6 minutes :)

To anyone else thinking of having a go but like me, not sure, let me tell you that I clocked in at the end of my run, got my backpack and warmed down for at least 5 minutes then wandered over to the finish area to cheer on others who were still finishing for probably another 15 minutes. If you've made it through most of C25K you're probably ready to take it on - there was even a pacer doing (I think) 1 minute run / 1 minute walk.

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12 Replies

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  • It sounds amazing Now-runner_NeedsAttn

    Would love to have a go myself sometime but I work every weekend :'(

    Well done for finishing and well done on your quick time. :-)

  • Well, after clicking "refresh" on the results page for the hundredth time I can now tell THE WHOLE WORLD that I finished 203rd of 358 runners, 6th out of 10 in my age category.

    WOO and HOO :)

    I'd like to thank everyone here for their advice and support, Jo Whiley for seeing me through those early weeks, Sarah Millican for stepping in when hearing the same words for the fifth or sixth time got too much when I repeated some weeks, Laura for "a bit of the other" :o in Week 8... <breaks into sobs, grabs putty medal and dashes off stage>

  • Well done and congrats on your first Parkrun 😀 Do be sure to volunteer too as it's such fun

    Don't skimp on your warm up! That way injury lies.

  • Absolutely. I was stretching and trying to keep moving but at the same time nervous so not wanting to wander off and miss the start or something. I was also chatting with other runners to find out more about it. Next week I will walk about and do a little jogging before the start.

  • What a great achievement. I am sure most of us, once we find out that organised park runs exist, begin to wander if we will be actually brave enough to participate in one. The thought of running with even one other person daunts me, never mind several hundred. The fear of doing something new for the first time, I am sure, is scary for many of us, no matter what our age.

    So, I admire you for biting the bullet and even more so for finishing so well. Out of interest, what time did you run?

  • I did 33:29 (in the same ballpark as my Wk9 runs earlier this week) but the times of the other runners go out to over over 50 minutes.

  • Impressed. If I can get near (lol) to your time I may be brave enough to participate in a park run.

  • I was trying to make it clear that you don't have to be anywhere near my time, and not necessarily able to run 5k non-stop, before you can take part. There was everyone there from the sub-20 minute guys lapping me to mums with 5 year olds. I have no idea how quick or slow you are but at Week 6 it could be on your horizon though I realise it's a bit "public" for someone who has only just got brave enough to run through their village :) If nothing else you could go along to watch, then decide if it's for you. It might give you something to aim for after graduation.

  • It is certainly an aim and I might heed your advice and go along and watch first.

  • Congratulations :)

  • Great post.

  • Postscript: my leg muscles were quite sore yesterday and I thought it would take the usual two or three days to recover (they have hurt at least slightly every day since I started C25K) but this morning my legs feel fine. Is this the elusive "fitness" that people talk about? ;-)

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