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To park run or not to park run?

So I am ( fingers and toes crossed) on course to graduate on New Years Day - not the end of the world if it doesn’t happen but still feels so good to be at the end of this beginning rather than the very beginning going into the New Year like the previous two years - my local park run is having a New Year’s Day Run so I am wondering wether to graduate at this event - what’s putting me off is my local park run was on the BBC news as one of the hardest park runs in the country due to the mud. I would be gutted if I didn’t manage to run it all. Does muddy conditions really make it that much harder? Anyone ran more of a cross country route?

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I think if you are nervous at all then don’t do it as your graduation run. How horrible if you hated that specific run. That being said Parkrun is awesome but if you haven’t run the course before you might not feel comfortable running it as your graduation run. They will do the normal Saturday run as well so why not do that the Saturday after with no expectations attached?

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I think you are probably right - park run is going to be there every week - well around kids football which takes up every weekend! I have run the course before back when I was at school in the 90s 🤣🤣 hated it then! I think I wanted to make graduation more of an “event” but for the right reasons - not the wrong ones like not completing it or getting stuck in a muddy puddle

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I feel really nervous on the muddy bits I am getting better but I think I am worried I am going to fall and hurt myself 😬. Also amazingly I have been told our Parkrun is the hardest in the UK due to the last mile being straight uphill. I wonder if people just like to claim theirs is the hardest 😂

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Probably 🤣🤣🤣

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Running off-road is definitely harder going than surfaced runs, but so much more fun. If it really is a hard muddy run then it sounds as if trail shoes would be advisable.........so that might help you make a decision.

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To be honest where we live most of the routes are pretty much off road - I think maybe I’m making excuses and just not ready to run in front of people, which is a bit pathetic really but probably gives me my answer. Maybe when I am less self conscious about it all.

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Never feel pressured as a runner..........do it because YOU want to!

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Yes you are absolutely right - and I have enjoyed this programme so much because it is the only thing I do for me so why spoil it now

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Graduate and then do your first Park run as and when you feel ready for it... :)

Graduate on one of your favourite routes.. relax and enjoy it :) xxx

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Yes - I am going to do that! I want to go when I’m confident of finishing

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If you recall mercmancouchto5k tried a muddy and hilly parkrun at the end of last week and was disappointed at how much of a step up it was from W8 as he had to walk some sections.

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Yes I can remember now you’ve said! Definitely one for the future

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You’ve had some fabulous advice Zaza and I’m going to echo it. Your graduation run is like a lap of honour. You’ve already run 2 x 30 minutes so you know you can do it, so why pressurise yourself and make it harder than necessary? Graduate somewhere lovely, then give parkrun a go with no strings attached. If you struggle and need to walk, it won’t matter. 👍

Have fun and go smash that graduation run! 🎉🏅👍😀

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This ^^^... Definitely this ^^^👍

I echo what Cheekychipmunks has said!

Like you said, the Park Run is there every week, so there's no need to put any pressure on yourself. Especially as it sounds like a tough one!

Enjoy your Graduation Run 🎉🎓🏃‍♀️🥉 👏💪

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Good luck whatever you decide to do. 😸

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Now just progress to your local parkrun on Sat. 9am. It’s a great community. Well done for completing the podcasts.

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Thank you 😊

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