Wimped out of the park run - then ran my fastest 5k

I decided to pluck up the courage to register for my local Parkrun yesterday and then was quite relieved when it looked like my registration wasn't going to come through in time................ but then the emails arrived last night so this morning my daughter and I went along to the local park - about a 15 minute drive away, arriving about 5 minutes before it started.

I had been expecting about 80 people but there were quite a lot more and they all looked really fit and raring to go! A few of them were dressed in Union Jack t-shirts or shorts or flags for the Jubilee which was nice.

We lined up at the back of the group and set off.............straight into a steep slope! Now I really don't like hills, especially not at the start of a run, and everyone had set off at quite a good pace. I got to the top of the slope (only about 300 yards) and gave up.

Just like that.

I don't know why but I just couldn't face struggling along at the back and coming in last.

After I'd stopped and gone back to join Mr Locket and the other children, I noticed the runners coming back down the slope and although most of them were speeding away at the front (even the ones pushing buggies) there were some slower ones going at my sort of pace so I probably should have just kept going.

I was really frustrated with myself for giving up and immediately began to doubt my ability to run at all so, like they recommend when you fall off a horse, I was determined to go straight out for a run as soon as I got home.

My daughter had decided that she didn't really fancy running so I set off by myself which was unusual. The first mile was really tough - slightly uphill part way and my legs were hurting from the start so I was doubting whether I could keep going. Endomondo told me I had done the first mile in 12 minutes 10 seconds which was fairly average for me and I began to feel better about it all.

I had gone back to listening to Laura on week 9 as I felt that I needed some support on this run and the 5 minute encouragements were really helpful. I did the second mile quite a bit faster at 11m36s - possibly because it was flatter than the first mile or possibly because by then I was running along the main road through the village so I was definitely on show!

I was a bit worried that I was going to lose motivation as Laura started to wind down the podcast and tell me how well I had DONE when I knew I needed to keep on running through the warm down walk and maybe a bit longer to cover the 5k, but I just kept on putting one foot in front of the other and didn't even give in and go home when I ran past the top of my street.

My third mile was my fastest at 11m14s and I finished 5k in 35m57s - my fastest time ever by a minute or two so I was really chuffed - especially after my failed parkrun.

I think I'll go and have a practice run of the route before I try an official parkrun again. I have a feeling there would be a few more hills round the course so I would need to be prepared for that.

Overall I'm really pleased with today's run - even if it was my second attempt!


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6 Replies

  • Shame you felt you had to stop during the park run but GOOD on you for going for a run when you got home. A fab time, you are faster than me!!! You should be proud of yourself :) Also, a big pat on the back for going along in the first place..it's not something that is that easy to do!!!!

    Do you have someone that could go with you next time to encourage you (another adult)? Does help running with someone to spur you on

  • Oh, your initial feelings at the park run sounded a bit like my scarey dream. Thank goodness you decided to go out and do your 5k and come in with a fantastic time! Now you can be really proud of yourself; I bet loads of people on the parkrun didn't even do that time! You are a gutsy lady!

  • Oh I feel for you, I hated ups at the best of times but right at the start its enough to put anyone off. Well done on going straight out when you got home though, it was so the right thing to do. I was very nervous when I did my first (only so far) ParkRun, my fear was tripping someone up or falling flat on my face, WHY? who knows!! I now do what I am terming as interval training which has 3 very steep ups and downs in it which I jog in loops along with a 15 minute warm up to get to this area. So why not get down to the ParkRun route and have a few practice runs at that nasty up, it will put paid to your worries. I also walked the route first and then went back and jogged it on my own, the following week I ran it, it was fun too, but then why shouldn't it have been I love jogging and I'm pretty sure you do too. Good luck for your next run no matter where it is. :)

  • I think we can all put ourselves into your shoes and do exactly what the same as you did with the Parkrun. I personally would have gone home and sulked until hubby forced me out for a run so you did better than me on that score ;)

    I agree with the others, running the route on a different day may help prepare you as will going along with another adult who will go at your pace.

    At my first Parkrun I went right to the back and as we set off I asked the couple of ladies near me if they had run it before, they had and I said it was my first time. They kindly said I could run with them. This helped me tremendously and I went on to finish the run ahead of them. I was very thankful to them at the finish line and I now run with one of them occasionally during the week, so well worth breaking the ice.

  • Well done for doing the 5k at home after dropping out of the Parkrun ... I'd have probably medicated myself with ice cream. Get back on the Parkrun horse too though ..I'm hooked ... The cheer I get at the end of each of the 10 I've done is v. uplifting ,,, OK they might have been cheering that they could packup but seeing as how they stayed around chatting for at least 15 min more before they started. I've come 922/922 but I still love it.

  • Agree that it might be a good idea to go and do the run in advance so you know you can do it but another thought -you can listen to Laura as you go round. She might help you stay on track.

    It is important to go slowly at the start and not be tempted to try and keep up.

    There is probably a jubilee run on Tuesday. Why not give it a try?

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