Is a Parkrun very different to running on pavements?

I have just completed week 9 and am hoping to stay focused by doing a local Parkrun in a week or 2. I have looked at the course and the course seems to be a miz of gravel, tarmac and grass.

I have thus far only run on pavements and pothole filled roads. Will I find the change to a multi surface run difficult and do I need to do any particular training for it? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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  • One of the Parkruns I do is on grass and some tarmac paths, the other one is through woodland so compacted earth (sometimes mud, if it's been raining) and gravel. The latter is my favourite even though I tend to come back with wet feet and muddy socks. I normally run on pavements and don't do any additional training for the Parkruns but other may take it more seriously than me.

  • You'll probably find the parkrun easier on your feet than pavements and roads - though if it's been wet, make sure you've got a bit of grip on your shoes, not like me last week with almost gripless shoes sliding around in a slick of mud!

    I went to look at my parkrun route (I downloaded a map from the website - it isn't marked as a parkrun on the ground except Sat mornings) and did a couple of test runs before I did the Saturday one, so I had an idea of how long it would take me (ages!), as I knew it had a steep hill in it, and I'd not run up hills before. A flat route would probably be fine though.

    I'll definitely go again - haven't decided yet whether to wait a week or two or not.

  • My local one is around the edge of the park on grass, a very short piece of pavement (bliss)then alongside the lake... Last Saturday was my first, and I was ankle deep in mud, fell over in it too; had aching muscles for a few days that I didn't know existed from the slip slidiing sideways... but everyone was friendly and helpful, especially the volunteers who had to wait for me bit still cheered me on!

    I will be going again, but debating this Saturday only because of the mud - sort of tempted to try Chelmsford as it looks like it may be less muddy, but not decided yet as I should catch up on sleep as going from earlies to 12 hour nights on Saturday,,, Decisions! :-)

  • I think the biggest thing about parkrun is it being an organised run, I can't see the surface is such a deal.

  • I find our pavements have cross slopes for drives and lumps from tree roots so aren't as even as you would think. On a Parkrun people have sussed the easiest route through any hazards so you can follow the pack.

    Main thing about a Parkrun is the friendly atmosphere. Give it a go!

  • Test drive it beforehand, oh that should be test run it!!! :) You'll have loads of fun and meet lots of like minded people, so just get out there and give it a go. Good luck.

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