The Park Run is a nationwide event that goes on right under your noses every weekend, before you’ve even surfaced from your Saturday snoozefest, hundreds of thousands of runners are finishing a timed 5k run in a park near you. GoodGym is also a nationwide event which I’ve previously written about (article here) it’s a charity and it’s free to participate in. So you can imagine how smug I feel having done both of these events before lunchtime…
ParkRun @ Ashton Court
A quick weather check on Friday night confirmed there was a two hour spell of sunshine appearing on Saturday morning. It’s a fact, we are in short supply of sunshine at the moment, so I set my alarm clock for an 8am start – ON A SATURDAY, I KNOW! – in order to make the 9am race kick off at Ashton Court. The course in Ashton Court is challenging, the first 2.5 km is just a continuous hill climb and so it becomes survival of the fittest pretty quickly.
On Saturday there were 252 runners altogether which was a great turnout considering the dwindling temperatures and gusty winds. The best thing about the Park Runs is the fact that you’re timed so when you finish the run you pick up a bar code and show your printed off bar code to get an official time as well as a whole barrage of stats. If you love your running stats like me, you’ll be hooked on this. An email arrives in your inbox telling you what position you came, how well you did for your age group and ofcourse your time. You can then log onto the website and look at the full table – which I did, for an unacceptably long time.
This year for me is all about crunching down my 5k and 10k times, with a view to competing in some 10k races including the Bristol 10k. I will also be entering in for a half-marathon, people have mentioned to me the Relish Running Races in and around Bath aswell as the Neolithic Half-Marathon which starts at the North of Salisbury and ends at Stonehenge. The Neolithic half marathon would be amazing to do, but it’s in May, shall I do it?!
The 2nd half of my run was 10x stronger than the 1st half, I overtook a number of people forcing one girl to shout out NO! when I did. The guy who finished just before me said he saw me running down the hill and said he had to catch up with me, so clearly I provided some motivation for some people which is good to know! Equally I ticked some boxes for my own PBs, I really wasn’t looking to do that well but it turns out that keeping up the circuits and spin classes during the week has helped me out here.
With an average pace of 8:38 I was already pretty chuffed. The PBs on my 1 mile (6’51) and 1/2 (3’16) were pretty unexpected I have to admit!
Good Gym @ Brandon Park
Driving back from the Park Run, I realised I had plenty of time to get back, drop off the car and head down to Roll for the Soul for a round of GoodGym. This week we ran to Brandon Park which was a 1k run from our meeting point, with an added run around the park. We then settled into some serious bramble hacking and pond weeding, it’s a glamorous life but someone’s got to do it.
I wrote the Run Report for GoodGym this week, “Massive [Bramble] Attack” check it out here!
What’s the GoodGym all about? Read about it here
Find out more about Park Run here
Hungry after a long bike ride or run? Meet at Roll for the Soul for a delicious meal…