So, off we set on a parkrun away day…David and Danny decided that we would head into Surrey to go to Frimley Lodge parkrun – now the “home” run of our first parkrun 250 club member, Darren. It was cold, so long legs were the order of the day, there then ensued a whole “long sleeved top under 100 club top” debate…I took mine off in the end. Such decisions…good job I had had my rice pudding for breakfast.
More decisions were made for me in the shape of the three of us running a lap of the course with the intention of a reccy and a warm-up. I am very glad we did, as we saw the canal path before it was full of runners!
Anyway, soon enough we had listened to the first time runner briefing and after a “welcome” from the Race Director for the day to us visiting from Bushy, we were off to the start. The course isn’t fast underfoot (though I think a slight downhill gain) and is rather twisty turny but there are marshalls and arrows, so no getting lost. You run in a melee around a football field at the start, then up onto the canal path, OMG! It’s so narrow and tree stumps everywhere!!! It’s so hairy scary, especially given you can’t really overtake anyone including people who set off nearer the front who clearly shouldn’t! Then you go through a lovely little wooded “cross country” area, over a weird hard to run on path during which time I feared for my ankles, through a quagmire squidgy bit and then finally over another football field. Oh, then you repeat it :) I rather like a multiple lap course I must admit…
I don’t know what I was thinking really about my pacing before the start, certainly the canal path on the first lap slowed me down when there was no over-taking but when I glanced at my watch at the start of the second lap, it said 14:01, so I was happy enough with that. I tried really hard to keep pushing but with half a mile to go I was really starting to feel tired. Soon enough though, the end was in sight. I pushed on and crossed the line, my official time was 27:56 – my fastest parkrun time since 22nd March 2008. I was over the moon :) I was even more pleased when I looked at my splits and saw my miles were 9:09, 9:05 and 9:04 (obviously plus the last bit), so pretty much even.
Then of course, the boys made me run another lap as a cool-down. It’s my favourite apparently. Ahem.
We headed off afterwards for a coffee and a chat with some of the Frimley Lodge volunteer team. By the time we got to the cafe, we had received our text messages from parkrun with our official times, super-quick service! All in all a lovely day, lovely run and great, friendly people. I would thoroughly recommend it if you fancy a visit to a different parkrun.