(please note the small ‘p’, I have been reprimanded on my incorrect use of the capital ‘P’ when writing ‘parkrun’. I promise to stick to the small ‘p’ from now on, and please ignore any previous references to ‘Parkrun’. Tsk.)
Something is happening. Maybe it’s the running club. Maybe it’s the swimming. Maybe it’s sticking to four runs a week. Maybe it’s the push of running in company. Maybe it’s losing a bit of weight. I don’t know exactly what it is, but I have been bagging myself some PBs up at Hilly Fields parkrun. Saturday was a particularly happy run for me, as I pushed just under the 26 minute mark, with a run of 25.42. My goal for a long time has been a 25 minute 5k, but I never imagined that would be at Hilly Fields (the clue is in the name), but I might, just might, make that happen. One of the most interesting, amusing and fun aspects of this for me is running with different people. For a long time I have been following the same muddy legs around the course, but I now have new runners to pull me up the hills with their encouragement and find myself crossing the line with some people who might previously have gone home by the time I stop my watch. Some of these are people I would watch heading for the finish as I tackled the hill, but now I seem to be catching up… As we wait around to get our barcodes scanned, I find myself being congratulated by people who finish ‘up there’ at the front, all saying how well my running is going. This is what I love about parkrun, people notice how you’re doing, they recognise when you’ve worked hard and when you’ve managed a good run and are not shy about coming forward to say ‘well done’, whether you are a front-runner or a new-comer trying a run-walk approach.
The tricky side of getting a bit faster is keeping it up. I think we will be reverting to our original course this Saturday, now it’s dried out a little, and I wonder if this will make a difference to my time. All I can do is take another dose of performance enhancing training and just go for it.