After 11 days off with the flu my first run back was the Rutland Water Parkrun, thinking that the fresh countryside air would clear the rest out of my system. Rutland Water holds good and bad running memories for me, in that I completed my 20 mile London Marathon long run there on a stormy March day a few years ago. Running over the damn I remember not being able to feel my eyelashes it was so windy!
I turned up, parked easily and followed the runners to the start line, about a 5-10 minute walk away from the carpark it was the perfect warm-up. I was there a little later than I would usually for my first-time at a parkrun – I’m not sure if there was a briefing but I wouldn’t have made it anyway. At the same time I figure I’m extremely unlikely to come first so I’ll just follow the other runners. The pre-parkrun briefing took place while we were all lined up and the next thing we were off..
Due to still not feeling myself I planned to take it steady so I plodded along taking in the air and the scenery. Around a mile in we turned left and headed out along the damn for half a mile. A lovely morning meant there was a low windy across the reservoir so it was a pleasant plod! Half a mile later we reached the turning point and headed back along the damn. At the two mile mark we were off them damn for a straight mile to the finish line. Finishing nicely in 29.05 I was happy to finish but also to complete my first run in what felt like some time.
If I wasn’t feeling so ill (and sorry for myself) the course had potential for a PB. Even though I spent 15 minutes coughing afterwards I was quite happy with my plod and still coming in under 30 minutes.
Parking for parkrun was reduced to £1 and runners had to visit the fishing shop for ticket validation. I liked the 1km markers .. though I work in miles which I found confusing at first. From the organisers/volunteers perspective runners placing their finish tokens in order which would make it so much easier for them to be sorted through. Plenty of people took part, even some ‘ramblers’ which I found really interesting. Overall a happy, friendly parkrun!