Parkrun Number 50.
Another weekend break meant another opportunity to try out another Parkrun. This time it took me to Edinburgh.
Located between two (Edinburgh and Portobello) I messaged both on Facebook prior to visiting to find out the situation with the busses. Edinburgh was the preferred option with the Parkrun being held alongside the beach it didn’t seem too much trouble to get there – bar the mile or so walk to the start-line for the bus stop, of course this was a ‘good warm-up!’
The best thing about a Scottish Parkrun – 9.30am start! While writing this piece (on the train home, gin in hand) I decided to ‘Google’ why this is but I don’t think there’s a particular reason. Anyhow, I wasn’t going to complain of a lie-in!
I arrived pretty early and took the mile or so walk down to the beach area. Initially I thought I’d run back though that was until I realised it was a complete downhill to the beach, meaning a tough uphill after Parkrun. It was easy to find, though further down the promenade than I thought. It was a beautiful morning with a light breeze along the coastline, in my books, perfect running conditions. The last time I was by the coast running was in Norfolk in December, during my 40 day streak it was bitterly cold with a strong headwind so this was worlds away.
Making it to the start-line around 9, the runners started to arrive I soaked up the coast, put my hoodie and water somewhere where I would remember them after (!) and we were called over to listen to the first-timers briefing. A brief explanation of the course – an out and back route – and we were lining up ready for the go.
All of the usual announcements, clapping of the fantastic volunteers and 3,2,1 we’re off!
It started off fairly slow with the amount of people trying to get past each other but the path soon widened and I started to find my flow. There was a slight headwind which provided a much needed cool-down in the glorious sunshine. On and on the promenade went … seriously it seemed to go on for quite some time, though when I checked my watch I’d covered less than a mile!
Halfway we came upon the loop that would take us round and on to the home stretch. This is where it got hot! No headwind to run it to just sun, sun , sun! We shouldn’t, and I’m not, complaining but it took me by surprise for 1. Being in Scotland – isn’t it always cold?!?! 2. Its actually the first spring day we’ve had.
Crossing the finish line, I was amazed by the organisation. Knowing that they get big numbers I thought the scanning would take some time, but this was done super quickly by the lovely volunteers. An entire 660 people took part in Edinburgh Parkrun, the largest turnout I’ve ever seen! There was even Quality Street going at the end, a great addition/treat before having a sip of water and crawling my way up the hill to the bus stop.
Results came through late in the evening (the run director had told us this in the briefing and obviously, she has a life outside of Parkrun) – 27.30 which I was pretty happy about, considering I’ve been lacking mojo recently – I also made negative splits the whole way around, for the first time in ages.
One announcement that shocked me was that the Parkrun wasn’t getting enough volunteers. It seemed crazy that a Parkrun with 660 participants and not enough people are coming forward on a weekly basis. Next weekend I’ll be writing a run report for my home run and in a few weekends time I’m down to be on finish tokens. Admittedly, I don’t volunteer very often but it’s super important to keep our local Parkrun’s going.
Along with my 50th Parkrun in total – finally reached the big 50 – it was the 10th different Parkrun that I’ve taken part in.
Happy me woke up on Sunday morning to my ‘welcome to club 50’ email from Parkrun!