Fareham parkrun #110 Run Report Alan Bullock

“It’s a run, not a race!” Reflections on Fareham parkrun Number 110
In the parting words of my old parkrun friend Emma Powell, “he’s got enough material for a sequel to The Hobbit”. So, I’ll try to edit this little report down to sensible proportions.
The long-awaited Spring sunshine brought us out in force yesterday and the field of 265 runners and walkers was, by my calculation, the fifth highest in Fareham Parkrun’s two-year history. When I arrived, Julie was busy diverting drivers away from the chock-a-block Cams Mill car park and it was a colourful and animated scene, with people of all ages and abilities converging, conversing or warming up in their various ways. This is what parkrun is all about, isn’t it? It always feels very social and inclusive. And also, crucially, it’s a run, not a race - or at least, that’s the theory. It was in that context that I loved the brilliant little Freudian slip during the pre-run briefing by Run Director Tom Mellor, when he said: “Before the race … whoops, it’s not a race.”
There was a really nice vibe out on the course, especially getting cheered on by all the hi-viz heroes like Mike Shaw at PJ’s Corner, Ed Willmott by the creekside and Kerry Brown at the turn-point. I always like chatting to Ed during post-run coffee. He’s been volunteering whilst recovering from surgery and it was clear how much he’d enjoyed encouraging everyone and trying to make us “feel that little bit better” as we went past. That’s another of the joys of parkrun – volunteering can be as satisfying as running.
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Kerry Brown, today's turnpoint marshal
The Cams Mill is a godsend for Fareham parkrun and a great place to catch up with old and new mates. Over coffee, Ollie Holt was in particularly good spirits after smashing his PB by 35 seconds. He lives in Drayton but likes running at Fareham because he finds it so friendly. And, with its out-and-back course, “you always know when it’s half way”. He also made a new friend who latched on to him during the run, used him as a pacemaker and complimented him afterwards on “running like a metronome”. I enjoyed Stephanie Monks’ graphic account of her mid-run misadventure with a bramble too. Quite how it cut her hand and then got stuck to her bottom still intrigues me. Meanwhile, Rachael Hughes’ moment of the week was the little girl who gave her a high-five, which Rachael reciprocated. The little girl seemed really thrilled to get a high-five back and Rachael was thrilled that she was thrilled. I thought that was cute!
There was an impressive turnout by 30 participants from Run Verity, a mixed-gender club with runners of all abilities. Coach Verity told me how 17 of their cohort had just graduated from their beginners’ programme by getting from zero to 5km in eight weeks, while the others came to run and support them. I also talked to Nikki, who has been with them for four years. For Nikki it’s been all about “learning how to run properly and injury-free”. And what she hadn’t expected was to make so many new friends along the way too. She also told me how she now finds herself spotting when other runners aren’t quite doing it right. This led me to reflect on how I’m probably doing lots of things wrong myself.
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Returning to the theme of “it’s a run not a race”:
• Am I bothered when I get overtaken in the final kilometre every week by that chap with the double buggy? Of course not.
• Do I look back nostalgically to 2017 when I was often Fareham’s fastest OAP? Well, just a bit. I was only third-fastest OAP yesterday but, as Julie Salt always says to me consolingly, “at least it was still a podium finish”.
• And do I mind being beaten most weeks by my 11-14 year-old rivals Isobel Bennett and Anastasia Jensen? Nooo!
In fact, over coffee I chatted with Anastasia and her parents, Slavena and Robert. Anastasia told me about her “trick”, which involves following hapless old runners like me, copying our stride pattern and then overtaking us. Then if we try to catch up, she sprints. She also took the mickey out of my rather irritating breathing pattern, which others have likened to a steam train. Pondering over this as I walked back to the car, I came to the conclusion that, after all these years and 81 parkruns, I need to take a leaf out of Vikki and Verity’s book and learn how to run properly.
Being well-travelled parkrunners themselves, Slavena and Robert summed up how they perceive the parkrun culture and philosophy. For them it’s a wonderful way of starting the weekend. It gets people active and enjoying a healthy lifestyle and it’s so supportive, regardless of “whether you’re a front-runner or at the back of the pack”. They find it a great way to bond as a family too.
And when I asked Anastasia what she liked about parkrun, she replied in a single word: “Everything”.
Alan Bullock
Fareham parkrun
Event number 110
21st April 2018
This week 265 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 37 were first timers and 35 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 14 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 25 volunteers:

Tom MELLOR • Julie SALT • John SALT • Margaret MCGILP • Angus MCGILP • Mike CREEDY • David MACSWAYNE • Alison MACSWAYNE • Kerry BROWN • Edward WILLMOTT • Kathy O'LOUGHLIN • Ian WRIGHT • Mike SHAW • David WALTERS • Hannah HOLLIDAY • Melissa BARHAM • Brendan TUTTIETT • Emma POWELL • Louise STEWART • Jane BASCOMBE • Alan BULLOCK • John FAIRHURST • Anne FAIRHURST • Michael MOODY • Phil BRIEN

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Fareham parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Lachlan WELLINGTON who recorded a time of 15:47 on 31st December 2016 (event number 40).
The female record is held by Jen ELKINS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 29th April 2017 (event number 58).
The Age Grade course record is held by Penny FORSE who recorded 95.49% (22:34) on 15th July 2017 (event number 69).

Fareham parkrun started on 9th April 2016. Since then 3,943 participants have completed 20,306 parkruns covering a total distance of 101,530 km, including 4,292 new Personal Bests.

 

Fareham parkrun #109 Run Report Danielle Ward

Some people like to set themselves goals to keep them running throughout out the year. Fortunately, I am one of those people. This year I have pledged to run a new parkrun each month throughout 2018.

Fareham was chosen for April and it did not disappoint.

Parking at Lysses car park was easy, as there were ample spaces for everyone. Then it was simply a case of following the roundabout until I found Cams Mill pub. This was not nearly as complicated as I thought it was going to be.

Upon arrival I was met with the friendliest group of parkrunners that I have had the pleasure to meet. "There are toilets inside and an honest box for teas and coffees. Help yourselves." An honesty box? How refreshing.

The run briefing welcomed all of us tourists and those who were first timers. The positivity and encouragement from the volunteers was clear throughout. Local runners were even encouraged to leave spare barcodes with the volunteers in case they forgot theirs in the future.

The smaller events are great; there were just 214 runners at event #109. This meant that there was plenty of space for everyone. I found that I was able to run at a pace that suited me, without getting in the way of other runners.
If you want a course that is going to provide views, then this is it; a golf course to look at on one side and the creek on the other. There were plenty of boats to look at along the way, too.

The route started on pavement, allowing runners to warm up at relative ease. The majority of the course was on gravel tracks that ran alongside the creek. There were parts that ran through trees and sections that opened up to show you the view. It was a simple out-and-back course but the variety of the course surroundings meant that this location was by no means tedious.

Upon returning to the finish line I was met with cheers and clapping, even an event photographer! Once I had sorted myself out enough to get my barcode scanned, I noticed the PB bell. I spent a while there and the volunteers were lovely enough to take my photo. I attended this event with a friend and even more volunteers offered to take photos of us at the end.

Fareham parkrun, you were full of great views, fabulous organisation and friendly locals. I look forward to returning in the future to take advantage of the views in better weather.

Danielle Ward

 

Fareham parkrun #109 Run Report Isabel Gardner

A Misty Morning at Fareham Creek

The unexpected sight of thick mist greeted me when I opened the curtains this morning and it brought a definite chill to the air once we ventured out to Fareham parkrun. However, it also lent a very atmospheric look to the still waters and reflections which are overlooked by this scenic parkrun route which is enjoyable in all weathers.
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One of the joys of parkrun is bumping into friends and running buddies wherever you go – you never quite know who is going to be there and I was delighted to see a few of my fellow Portsmouth Joggers turn up at Fareham today. We are spoiled with such a rich choice of parkruns in our area offering us plenty of variety from week to week, but you can nearly always be sure to see familiar faces whichever one you choose to go to, plus the friendly faces amongst the regulars at each venue.

So the briefings were done and off we went into the mist amongst speedies, not-quite-so-speedies, walkers, families, buggies and dogs, all out to get their weekly 5k fix. Through the trees, along past the golf course, sploshing through the puddles and up to the turnaround point and then back again, all to the cheers of the splendid marshals along the way and to the shouts of encouragement between friends and to the front runners, back walkers and everyone in between.

I had a good run, in the company of Gissele who is a friend from Pompey Joggers (and long-time parkrunner but first-timer at Fareham), although there wasn’t much breath for chatting as we pushed ourselves along the course. I wasn’t really pb chasing today but as the run progressed I felt it may be a possibility and when our respective partners (Colin and Ian – much faster than us and long since finished!) were waiting to run us in as we emerged from the woods, I thought I might be in with a chance! Urged on by Colin I did my best and gave it a final push which left me gasping for breath at the finish line but alas no pb and still chasing that elusive sub 30 minutes! Another time!

And then to the post-run refreshments in the Cams Mill, always an enjoyable conclusion to the morning’s efforts and for the first time this year we sat outside as the mist was now clearing and the weather was definitely brightening up. A great start to the weekend and all over for another week, and thank you to all the volunteers at Fareham who made it possible.
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(Photo courtesy of M Parsons)
Fareham parkrun
Event number 109
14th April 2018
This week 215 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 17 were first timers and 36 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 22 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 25 volunteers:

Andrew SMITH • John SALT • Margaret MCGILP • Angus MCGILP • David MACSWAYNE • Alison MACSWAYNE • Hugh MCMULLAN • Peter ADAMS • Kerry BROWN • Edward WILLMOTT • Kathy O'LOUGHLIN • Ian WRIGHT • Mike SHAW • Alison LAWRENCE • David MALLARD • Sue BADDELEY • Andrew LOCKWOOD • Rachael HUGHES • Louise STEWART • Martin PARSONS • Georgina HUTBER • Michael MOODY • Phil BRIEN • Luke THOMPSON • Sandy THOMSON

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Fareham parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Lachlan WELLINGTON who recorded a time of 15:47 on 31st December 2016 (event number 40).
The female record is held by Jen ELKINS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 29th April 2017 (event number 58).
The Age Grade course record is held by Penny FORSE who recorded 95.49% (22:34) on 15th July 2017 (event number 69).

Fareham parkrun started on 9th April 2016. Since then 3,906 participants have completed 20,041 parkruns covering a total distance of 100,205 km, including 4,257 new Personal Bests.

 

Fareham parkrun #108 Run Report Andrew D Smith

300...
Having just achieved my 300th parkrun. I looked at my early stats. Good to know that in my 61st year I'm quicker than when I started in 26/06/2010 when Robert Spencer asked me to come with him to Eastleigh parkrun back in the day. I can still remember all the negatives thoughts I took with me that morning. What am I doing here? They look different to me. Why have they got special trainers? They all seem to know each other, and I don't really know anyone else and my mate has just wandered off too!
When Julie Salt and I set up Fareham parkrun, we were determined to make sure that Fareham parkrun is a friendly and welcoming parkrun. Clearly the Cams Mill pub helps a lot in that it provides a focus to our run and post run. We have runners and walkers of all abilities these days and parkrun has transformed itself over the 8 years.
I'm delighted to still be running and volunteering and that parkrun touches so many people in its various ways. Power to the people and keeeeeeeeeep runnnnnnnning...and Happy 2nd birthday to Fareham parkrun too.

Fareham parkrun
Event number 108
7th April 2018
This week 210 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 27 were first timers and 37 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 19 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 24 volunteers:

John MACINNES • Margaret MCGILP • Angus MCGILP • Edward CASPER • Alison MACSWAYNE • Peter ADAMS • Ian WRIGHT • Mike SHAW • David WALTERS • Melissa BARHAM • Peter STODDARD • Louise STEWART • Nick READINGS • Lee GILBERT • Jane BASCOMBE • Peter BASCOMBE • Katherine SAVAGE • Georgina HUTBER • Michael MOODY • Neil MASSON • Phil BRIEN • Lorraine MASSON • Trudy BISHOP • Mary BRIER

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Fareham parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Lachlan WELLINGTON who recorded a time of 15:47 on 31st December 2016 (event number 40).
The female record is held by Jen ELKINS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 29th April 2017 (event number 58).
The Age Grade course record is held by Penny FORSE who recorded 95.49% (22:34) on 15th July 2017 (event number 69).

Fareham parkrun started on 9th April 2016. Since then 3,889 participants have completed 19,826 parkruns covering a total distance of 99,130 km, including 4,221 new Personal Bests.

 

Fareham parkrun #108 Run Report Katie Savage

I love Fareham parkrun. It's my home parkrun and the place I first ran with others and I haven't looked back since. I love running with others it is so much more fun that running alone and I am amazed at how such an individual past time has such a community feel to it. How something that you have to do and no one can do for you, which often involves your own headspace and thoughts, is also something which can be shared, uniting people who would not normally mix. Fareham parkrun is this community at its best with all ages, abilities not only represented but doing it in style.

Today's run had two sides to it for me. Firstly I took time to appreciate the community and made a point of encouraging everyone I could. Thankfully now I know a lot of names so was able to make some of the encouragement individual but also those I don't know who were doing so well, the speedies as they whizzed past me on their way back and those at the back who were achieving just as much as those at the front. We all completed 5k after all! And also the volunteers who had given their time to enable us to get out and run on what was finally a warmer day (short sleeves were a good call this morning!).
And that leads me on to the second side of the run for me this morning. Fareham parkrun is a brilliant setting which I had never explored before my first parkrun and this morning I took time to smell the roses (OK it's too early for roses I know but you get what I mean!) This morning, especially on the way back in after all the runners had passed me by I took the time to look around me and enjoy the brilliant place we have to run Fareham parkrun. The blossom was out, but did you notice the really pretty white blooms right next to the path? The tide in the creek was out, but did you notice the man digging for bait in the mud? The sky was overcast but did you notice the sun peeking through? I also saw a gaggle of geese fly over did anyone else spot them?
There was a definite sense of spring being in the air this morning, with new buds and new life all around and yet there was also still the reminder of the season we are leaving with bare trees and barren branches. The new season is beginning but is having to push to establish itself, to take hold. And this made me think of running and how perhaps now is the time for a new season for many. It might be reaching for a new PB, it might be taking time to smell the roses, it might be running without stopping but don't forget to push to take hold of the new season whatever it may be for you.
Finally I promised my son I would mention him in the run report as he did his first ever parkrun today so well done Jez for smashing my PB!

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