Spring has sprung so that only meant one thing on a Saturday morning ... the perfect day for parkrun! Up and dressed into my London Marathon finishers t-shirt from 2016, to celebrate the event that got me involved in running and a regular parkrunner, I make my way to Welland Park.
Found my spot at the start line – between 25 and 30 – and Paul takes his place for the briefing. All of the usual announcements, a clap for the marshals, a 50th parkrun for one runner then 3...2...1 off we go.
First lap is spent finding my pace and settling in to the run. One thing I notice – it's hot, really hot! My lace becomes undone (annoying) so I take a moment to re-lace before trying to catch up with the crowd I was with. Pushing on, at the turnaround point my mind wanders – urgh two more laps to go.
Heading past the tennis courts I spot a new sign that I've not seen before 'YOU'RE AWESOME' which put a smile on my face and made me feel awesome! Lap 2 feels like a struggle, it's really really hot now and I know that any minute I'll be overtaken by the, what I call, Harborough parkrun Elites. Surprisingly it isn't until I reach the turnaround tree that I get overtaken today.
Lap 2 over, I start on lap 3, knowing that the fast runners have finished it feels good to have the whole path to ourselves. Each week, on the final lap I make sure to take time to thank every course marshal who has given up their morning and today I do the same. I find doing this encourages other parkrunners to say thanks too which when you're on the marshal side is very much appreciated.
High-fiving Austin on my way around I knew it was the final time (until walking back to Tesco carpark!) that it was the last time I'd see this corner. With the finish line in sight I pick up the pace knowing that soon I can stop, hopefully for a breath of fresh air (the humidity didn't allow this!).
I've taken part in 10 different parkruns across the country but Harborough will always be my home! Along with our dedicated core team, fantastic volunteers and pretty park, there's two things that make our parkrun really unique, weekly pacers and the time zones at the start line.
Thanks to all the volunteers for once again putting on another great parkrun!