Run Report #203 – 16th March 2019 by Nicky Garratt

It was an absolute pleasure being RD at the Market Harborough parkrun #203; it was also my last time as an RD, which brought about a number of mixed emotions. This is a brief history of my parkrun journey and what parkrun means to me.

Graham and I were given a kick up the backside from our sister-in-law (a keen runner and PE teacher) at Christmas time, back at the tail end of 2014. After finding every excuse possible, we decided that we probably should do some exercise; eat a bit more healthily and drink a little less wine! We started to run/walk to the next village, which was extremely challenging for us both. We then decided to invest in a couple of mountain bikes and then saw an advert in the Harborough Mail about a Sprint Triathlon (whatever that was) and thought we should set ourselves a goal. We signed up for the event, and started to take regular trips to Corby pool; neither of us were great at front crawl.

During this time, we met a very keen and enthusiastic gentlemen called Brian Corcoran, and as well as persuading us to join the local triathlon club, we also got to learn about a new parkrun that he was setting up in Welland Park. We both went along to his ‘test sessions’ and also made it to the very first parkrun. This was new and exciting, and the first time we had heard of this amazing phenomena that draws communities together and forges friendships and engages people to get mobile.

Very quickly I became a regular volunteer; I have always had more pleasure from volunteering than actually running at a parkrun. I still get butterflies! I was invited along to join the core team in the spring of 2016 and have thoroughly enjoyed my three years as an RD.

It is amazing how parkrun brings people together; people who you may not have had the opportunity to meet in your normal ‘day life’. It is a ‘happy’ place, with lots of positivity and friendliness and so many smiles. It almost seems incidental that you run 5km, as it is so much more than that!

I wish you all well with your running, in whatever form that may take. We should all set ourselves goals and challenges, and I think they should all scare us a bit too! The thought of failure is a great thing to drive you on and push yourself. The sense of achievement is far greater when we come out of our comfort zone. We are all capable of so much more than our minds think we are, so what’s your next challenge going to be? Go on, push yourself as you really can do it!

Lots of love Nicky x

 

Run Report #202 – 9th March 2019 by Roger Pangbourne

Just a quick little Run Report for today – not even many stats!!

 

The day started early – a good pilot friend and I were due to fly from Leicester to Henstridge Airfield parkrun.  Last week was postponed due to low cloudbase and this morning at stupid o’clock we had to call it of again due to gusting winds (a decision that we were very happy about when we experienced these at Welland Park later in the day!)

 

So plan B was a ‘home’ trip to lovely Welland Park and a chance to catch up with friends all round, with of course one of the best breakfasts you’ll find at any parkrun.

 

A busy morning at the bowls pavilion as 50 (yes 50! – the second highest we’ve ever had) volunteers all queued up with Jo (RD in charge today) to announce their presence (loads of Duke of Edinburgh students, many of whom are near to completing their relevant awards – congrats).  A huge thank you to all the volunteers – after we only had one Marshal earlier in the week, we were bowled over by how many volunteers rallied to Jo’s cry for assistance.  Thank you all.

 

Jo gave a lovely briefing at the start, with everyone agreeing to a ‘deal’ with Jo to only overtake on the right, keep to the left and single file at all the narrowest parts and the bit I particularly liked:  If you start with a dog, we want you to finish with the dog (not hand it to some unsuspecting volunteer) and if you start with a child, it’s generally a good idea to finish with a child! J

 

A postponed parkrunner of the month medal award for Sylvia (great running recently Sylvia!) and we were off.

Sylvia protm

Due to my unexpected appearance at MH today, I wasn’t due to fill any other volunteer roles – no VI guiding or pacing, so I was ‘just’ parkrunning.  It’s a while since that happened and I was unsure whether I was just going to drift around casually or set off like a man possessed.  Well when I hear “3-2-1-parkrun!” something inside me clicks so I was off like a shot (well, and unfit, overweight shot) and settling into a pace that I knew wouldn’t last:

1stkm:  4:17 (too quick)

2ndkm: 4:26 (o.k. ish)

3rdkm: 4:25 (that surprised me)

4thkm:  4:38 (here we go!)

5thkm: 4:37 (could have pushed it a bit more, but good enough)

 

Later on parkrun time completed in 22:39 (not even a bingo number :( !)

 

On the way around I was able to observe our lovely parkrun and I couldn’t spot any ‘incidents’, so well done everyone and thank you for sticking to Jo’s ‘deal’.

 

One of our parkrun Ambassadors was visiting today (Mark), so after collecting my finish token I trot across the field to run the final lap with him – he’s on a good run of form at the moment, so I ‘encourage’ (if that’s the correct word?) him around the last 300m. Later on a time of 25:22 is confirmed – result! – an MH PB for him by 22 seconds and his quickest parkrun time since 2015 – well done Mark!

 

After scanning, I wander down the straight helping ensure all the other parkrunners who have finished are still keeping left to the left so as not to block anyone still running.  I decide to pick on someone else to ‘encourage’ their finish.  From 450m out, Allyson duly creates a 20 second gap from the position she was in – well done Allyson, there’s more in the tank!

 

As the winds blow in a shower-and-a-half, it’s time to start helping tidy up the kit ready for next week and soon I find myself sat outside the café having breakfast with Mark in the sunshine!  We pass the time contemplating how parkrun does amazing things for so many people, before stepping inside for some obligatory cake and check in with Jo and Clive who are finishing off today’s results.

 

So there we go.  Another little Run Report dashed off.  There are plenty of gaps in the volunteer roster for the Run Report Writer role – one of the few volunteer roles that can be done whilst also parkrunning the course.  If you have a story to share and would like to have a go for this role, just let us know and we’d love to hear from you in future.

 

For now, well done to all 387 parkrunners and 50 volunteers who all made today happen.  Congratulations to Mark and the other 60 of you who recorded PBs today – great stuff.  We welcomed 24 first timers, of whom 8 were completely new to parkrun.  We hope you return again and again and grow to love parkrun as we all do.

 

Have a great week everyone.

 

 

Roger Pangbourne

 

News for photos and photographers

Well we didn’t have a Run Report Writer for event #201, so here is a little update regarding Market Harborough parkrun photos:

Earlier this year Flickr changed their settings, restricting the number of photos that free accounts can hold.  It’s safe to say that the MH parkrun Flickr photos group holds way more than the limit Flickr have imposed!

Therefore parkrun HQ have moved all event teams onto Google Photos.  This is a little different in that we are now storing all photos for a particular event in its own Google Photos album and then each time we have photos we can share the link to the new album so parkrunners can browse through and download any photos they wish.

The procedure is a little different for photographers also as someone from the Core Team (usually that week’s RD) will need to set up a new album and share the link with you so you can add the photos directly into the Google Photos album and then we will share the link for everyone.

For the time being, Flickr is still holding all the MH parkrun photos and any photographers with a ‘Pro’ account may be able to add their photos onto Flickr, but we are aware that Flickr may close down or remove all the existing photos at any time.

What about all those old photos I hear you ask?!

Well good news, we have downloaded every photo from Flickr and set up Google Photo albums for all the events where photos were previously uploaded.  How do I access these?  Well below are all the links that you will need to any of the events up until event #201.  The photos from the most recent events have yet to be added, but should be there very soon.

MHparkrun#196_009

We hope you continue to enjoy the lovely photos taken by our parkrun volunteer photographers and if you need any of them to be taken down, you can just contact us at the marketharborough@parkrun.com email address, then we will happily remove any offending photos.

 

Event #201 – 2 March 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/vEH9sBLVj6XCnfeG7

 

Event #200 – 23 February 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/PXvma24vbKSkHrpv9

 

Event #199 – 16 February 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/zwjqFFdTwWTUPjQQ8

 

Event #198 – 9 February 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/F24WLVMdHRupauWk6

 

Event #196 – 26 January 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/VTirrM4BFZCczXtg8

 

Event #195 – 19 January 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/XMUkguW2K1cDaDYM9

 

Event #194 – 12 January 2019:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/EsA3cutxRgucpnte8

 

Event #190 – 22 December 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/PwqevztyiAAdQQCq8

 

Event #185 – 17 November 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/ufL8badsvgmmjejE6

 

Event #182 – 27 October 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/hnZnvUeuKVnZvYSGA

 

Event #181 – 20 October 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/SYMNBVQjyBsFNzRbA

 

Event #173 – 25 August 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/5cR2Wmp6CkybRXYX8

 

Event #172 – 18 August 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/PA5eRtERNmyPz7T79

 

Event #171 – 11 August 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/ye7NGM3ucd7iZSyN8

 

Event #170 – 28 July 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/JgdTf9BC8H6zYv5E6

 

Event #169 – 21 July 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/rTMSQXqUD7jVD8WKA

 

Event #163 – 9 June 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/MeRoproQaD7DqKiA7

 

Event #157 – 28 April 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/5YdWByPjwW6xSubJ6

 

Event #155 – 14 April 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/SYRSLySUC2QHtoMDA

 

Event #153 – 24 March 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/uxnwGaCU4kANytuM6

 

Event #151 – 10 March 2018:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/2m8JszQd4C2iMPmq8

 

Event #137 – 25 November 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/jNDCE7Ducs9XxUxJ9

 

Event #135 – 11 November 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/zWn1uRnSMSwA1RNw7

 

Event #125 – 2 September 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/iS6MZ4SLb9NDadTw5

 

Event #115 – 24 June 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/RqNJBfsPXht8zzxC8

 

Event #105 – 15 April 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/QXHnkiHtNy2LCanR9

 

Event #102 – 25 March 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/UWKg9sFHXZ4EhyNo7

 

Event #99 – 4 March 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/DEthCz2Uum1Z3Htk8

 

Event #98 – 25 February 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/n6fTzWTA7JqyXj5J7

 

Event #96 – 11 February 2017:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/qHVoc8sGM6KYZRJ27

 

Event #69 – 13 August 2016:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/pbStLJGJoVk7hTpVA

 

Event #67 – 30 July 2016:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/LgjQNYCut2fbdmQv9

 

Event #65 – 16 July 2016:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/t9PLTUT37XXjRFAh7

 

Event #39 – 16 January 2016:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/LkcXeLoHvGJBice18

 

Event #35 – 25 December 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/mvg5MQZeVjBP7Uky8

 

Event #19 – 5 September 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/X1TN5bKzoYGLkGeu9

 

Event #17 – 22 August 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/Po9gENPZ1Fmkp8XG8

 

Event #15 – 8 August 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/We3emyyEnuwLTXLy5

 

Event #9 – 27 June 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AtmuvHoBfD9TFqjs5

 

Event #8 – 20 June 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AztyS9LGXG5Vim5u5

 

Event #7 – 6 June 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/rmxUhdHDZoAekr9J7

 

Event #5 – 23 May 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AcE2zwLH5TChLmZM7

 

Event #4 – 16 May 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yJXMsKoVBr3yobeg9

 

Event #3 – 9 May 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/8q4GKPhKPKM5Mh5e6

 

Event #1 – 25 April 2015:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/xfW2KB1M95Z9eSAo8

 

Happy viewing!

 

 

Roger and the Core Team

 

Run Report #200 – 23rd February 2019 by Catherine Jeffs

Run number 200

We’re all raring to go

Don’t start off too quickly

Don’t finish too slow

 

We listen intently

To the do’s, don’ts and please

Keep left unless overtaking

Dogs kept on short leads

 

The countdown to signal

We’ll soon start to run

It’s not cold or icy

We’re here to have fun!

 

We’re into our running

We’re off on our way

We’ll soon reach the finish

And get on with the day

 

But it’s not always easy

We don’t all fly round

One foot before the other

Keeps hitting the ground

 

Lap 1 now is over

Just 2 left to go

More runners go past us

We go with the flow

 

Lots now have finished

Today they have cake

But some still keep going

More steps left to take

 

And now it’s gone quiet

I feel all alone

Into the last lap

The last km home

 

But one thing about parkrun

You’re never alone

The marshals, the tail walkers,

They’ll see you get home

 

In a flash it is over

Just a jog in the park

It’s over till next week

It will all again start



The pacers, the timekeepers

The guides and the boss

Without them it won’t happen

We’d all be so lost

 

So thank you to everyone

Who helped us today

The 50 runs t-shirt –

Will soon come my way.

 

A few more to go yet

But I know I’ll be back

To Harborough or Corby

(my passport I’ll pack)

 

There’s nothing like parkrun

To kickstart your day

And we’ll all keep on running

Our own speeds, our own way



 

 

Run Report #199 – 16th February 2019 by Lisa Campbell

It’s 06:25 and I wake up. My alarm, set for 06:30, hasn’t gone off yet. It takes me a few seconds to work out what day it is. Ah yes, Saturday... parkrun day! Then I remember... today is my first day as Run Director for Market Harborough parkrun. The nerves kick in. 

As I get ready, I mentally run through what I have to do, what I have to remember, what to say in the pre-run briefing etc. I feel sick. I feel dizzy. I don’t like this feeling! 

Simon helps me carry the two boxes of kit and the speaker downstairs, and load them into my car. The kit is all ready to go. Laptop, radios and barcode scanners are charged. 38 volunteer bibs are washed, dried and folded, paperwork for volunteers is attached to clipboards and a final check ensures the tokens are in order. Turns out being RD is a week-long role!

We leave home at 07:30, and arrive around 5 minutes later. The park is empty. I send Simon to the river to shovel the mud that has built up on the path out of the way, ensuring it’s not slippery for the runners. I can’t be dealing with a runner in the river on my first day as RD! Meanwhile I lay out all of the signs, posts etc. As volunteers and other members of the Core Team arrive I delegate sections of the course for them to set up. All is going to plan. 

635CF591-5243-43E1-923E-91A1E53DB6AF

It’s around 08:30 when most volunteers start to arrive. I tick them off on my list and hand them their relevant equipment and tell the marshals where I’d like them to marshal. 

It’s 08:50 now and that means it’s time to head to the start. Simon’s gone on ahead to get the speaker from my car and set it up. Mark approaches me and tells me that it’s his wife, Alex’s 50th run. I make a note and head to the start. 

Roger climbs the stepladder first and introduces me. I am only half paying attention, half concentrating on taking deep breaths and telling myself that I just need to follow the script in my hand. People clap and Roger steps down. My hands start shaking. I climb up the stepladder, realising it’s much harder to stand on than I thought. I don’t make it to the top step as I’m worried I’ll fall; luckily I’m 6ft tall! 

The next three minutes are a blur. I just remember the barrage of self-conscious thoughts: “I’m talking too quickly”, “I’m taking too long”, “I’m shouting”, “can they all hear me?”, “I hate my voice”, and the worst one: “why does this run brief contain so many damn Rs!” (for those who haven’t noticed, pronouncing Rs is not my strong point!). 

CE0AAF5C-FC90-49D8-8DE1-22804FFFC244

3-2-1-parkrun and their off! A wave of relief as the runners disappear around the corner. 

The next 18 minutes are fairly relaxed. Everyone is in place for when the first finishers cross the line. I spend most of my time near the funnel, checking that the timekeepers and finish tokens are on track with each other. Then something happens. I still don’t know exactly what, but next check of timekeepers and finish tokens shows that they’re one out from one another. Oops... Don’t panic. Nothing I can do about it now. I’ll deal with it afterwards. 

A couple of further issues arise; two people cross the finish line twice. But the funnel managers and finish token volunteers are on the ball and spot this and remedy it quickly and easily. Both people are given a second finish token and we explain that they must scan the first and pop the second in the tub without having it scanned. 

Around 10:15 and the last people cross the finish line, followed by the tail walkers. We pack up the rest of the finish and head back to the bowls pavilion. Meanwhile, various volunteers have packed up the rest of the course. We pack everything back into the kit boxes and head to the café. Bev has already set the laptop up for me. Time to process the results. 

I plug in the first barcode scanner. Then I see the message on the screen. ‘No OPN records found’. I don’t know what that means, but it certainly doesn’t sound good! Did I accidentally press the reset button on the scanner? If so, that’s 1/3 of the runners who won’t get their results! Bev tells me not to panic (I still do) and I unplug it and try again. Same message. I try another barcode scanner. That one works fine and the results from that one are uploaded. I try scanner number 3. That works fine too. This worries me even more because it tells me it’s the scanner, not the cable or laptop. I plug scanner number 1 back in and wait... Bev then says “if this doesn’t work I don’t know what to do”. Whaaaat??? I need you to tell me that this is a common issue that you have a remedy for! We both wait, nervous energy floating between us. Then... 202 records uploaded. Yes! Not sure what the issue was and frankly I don’t care. It’s working. Phew! 

I plug in and upload the stopwatch data. I then manually enter those whose barcodes wouldn’t scan. I remove the second result of those who crossed the line twice. I manage to work out that the discrepancy between the timekeepers and finish tokens occurred between runners 96 and 148. But that’s a fairly wide window. Not entirely sure what to do about this, so I ask Roger to help out. We work out what to do to fix this, and the results are good to go. I then finalise the volunteer roster, adding in those who turned up in the day to support, to ensure they get their volunteer credit and thank you email. 

I then hand the kit over to Nicola, who is RD this week, and do a final Facebook post for the week. Finally, I can relax! Overall it’s gone pretty well. Everyone is alive, and got their results. The support from The Core Team and the runners/volunteers was great! In a weird way, despite the stress and anxiety, I’m quite looking forward to my next stint as RD! 

6DBAC755-ECDD-4710-8F54-817625900DF8

 

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