Ally Pally Parkrun #381
My friend and I have been doing some Parkrun tourism lately.
Mostly this consists of searching around for a Parkrun as near by as possible so I don’t have to rise from the pillowy bliss of bed until the last possible second. However, last week there was also an added wrinkle:
“Can we do a non-hilly run please? I just can’t handle doing hills this time”
“Sure, well that’s Hampstead Heath out. What about this one?”
“Yeah that seems flat. What’s it called? Ally Pally…”
As those who regularly face the Alexandra Palace Parkrun will know, “flat” is not the word you’d use to describe it. Unless you were saying “I nearly fell flat on my face on that last giant hill”.
Ally Pall features a number of short, sharp uphill darts that I was completely unprepared for. That, combined with the heat, meant the run was never going to be my fastest 5K.
At last week’s run the sky tried to drown me, and this week it tried to melt me. Sometimes I wonder if I upset Mother Nature by dropping a Dr Pepper can or something and she’s slowly taking revenge by sabotaging my running career (or maybe I just need to stop coming up with excuses).
Still, some people did manage to squeeze out an improved time. Matthew Field, Rondo Selwyn, Lloyd Williams, and Tom Holland (calm down, not that one) all got PBs.
In fact, of the 404 runners who ran, walked, and jogged the course on Saturday, 32 set personal bests.
My friend and I weren’t the only first timers there either.
Hills. Hampstead Heath.
Louise Middleton, Pallavi Sharma, Charlie Barnett, Asher Cohen, Amy Bush, Zoe Elliot, Nedum Orike, Andrew Sutherland, Philip Tibenham, Akash Gulati, Tony Sayers and Sam Turner all made their Ally Pally debut.
Meanwhile on the other end of the spectrum, Julie Wallis completed her 50th Parkrun, Dominic Pride and Ana-Maria Norbury did their 100th, and Alun Nash racked up a staggering 429th.
Thanks to all the volunteers who showed up despite the conditions and to everyone who contributes to parkrun in ways large and small.