The new normal 8 months on  

Conkers parkrun non run report  -  November 14, 2020

Can you quite believe that it’s been 8 months since we all gathered in our numbers under the canopy of trees nattering away over the dogs that barked excitedly waiting for that precious sound of THREE, TWO, ONE?!

A lot has changed over the past 8 months, we left parkrun at the turn of winter through to spring and now we’re heading back into winter, our personal lives have changed, the way we work has changed, the way in which we socialise has changed and the way in which we take part in parkrunday (previously known as Saturday) has changed but one thing that has stayed the same and will never change is our Conkers parkrun community, the support and love this family has for one another has been a lifeline for many during these past 8 months and I am sure it will continue to do so.

So let’s take a look at how our parkrunday (previously known as Saturday) look like today. We may not gather in our numbers together but we certainly still turn out in our numbers, either for a solo 5k or for a 5k with one other person. We don’t all run at 9am anymore, some of us don’t even make it out until gone evening time but whatever time and whatever place we lace up our running shoes, pull on our favourite parkrun tee and head out for our 5k parkrun. Our routes have certainly changed, some of us run at Conkers, frontwards, backwards, new route, old route and some of us choose a 5k route from our doorstep, and others like to tour local areas and find different routes every week, although I haven’t seen any isolation garden parkruns on Strava for a while. I really believe that Conkers parkrun updates, run briefs and run reports has kept our spirits high and our motivation strong.

My parkrun day went a little bit like this… I woke up around 7:30ish, made myself two crumpets and a coffee and went back to bed for a little while watching tiktoks. About 9:45 I laced up my pink Nikes, pulled on my Conkers parkruns apricot tee (these are available to purchase from the parkrun website and can be personalised with your local parkrun name) I selected my running playlist and off I went! I regretted wearing a base layer as soon as I got going, always dress for the 2nd mile not the 1st! My parkrun route is a fairly flat course with just a couple of uphill sections, I start off on Brunel way and I head down to Swadlincote lane before hitting Hearthcote road, uphill to end is the first Eugh hill but it’s over quickly, kind of like cheeky hill but without the friendly marshals. Then you hit the Sainsburys shuffle segment, this segment is about a mile long and is ever so slightly downhill which is great if you’re looking for a 1 mile PB but I must warn you running past the rainbow waste centre can be very unpleasant, it stinks and its hot and if its windy you’re likely to get a mouthful of crap! My advice… run quick! After the Sainsburys shuffle you’re nearly there, just up Cadley Hill road and back onto Swadlincote lane and Brunel way and boom! 5k done already! My time this week was 30:15.  What I love about this route is that you are almost always guaranteed to bump into another runner, I love giving a friendly wave or a nod to a fellow runner, it always gives me a boost to keep on going and I hope it does the same for them. So if you fancy giving a different 5k route a go for your non parkrun I’d give this fairly fast and flat course a go, hopefully you’ll like it.

So you lovely lot, until we meet again under the canopy of trees at Conkers I wish you all happy running. I am really hopeful that early next spring we’ll be there again in our numbers, doing what we love to do.

Sophie-Anne xx