Heslington parkrun #101

Saturday February 15th - lovely weather for ducks.

“Why does it always rain on me? Is it because I parkran when I was seventeen?” - Travis

Saturday morning, and guess what? Another storm brewing. Must be time for parkrun! But instead of blaming it on the weatherman, or even singing in the rain, the committed were out at Heslington, running in the rain.

Forget the dark clouds looming on the horizon, ignore the storm-shaped weather forecast, what could be better than joining 418 other people to run, canter, trot or jog around Heslington’s 101st parkrun? What could be better? Well, I am sure that you may be able to think of a few things. But to the dedicated parkrunner and eager first timers alike, the thought of running around Heslington’s paved course amongst a friendly and chatty throng with the promise of cake at the end (thanks to Kim and friends) was enough to get us out in lycra, a brisk breeze and the fresh air. Some even came in shorts!!!! I suppose they do dry quicker than leggings...

Heslington is a paved course (or brick-lined river, depending on the weather), running around the athletics track then out along beside the lake, before returning for another loop- and-a-bit of the track/river. It is suitable for all weathers, unlike many grass-based parkruns. But this morning it had the added interest of ‘A wet bit’ and a ‘Muddy bit’ (to quote our amazing run director), and an attendant gaggle of geese watching in bewilderment as we ran past in the steadily gathering breeze.

Proving that there is someone up there who loves parkrunners (apart from the run director!) the rain held off until the very last lap of the track! Although I am sure that the fast bods were already home, showered, breakfasted and going about their daily tasks before some of us got to that bit. Just think, the rest of us had a free shower that was totally carbon-neutral! Many thanks to the amazing marshals who stood in the rain until the last runners were in and kept on smiling and cheering. We really appreciate you standing there in the rain and wind to encourage us. #RoundOfApplause.

Random stats:
• Congratulations to Don Formhals doing his 250th parkrun today, to Ian Fairlamb and Kim Middleton doing their 100th and to Elizabeth Foley, Luke Richardson, Susan Lang and Nicola Stojkovic who were running their 50th parkruns. Well done!
• Today there were 50 first timers - nice to see you all! And a special mention for the 10 runners who were doing their first ever parkruns. Congratulations for completing the course. We hope to see you again next week.
• February is the second month of the year – so we’re hailing the number 2’s… James White was 2nd male runner in and Catrin Donnelly was 2nd female.
• Today was also the 15th of the month – so, keeping with the numerical pattern, well done to Richard Carrick who came in 15th place.
• And – because this is an outstanding achievement – well done to the 55 people who achieved a new personal best… a round of applause and well done to you all!

(Full results can be found at: https://www.parkrun.org.uk/heslington/results/latestresults//)

This week our volunteers included the following people:
Abbey DRIFFIELD, Adam THOMAS, Adrian GUNN, Amy CARTON, Amy IREDALE-MITCHELL, Angela GRAHAM, Celia MAUGHAN, Claire INCH, Clare STONES, Don GUNN, Harry WYKES, Helen GRAINGER, Hem RANA, Ian FAIRLAMB, Jack SLOCOMBE, James WILLIAMSON, Jamie INCH, Jane CUNNINGHAM, Jane MORBY, Jeffrey WOOLHOUSE, Joni SOUTHALL, Jonny WISE, Jordan HOWE, Kate BOYD, Kevin HIND, Kevin THOMAS, Leigh SHIPLEY, Lucas SHIPLEY, Luke HARBORD, Nick BOYD, Nick SHIPLEY, Nicola CLEMENTS, Nicola STOJKOVIC, Olivia BOWLING, Richard WALKER, Richard WYKES, Rob HUNT, Sara HARBORD, Sebastian LAWRENCE, Tasmin SARAI, Tristan FEATHERBY, Valda BARNETT, Viki Bee CLARKE and William HARGREAVES

Thanks to all of you who turned up, set up the run, scanned barcodes, cheered us on and the myriad of other jobs that you do - parkrun could not take place without your help. You are amazing people and deserve a huge vote of thanks for all you do!

If you would like to join our band of happy volunteers - there are plenty of opportunities to help out and we are always pleased to see new recruits. Just take a look at our parkrun web page and send us an email at heslingtonhelpers@parkrun.com if you would like to take part as a volunteer.

A word of encouragement - please don’t think you have to be another Mo Farrah or Kelly Holmes to join us. Or even as good at running as that colleague who’s always popping off down the gym! Whatever your speed or ability, you are welcome to join us. You will never be the last person in - we have a tail walker who takes that position.

Whether you walk, run or jog, you deserve a round of applause for taking part and finishing this 5k course. Because for most of us parkrun is not so much about racing and winning, but a warm and welcoming social event with a run or walk thrown in for good measure. So come along and try us out! We look forward to seeing you again next Saturday at York Sport Village, Lakeside Way, Heslington, York YO10 5FG.