Hogmoor Inclosure Parkrun 1st June 2019

Alton Rookie Runners graduation parkrun (June 1 st 2019)

The Marshal’s perspective by Fran Light:
(Alton Runners coach Fran Light coached the Alton Rookie Runners through the 9-week 0-5 k programme).
After completing Alton Runners 9-week 0-5k programme, the Alton Rookie Runners were nervous and excited in equal measure when they gathered for their graduation parkrun. Having coached the team, I was really excited for them as I appreciated how very hard they had worked for this
moment. After leading the rookies in a 10 minute warm-up routine and staying with them for the first timers briefing I headed off to my marshalling post from where I had four opportunities to shout encouragement to them and other parkrunners as they ran past. The first time the rookies went
by they looked understandably pensive, but I was glad to see that they were all following the strategy we had practiced and that no-one set off too fast. As they passed me for the fourth and final time, they all looked tired, but happy … no doubt because they knew that they didn’t have much further to go! The rookies all did brilliantly and I am super proud of each and every one of them. We had done a parkrun simulation in training a couple of weeks ago to prepare for the big day, but there wasn’t much we could do to prepare for the hot weather and the sandy terrain, both of which they coped with admirably.
Afterwards, with varying degrees of coaxing, the rookies each rang the PB bell, to rounds of applause from their team mates and other runners. Alton Runners chairman then presented each rookie graduate with their personalised completion certificate and then we all settled down for a well-deserved picnic. Lots of Alton Runners came along to support the rookies and to celebrate the fact that Alton Runners member and coach Richard Taylor was completing his 50 th parkrun. Well done Richard -
and thanks for the homemade guacamole, it was delicious!

The runner’s perspective by Lou Morrish:
(Alton Runners member Lou Morrish has supported the Alton Rookie Runners throughout the 0 – 5k programme and ran alongside them on their graduation run) A warm sun shone down from a flawless blue sky as the Alton Rookie Runners arrived at Hogmoor Inclosure. Fran led a low-key warm-up session in a corner of the park and as nine o’clock neared, more runners arrived, and the atmosphere of excitement grew. There were nervous faces amongst the Rookies, and some last-minute concerns (would sand get in their shoes?) but on the whole everyone was feeling positive, in large part thanks to Fran’s unceasing mantra of ‘Smile! It will all be okay!’ The run began, and very soon the Rookies found their individual paces, just as Fran had advised
them to do. Hermione and Lou, along with Dominique, were soon off ahead, and I ran with Jenny, Esther, Sarah and Janine. But after about 2 k, Jenny’s pace (and her slightly longer legs) took her ahead as well.
The Rookies all ran steadily around the first lap, and Esther in particular was incredibly chuffed to have completed a lap without stopping. Sarah kept a good steady pace, watering her head at intervals, and Janine used her speed walking to best effect, as the three began their second lap.
Morale was still very high, helped along by the wonderful volunteer marshals. We all laughed and danced at the ‘music spot’, smiled widely as we passed Fran for the third time, and were buoyed up by the many encouraging remarks from other runners on the course. Everyone was tiring by the final kilometre. The sand was dragging, and the sun was now really
rather hot. But the determination amongst the Rookies was palpable, and if anything the pace picked up. The final hill was conquered, and the finisher’s funnel was in sight. As the Rookies crossed the line, the crowd cheered and clapped. They had done it! Thanks to Fran’s comprehensive training over nine weeks, the group had succeeded in achieving their goal – to complete a parkrun. Having shared their journey, I have learned so much, and hope to continue helping Fran and new runners to achieve their dreams.

The supporter’s perspective by Nicolle Carver:
(Nicolle took part in the latest rookie programme. Unfortunately, due to injury, couldn’t take part in today’s graduation run but she came along to cheer her team mates in as they came across the finish line) Having to take a break from running myself didn't stop me from taking part in the graduation run
for my fellow rookies in a different way.
Catching people's eyes, I could sense that they were quite nervous, but these nerves soon turned to excitement as the infectious buzz from the other runners spread, and then they were off! The change I saw when they came round the first lap was great. Although they were all a little more tired than when they set off, you could tell they had settled into their rhythm. By the next
time I saw them next, as they were coming to the end of their graduation run, the elation on their faces was wonderful. The encouragement from others gave them an extra spring in their step and added an extra inch to their smiles as the finish line came into sight.

When we all met up afterwards and everyone shared their experiences around the course there was a very strong team spirit and the talk soon turned to future running plans.

 

Hogmoor Inclosure parkrun #64 -18th May 2019

Over the past year I’ve heard lots about Hogmoor Inclosure parkrun but it’s taken until Saturday for me to actually manage a visit. Apart from QECP, this is the local one to my home and where a lot of my running group come to, so I persuaded my kids to have a change from the incredibly flat course we’ve been going to for the last 18 months and see what Hogmoor has to offer. I managed to convince a few friends to come along too, so we all met in the car park and followed the well signed path to the start area. One thing that I immediately noticed was the use of a bell to get the runners’ attention, initially to announce the new runners briefing details, then to gather up everyone for the pre-race briefing and a few 50 milestone announcements. A very short stroll around the corner to the start line and soon all the runners and walkers were on their way to complete the 5k distance. The course was a mixture of trail and sandy paths and apart from the passing straights to the loops it was also a wide course so you were able to run alongside friends or overtake someone easily.  Encouraging words were coming from marshals and other runners and soon we were on to lap 2. This lap seemed so much shorter, probably because I now had a few landmarks to use as points to get to. Before I knew it, the finish line was in sight, and we were cheered on by a handful of volunteers and faster runners. I crossed it wanting to do it all again. The absence of a coffee shop was made up by people wandering around offering cake and water. This meant that everyone was still at the finish area when the tail-walkers came through. Close to the start/finish area is also a large adventure playground that keeps young supporters occupied whilst still being close enough to keep popping back to see everyone coming by. My only regret about Hogmoor is not having visited sooner! I’ll definitely be back and will be recommending it to others. See you soon!

Clare Blecher

Editor's note: The long awaited café and toilet block are now due to open late summer (barring further setbacks) so, if you are so inclined, do keep bringing cakes etc. to share, they are always appreciated!

Thank you to Isaac Garfoot for this week's photos:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/qpE6PCxPfRFCUshx5

 

Hogmoor Inclosure parkrun #63: Run report from Millie Martin (and photos from Max Powell)

I finally took part in my first parkrun – whoop! whoop! It was great! Hogmoor Inclosure parkrun was the place to be at 9am last Saturday morning.

My preparation started months ago when I joined a ‘Couch to 5K’ running group in Liphook. I was 52 at the time and on the first run I thought I was doing rather well. The course leader then started running next to me and said “I believe there’s a 69 year-old in the group – is it you?”. My heart sank ever so slightly but I carried on regardless. As it turned out, the real 69 year-old is rather a whizz and has now completed 21 parkruns, to my feeble 1! Go Gerd!

My main reason for writing this is to encourage others to give parkrun a go, whatever your level of fitness. I had a few hiccups on my journey to the 5K goal, hence the months of prep, but I was determined to make it one day!

Whether you walk, jog, run or sprint you’ll have a sense of achievement and you’ll also meet some friendly and enthusiastic people along the way. The jolly introductory chat takes place a few minutes before 9am and then you’re off! There are marshals all around the course giving words of encouragement at various decibels. If you are tiring, then they give you the boost that you need to carry on. The course is not the flattest, but nor is it too tough – a good balance. When you cross the finish line there’s a great feeling of achievement (and slight relief) and then you can go home and carry on with your day knowing that you’ve done something good! Within a few hours of finishing, an email pings into your inbox giving you lots of personalised information about your run – you can’t help but feel proud when you read it (‘You were the 9th female finisher in your age category’ – hey, perhaps there were only 9 females in total in my age category, but I’ll never know and I felt good!).

I took a long time to pluck up the courage to take part in a parkrun. In the end I decided that I just had to bite the bullet and give it a go. I’m so pleased that I did and I’d encourage anyone else thinking of going along to just do it! You know you can!

Finally a huge thank you to the organisers and marshals – you’re all fantastic!

See you on Saturday!

Millie Martin

 

Thanks to Max Powell for his photos:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/iPZAqar1iRTXmzZy6

 
 

Run report for HI parkrun #60 – 20th April 2019

My first parkrun was Christmas Day 2016 at QE. I’d been in the pub the night before celebrating Christmas Eve, and I was a few pints in to my evening when a chap told me about parkrun and how I could do a 5k ‘race’ on Christmas Day. Always up for a challenge and new to running, I decided to drag my then girlfriend and my dog up to QE Park for 9 a.m for a run. What a way to start Christmas! I was immediately hooked, started attending every week and trying to do as many local runs as possible. I sought advice from my new local running friends about which courses were fast, which were pretty and which we could meet up at for a run and coffee.

That’s what parkrun is all about for me - running with your mates and making new mates who all have the same interest as you - running! This Saturday was my 100th run. I’m not one to shy away from a shindig, so I thought it would be a great occasion to get as many of my Vegan Runners friends (my first claim club), my Liss Runners mates (my awesome local club) and anyone else who wanted to join in for the morning. The great thing was that at least three people came up to me, saying they came along to give parkrun a go for the first time - amazing! At the opposite end of the running scale, ultra running legend, Susie Chan, who is now very local to Hogmoor was running as well and chatting to everyone - a great example of how parkrun works for all runners and is 100% inclusive.
This week, 269 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 74 were first timers and 47 recorded new Personal Bests. That’s pretty good going for a sunny Easter Saturday. I chose Hogmoor for my 100th because it’s super friendly, a brilliant trail course, and just my favourite parkrun. I love everything about it, even the sand! I especially love the lady marshal who volunteers every week and cheers at the same corner, she goes bananas every time a runner approaches, and her enthusiasm for the event as well as giving up very Saturday morning to get involved is the epitome of the parkrun spirit and why parkrun is so special to not just the running community but to the wider community. If you volunteer at parkrun, you rule.
I’d like to say thank you to all my Vegan Runner mates for making cakes, running and generally being blooming lovely. We had runners come from as far as Brighton and Maidenhead. I think we had nearly 30 runners. I hope everyone attending enjoyed all the cakes and ‘facon’ rolls! I’d like to apologise if my broccoli costume (I actually ran a marathon in it on Boxing Day, which was fun!) was as terrifying as it looked in the event photos and I hope it didn’t put anyone off their breakfast! A massive thank you to everyone else who came and ran, volunteered and made the event happen.
The good thing is we only have to wait a few more days, and then we can do it all over again. Although, I will be leaving the broccoli costume at home for a bit - it needs a good wash!  Happy running, everyone :)
Jhon Cosgrove
Photos by Rob Hannam:
Photos by Denyse King:
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