KWp Event #336

This is probably the toughest run report I’ve had to write due to recent events. With the announcement of football cancellations, I arrived at the venue to scenes of sheer pandemonium. There was severe panic in a small section of the crowd, as a handful of Aston Villa fans were finally coming to terms with their prolonged league table status.
In fact one Villa fan Gavin CLINTON (23:44) was up in arms. A rumour did circulate around the park that the fantasy football guru had been overheard in the café, saying he was contemplating ditching the claret and going Sky Blue.

Talking of claret…flustered red wine lover Rachael SHELTON’s credit card took a pounding this weekend as she ran her 149th parkrun (27:36 BADGERS). The ex 18-30 holiday rep was spotted in Kwik Save with innocent running colleague and undercover detective Sharon JACKSON (24:02). Both were issued with a banning notice after wiping the shelves clean of Blue Nun.

Event 336 attracted 3 less runners (333)…they do say 3 is the magic number. 3rd back today was certainly no stranger to these typing fingers. Regular Bedworth parkrunner and Hinckley RC supremo Dave MASSER took that title. (19:20)
It was a good day for the Leicestershire based outfit, as fellow Hinckley RC ace Matthew JOHNSON was first back with a quality 18:03.
Another local running club in fine form were Peel Road Runners. The speedy Rob MACE was second back greeting the bar code scanners in 19:12.

38 were savouring the occasion for the 1st time with 28 pocketing a new PB. 31 different running clubs were represented…an event made possible by 28 high vis volunteer heroes, who are always gratefully appreciated. Thank you to all that volunteered today including tail walkers Ian MCNAMARA, Amanda ARNOLD and Noel LAWTON.

Run director and “Leader of the pack” was the chiselled Tim GOULD. Huge credit to the core team especially in recent weeks. Precise planning and a little “in house initiative” have seen different course routes and last minute changes. A fantastic example of teamwork from a group that tirelessly dedicate their own time.

Katherine SNOWDEN had the distinction of being first female home (21:14 Tamworth AC).
Another name not lost on me is Claire Louise MARTIN. The Cobra RC athlete homed in on her impending 75th parkrun with a finish time of 23:01.
There was more success for Peel Road Runners, as Lisa STRETTON wowed the crowds crossing the line in 23:25.

During the summer at Kingsbury you can’t buy bug spray for love nor money…how times and the seasons change. In the current climate one struggles to even buy basic essentials. A special mention to Paul DANIELS (46:02) who had the biggest cheer of the day, after whipping out a toilet roll from his right sleeve on his 225th parkrun (I’ve missed this).

Now we know how parkrunners love to dress up. Sue THOULD had the right idea midweek with her cautious approach. The much loved volunteer and runner ordered a full body bee hive costume from flea bay (and wore a pair of gardening gloves from Wilkos).

Rachel WALKER rightly celebrated her 175th run (31:29), with 1st timer Valerie WYNN opting to toast her 125th parkrun at the water park (41:48).

The shackles were off for Zoe COPE (BADGERS 75th parkrun) as she took full advantage of her recent training regime (negative splits 27:47). Freestyler Gavin CROCKWELL also got in on the act on his 69th parkrun.

Philip NEALE ran his ½ century and did so in style with a new PB (21:26 Peel Road Runners). Peter BRADBURN shared the milestone registering a time of 25:40.
I had the pleasure of speaking to Jayne GRIFFITHS in the café after the event. It was clear to me how delighted she was to also complete parkrun number 50 surrounded by friends and family (34:12)

There were 25th runs for Amro MAAROUF (24:42) and Peter REYNOLDS (25:42).
3 participants chalked up their 10th milestone. Youngster Harry HICKS (33:33) was all the 3’s on his 10th parkrun (my lucky number). Young runner Robyn BIRDSELL (33:51) impressed, with Tim DYSON making it a clean sweep (25:16).

Ken ARCHER no doubt has his sights set on parkrun number 100, after safely completing his 99th (30:24).

It was “double delight” for one pair of winners. Jacob CHAMPION shone on his 1st ever parkrun (21:58). Mark CHAMPION was last seen walking across the car park with his collar up like Eric CANTONA after ringing the “PB bell” (27:33).

Several young runners all hit “PB stardom”. For those who haven’t already been mentioned, here is the roll of honour.

Thomas PRICE (25:52), Layla BURGESS (29:28), Teigan INGHAM (33:35) and Maisie HOWITT (35:34).

Elsewhere, Hinckley RC continued their weekend success, this time courtesy of Amanda KNIGHT (24:21 NEW PB). Regular Michael WYANT (BADGERS) was another to leave with “NEW PB” next to his name on the official results list (22:57). The popular Claire CARTMELL worked hard for a new best (31:00). An event which also saw local icon Paul OWEN feature (50:22).

A special mention to the supportive Michy’s Marvels who all looked so proud to wear club colours in the café afterwards and best wishes for the speedy return of the much missed Sharon WHITEHEAD.

In the week I posted pictures of me in Nuneaton with novelist and author George Eliot…we grew up on the same estate. Since I posted those images times have become more testing. I will conclude this weeks run report with 2 of my favourite quotes from a real talent.

“WEAR A SMILE AND HAVE FRIENDS…WEAR A SCOWL AND HAVE WRINKLES”

“IT IS NEVER TOO LATE TO BE WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN”

 

International……..Women’s………..Day 07/03/2020 | Event #335

For today’s parkrun run report I thought I would split the report into 3 sections to highlight the amazing community parkrun is.

International
Parkrun is a truly global event. When you stand on the start line you are part of a global gathering of millions of parkrunners. There are now events in United Kingdom, Australia, South Africa, Ireland, Russia, Poland, United States, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, Italy, Japan, Sweden, France, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Namibia, Finland, Malaysia, Swaziland and the Falkland Islands. At Kingsbury today, Alison Symonds-Taylor ran her 313 parkrun. She has run parkruns in Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Singapore, Sweden and the USA. Very inspiring.

Women’s
I decided to find out how many ladies ran the first ever parkrun at Bushy park. Google didn’t know. From the photo I think it was 5 out of 13 which is just under 40%. Today at Kingsbury there were 167 women and girls out of 370 parkrunners. That is just over 45%. I wonder if those ladies knew how huge parkrun would become.
At Kingsbury today 19 ladies got PBs. One of these was given a firm talking to by her mother not to run fast today as they have a Fradley 10k tomorrow. The parental chat went well. 24 ladies completed their first ever parkrun today. It is a nerve-wracking day when you do your first parkrun but soon you will wonder what other people do on a Saturday morning and why are they not sliding through mud. As the group says this girl runs.

Day
After last week’s damp parkrun today was a slidy parkrun. The puddles were drying out nicely, but the mud was very slidy in places. Well done to everyone for staying vertical. Today there were 370 parkrunners who completed the course. Thank you to all the volunteers Hannah Coogan, Ian Horton, Mike Shelton, Neil Thorne, Matthew Green, Tim Gould, Amanda Gould, Lisa Stretton, James Stretton, Sylvia Burns, Jenny Reeve, Matthew Jackson, Jackie Rutherford, Samuel Eales, Timothy Gray, Katharine Gould, Madeleine Gould, Susan Hann, Sara Hawkins, Sarah Dennis, Lucie Brady, Jayne Holmes, Brian Welsh, Margaret Jordan, Ken Jordan, Christine Norris, Emma Walton, Jamie Walton, Alison Dolphin, Gavin Clinton, Peter Coogan and Claire Louise Martin. If you would like to volunteer in the future please email the core team kingsburywater@parkrun.com

There were 39 PBs today and Scott Fowler completed his 50th milestone run. There was an unofficial milestone from Paul Owen as he completed his 150th run. Well done to you all.

The first three males to slide through the finish funnel were Matthew Tonks 18:52, Tom Lindley 19:54 PB and Morgan Hill 20:22 first timer. The first three women were Erin Bush 20:37, Kate Daniels 21:37 first timer and Stef Jiggins 23:39 first timer.

The best news of the day is parkrun day is 14.3% of the week so only a week till we can do it all again.

 

Slip slide away or mud glorious mud! #334

Today was a first for Park runners and volunteers alike as the last time 29th February fell on a Saturday was in 1992...
...meaning nobody has EVER been to parkrun on 29th February until now.
Your next opportunity will be in 2048……..

Once every four years, an extra day is added to the month of February, taking it from 28 to 29 days. The Earth orbits the sun once every 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 47 seconds, but our calendar is only 365 days long. This means making up for the shortfall.
The extra day was added to February because Roman emperors named months after themselves (July and August, for example) and then kept on poaching extra days to make their months longer, in a kind of "mine is longer than yours" competition. February was left short at 28 days, and was the obvious choice to even out the calendar.
This year the world adds the extra day, and with the addition of February 29 comes all sorts of traditions and superstitions.
Today 216 runners and 27 hi viz heroes took advantage of the extra day and endured the mud, rain, mud, cold, mud, puddles, mud followed by more mud, did I mention mud! One advantage of the puddles was it washed the mud off.
As you all know February 29th on occurs every 4 years on a leap year, talking of leap 18 Park runners leapt into KWP for the first time, 12 slipped and slide their way through the mud and puddles to a New PB.
Congratulations on your New PB to Phoebe O CONNOR, Paul GIBBS, Beth RUTHERFORD, William PRICE, Marie PAGEIX, Claire GUFFICK, Noah MILLER, Teigan INGHAM, Diane BROWN, Sandra BRYAN, Phillip ONION.
Taking full advantage of this special date to the full and enjoying the mudding conditions are the following milestones:
Tracy O'NEILL 100
Adam SPENCER 50
Jonathan TOON 50
5 facts about leap years
1. Women can propose to men.
This tradition is probably the best known and dates back to 5th Century Ireland when St Brigid allegedly struck a deal with St Patrick, allowing women to propose on February 29.

2. Babies can join a club.
Those born on the 29th have exclusive membership to the The Honour Society of Leap Year Day Babies.

3. Leap Year Capital of the World.
The city of Anthony, which sits across the border of two American states - Texas and New Mexico - has nominated itself the Leap Year Capital of the World. It holds a four-day festival to celebrate the occasion, including a huge birthday party for Leap Day babies.

4. Modern Olympics are always held in a Leap Year.
This appears to be a fluke - it's a good fun fact. This year's Olympics will be Rio de Janiero in Brazil. A Leap Year also marks the US Presidential elections.

5. February 29 also marks Rare Disease Day.
There are about 7000 diseases considered rare. Examples include Crohns Disease and Tourette Syndrome.

So will there be any shock or surprise engagement announcements on the KWP page?
Finally a huge thank you to the core team and the following 27 hi viz volunteers for making the event today possible, your hi viz heroes were Brian ADAMS, Amanda ARNOLD, Richard BENHAM, Richie BUNN, Tricia BUNN, Hannah COOGAN, Tim GOULD, Timothy GRAY, Matthew GREEN, Lee GUFFICK, Susan HANN, Jayne HOLMES, Ian HORTON, Alexander INGHAM, James INGHAM, Michelle INGHAM, Ian JACKSON, Matthew JACKSON, Sharon JACKSON, Ken JORDAN, Margaret JORDAN, Noel LAWTON, Jo LUCAS, Sarah OAKES, David PRICE, Teresa SATCHELL, Katie SHARPE.

 

KWp Event #333 – 3 is the magic number!

I had been struggling to think of a suitable theme for this weeks race report, however it suddenly became much easier when today’s race director, Tim Gould, announced that this was event number 333 at Kingsbury Water Park! Thanks Tim, that has made my job as race reporter so much easier.

The 333 event saw 480 of you enjoy the lovely (and rare!) sunny conditions, lulling us all into thinking that the paths might be just a bit firmer under foot. It was soon apparent that they were just as muddy as always, although there was a definite reduction in the number of puddles today, disappointing the puddle jumpers out there.

First runner home was Badger Mark Repton in a time of 18:50, a new PB for him. First female to cross the finish line was Louise Pugh (21:59). Well done both of you!

So, now back to the theme. Today will mainly be brought to you by the number 3.

There were 3 lovely park runners celebrating big milestones today (how ironic that there should be 3!) Steve Mosley (27:25) and Avril Williams both completed their 50th park runs today, whilst Gary Beechey (33:22) hit his 100th park run! Congratulations to you all.

Toby Dennis (20:03 New PB!) was the 3rd male finisher and Esther McCullagh (23:50) was the 3rd female.

Andy Stretton (23:11) was the 33rd finisher, whilst Louise Eling (34:04) was the 333 person to cross the line.

Completing their 3rd park runs today were Dean Brown (23:07), Virgil Benciu (24:26 New PB), George Thomas (25:48 New PB), David Jukes (25:50 New PB), Carl Moulding (26:25 New PB), Judith Matthews (27:02), Marie Pageix (28:11 New PB), Beth Rutherford (29:57), Wendy Thorpe (29:58 New PB), Emma Reid (30:11), Daniel Cooney (31:55), Katie McFall (32:41), Mark Pike (33:23), Samantha Watson (34:15 New PB), Lee Kilkenny (36:30), Chanel Lander (38:58 New PB), Dawn Wilkinson (39:47 New PB) and Phillip Onion (51:43). Well done all, I’m pretty sure that after 3 park runs you will now be hooked!

3 lovely ladies ran just under 7 miles together to get to Kingsbury Water Park, then completed park run together too. Well done to Lil Souter (29:34), Sharon Jackson (29:14) and Rachel Shelton (28:20), great work!

Finally, and coincidentally, I was the 33rd female to finish the run today and it’s my 3rd time volunteering. Loving how these figures tie in perfectly with my race report theme.

Whilst on the subject of volunteers, massive thanks needs to go to those who volunteered their time today to ensure that the event ran smoothly. I’ve already mentioned race director, Tim Gould who ensured that all runners were briefed and at the start line ready for action. Huge thanks go to Sue King, George King, Neil Thorne, Matthew Gren, Alison Dolphin, Timothy Gray, David Ash, Sarah Maddaford, Lesley Starling, Christine Norris, Stephen Andrews, Richard Benham, Gemma Follis, Samuel Eales, Susan Hann, Alex Sandham, Ken Jordan, Jamie Walton and Paul Daniels.

The remainder of the volunteers were members of Michy’s Marvels Running Group (one of the friendliest and most fun groups in the area, even if I do say so myself!) so thank you so much marvel-lous marvels – Amanda Arnold, Lucie Brady, Georgina Dann, Samantha Elston, Melissa Stonard, Emma Walton, Michelle Windridge and Rob Windridge. Whenever our group take over the marshalling activities there are always lots of comments about the amount of energy and noise we bring. Today’s noisiest marshalls award, as voted for by the runners, goes to Georgina and Nick Dann who provided music and an abundance of support at marshall point 1! Awesome work you pair.

If you haven’t volunteered before, please make sure you do so! It’s brilliant fun and a great way to support Kingsbury Park Run. You will have a real sense of achievement and feel very appreciated, plus you get to know that you’ve helped the event to run smoothly and successfully.

A special mention goes to Gavin Crockwell (Norm) who guided the fabulous Ian McNamara to a great park run time of 35:51 today.

Another special mention for Mike Duggan (25:04) who at the age of 79 finished in 78th position! Well done Mike, that is a great run!

My final special mention is for Jessica Joyce who completed today’s park run on a pair of roller blades! No mean feat in the mud. Jessica has realised that it will be an awful lot easier to run the course so will be attempting this next time instead. Great work Jessica, I reckon that might be a Park Run first!

I have to pass on apologies from one of our furry runners – Neo the Northern Inuit. Apparently Neo was feeling particularly friendly today so, instead of running in a well behaved manner, decided to say hello to every other furry runner out on the course which caused a few of our less furry runners to stumble over him! His owner referred to Neo as being naughty for this and the fact that he also wanted to stop and sniff every tree around the course too. I am the biggest dog lover in the world so therefore I spent a long time chatting with Neo after the run and I was able to establish that the reason for his out of character behaviour today was due to him feeling slightly embarrassed that his owner had popped her running leggings on inside out! I’m sure we can all sympathise with Neo and let him off on this occasion.

Well, that’s my first attempt at report writing over with. Hopefully you’ve enjoyed it. Thanks to everyone who make Park Run what it is.

 

KWp Event #332

This week I visited Kingsbury Water parkrun for my 83rd different parkrun location, it was a very fresh morning in Kingsbury, but with some lovely views across the lakes.

Milestones this week were Stephen Fagg and Leon Millership both running their 200th parkrun, no t-shirt, but a notable mention! T-shirts winging their way to three runners in the coming weeks from parkrun HQ, all running their 50th parkruns were Steve Sanders, Michelle Ingham and James Ingham. Congratulations and welcome to 17 people who joined the parkrun World by doing their first parkrun this weekend.

Chris Horton was first finisher in a time of 18:37, first female was Nicole King in 20:49 and visiting Kingsbury for the first time. Special mention to Charlie Smith who finished in second place and as a Junior 11-14, well done! Highest age grade was claimed by Charlie with 76.58%, closely followed by Chris Horton in 76.19%.

Finally thank you to all the volunteers who waved, encouraged and smiled for the parkrunners on a cold, February morning!

 

Here come the girls!


** How are those New Years Resolutions going? Well don't stop believing! **
Just a little something to consider as the next Parkrun will be February the 1st .... so if you weren't already one of the seasoned regulars, keep it up, we are a friendly bunch and whatever your aim, it is achievable! Parkrun is fun, inclusive and no matter your ability everyone is welcome.
So, Event 331 means that since January the 28th waaaay back in 2019 - Kingsbury Water Park and the Team have put on a fantastic 47 events in total, normally only stopped when the Park is flooded. I would personally like to thank the Core Team and those behind the scenes at the Water Park who make all this possible. It is done with the good will, dedication and genorisity of those who volunteer and give up their time to come and cheer on and support the many hundreds that run, jog, push, or are pulled along with those who enjoy a nice-walk in a beautiful venue.
Today 529 of you turned out, the weather appeared ominous to begin with, even l was considering donning my hi-vis run jacket, l am pleased to say that the rain held off and it was a great course to run. There was still mud aplenty, puddles and other running hazards to avoid or tackle with gusto, each persons approach different! Rich Benham was your Run Director for the day and a special mention to the running group "This Girl Runs" who took on most of the Volunteering Roles for the day and they did a wonderful job. Whilst on the subject of the volunteers, these are your other Hi-Vis heroes and without them then Parkrun would not be possible so thanks to all 32 of you today:
Stephanie ATTENBOROUGH, Emma BARLEY, Sharon BATH, Richard BENHAM, Penny BENNION, Hannah COOGAN, Gail FINDON, Gemma FOLLIS, Tracy FORD, Rebecca GILL, Timothy GRAY, Karen GREEN, Susan HANN, Fiona HILL, Denise HOWELL, Lorraine HOWELL, Carol HULL, Sarah JONES, Sally MALIK, Sarah MORLEY, Pauline MORRIS, Christine MORTIMER, Donna O'CONNOR, Julie PARKER, Tania PHILLIPS, Helen SMITH, Lil SOUTER, Johanne TURNER, Claire WARD, Steve WELLER, Emma WILSON, Angie WOODALL.
There is certainly one name a-miss from the credits whom l met some months ago whilst tail-walking a certain Paul MCNAMARA (36:54) who today was guiding his brother Ian MCNAMARA to a very good time of 36:53, well done to you both.
 
** In a regular Run Report Feature, it's now time for the stats: **
The first male back today was John JENKINS, only 5 seconds shy of his PB (18:36 | Tamworth AC) and first female Catherine CHARLTON  who was enjoying a spot of tourism away from the more usual haunt of Colwick Parkrun (20:02 | Vegan Runners). Milestones were harder to come by today but Joanne KITCHING (City of Portsmouth AC) completed her 100th in a time of 24:22 on her first run out here, Harriet LLOYD completed her 50th run (40:51) and completing their 10th runs were the youngsters Freddie BURGESS (25:31) and Noah CUNLIFFE (27:07) - well done to all four of you. A total of 46 Running Clubs & Groups were represented by their runners today from around the UK and beyond?! Who knows...
A number of us achieved PB's today including third placed Steve JOURES (18:56), Anne WHITBY-SMITH (25:11), Thomas AINSWORTH (19:17 | Tamworth AC). Beth RUTHERFORD in only her 2nd ever Parkrun notching a new PB of 23:39, Bill SINCLAIR (25:07), Andrew WEBB (21:30), John GREATREX (22:18) all achieving new times.  In only what l can assume to be sibling rivalry we have brothers Freddie ROSS-GLYNN (26:51) and Zachary ROSS-GLYNN (37:27) both making PB's.
Others of note are Mark HARRISON (24:10), Rebecca PINNER (26:23), Kerrie SHORE (26:49), Daniel JORDANOU (22:30) and Megan GRIFFITHS (26:02). In the line for a new record was Nadine RICHARDS (28:09) and with a big of swagger across the line was Justin SASSE (26:30).
Parkrun regular and often a volunteer Samuel VERNON came in with a PB of 24:45, closely followed in the age gradings by Lauren KELLY (26:24), Jason COBB (25:30 | Newark Striders RC), James DEAN (24:44 | Black Country Triathletes), Michael IBBS (27:51), Katy SAINSBURY (28:51), Adam HILL (24:03), Claire GUFFICK (30:55 | Peel Road Runners), Josie JOURES (29:08), well done to you all.
Also nailing it today was Paul GIBBS (26:19), Charlie NEALE (25:08) and the Badgers duo of Stephanie ATTENBOROUGH (30:03 | Badgers) and Kate RATHBONE (38:37 | Badgers). Sealing a swift time was Matthew Harris (26:40), Kirsty SANDS (29:36), Paul MORRELL (27:59), Kirsten MACKENZIE (33:39), Nola COLLINS (33:18), Mark HUTTON (27:42), Paul RANDALL (34:33), Adam MASEFIELD (31:33) and Mark PIKE (32:43).
Not out of place in the Water Park was Andrew WOOD achieving a PB time (32:09) along with Nichola RAYBOULD (40:07), Jenny PEMBERTON (34:27), Marie WETTON (36:00 | This Girl Runs - Tamworth), Wendy WEETMAN (42:45) and not able to be seperated at the close were the young female duo of Keira COLLINS (41:07) and Emelia FOX (41:07).
The final group of PB'ers are Sheena BROOKES (41:08), Chantal KIDD (37:55), Jack RAYBOULD-BIRD (37:22), Tammie EVANS (37:53), Ben MASON (33:18), Poppy GATES (40:02), Rachel BRADSHAW (41:35), Fiona FOX (45:10), Lisa GILVARRY (45:08), Conor OGRADY (40:02) and last but by no means least well done to Gary PERKINS with his own PB of 52:31.
 
** Did anybody hear about Volunteer-uary? **
Well at the start of the year Louise VERNON (33:17) conceived the above notion based upon various terms such as vegan-uary & the Red T-shirt mental health awareness campaign. I am pleased to say that l have seen new names appearing on the future volunteer roster and l can say, as l have now undertaken a number of roles from Tail Walk to Funnel Manager across to today's Run Report Writer and in the immediacy Marshaling & Pre-Event Setup that it is very rewarding being part of the team, helping and encouraging others. If you give up only one run a month or even consider dual roles for those fast enough the options are there and you will be shown what needs to be done. If you head across to the Future Volunteer Roster on the Kingsbury Water Parkrun homepage it not only provides an explanation of the roles, but also tells you where to email if you see a role that you would like to take on ..... !
Go for it you have nothing to lose - future roster | Kingsbury Water parkrun
Just before l go - if Volunteering really isn't your thing - perhaps head on over to Parkrun Forever where you can donate anything from £3 a month to help keep Parkrun running for the 4 million park runners worldwide. Over the last 10 months over 5,000 park runners have done exactly that and those contributions in *2019* assisted in:
  • 374 new Parkrun Events globally
  • Parkrun was introduced in Japan, our 21st Country - l wonder if they will create one beginning with **X** ?! for when l get near completing my A2Z of Parkruns - Anyway, l digress;
  • 1,256,903 people started their Parkrun journey, l was one of them;
  • More than 1,700 existing weekly events are supported;
  • 14,638,713 Parkruns were completed.
Let's help it move forward into 2020, consider donating - parkrunforever.com/
** Final Comments **
On a final final note, if you are reading this and you have not been to Kingsbury Water  .. please you must make it one on your 'TO-DO' list .. you will not be disappointed. Today, 20% of the turnout were first time runners and tourists (110/529) whom l hope each have enjoyed the experience and also the Running Show afterwards!
Thanks.
 

KWP Park Run 330

Having fun in the mud

Wow! What a beautiful setting for a parkrun! I've said it multiple times and I'll say it again that parkrun tourism, has given me the excuse to explore the UK (and beyond) and in doing so I have found little nuggets of perfection tucked away in places I would have never looked. I'm so glad parkrun brought me to Kingsbury Water parkrun.

I had a lovely discussion with the parkrun photographer Lucie Brady, before and after my run around the course. She stated: "Everyone here is really friendly." This statement was borne out immediately, as parkrunners (local and touring) began to approach me and engage me in conversation. Those conversations provided me with useful information about other parkruns that I may visit in the future.

I'll admit to being a tad cold 15 minutes before the start, although the close proximity of the carpark to then parkrun start did allow me to hug the car heating system for longer than might otherwise been the case. With the temperature hovering at around 2 degrees, I was dressed in more layers than an onion. As I made my way around the double lap course, I began to shed as many layers as decency allowed. Luckily no one was subjected to me running in my parkrun bikini. Perhaps next time? (I suspect there's something in parkrun rules or the Geneva Convention that would prevent that, to protect other parkrunners!)

The course itself was ever so slightly muddy, which made for some interesting running on my part. But not just me! On the first lap many of the runners, joggers and walkers found ways to navigate each muddy section. Some found a longer route around the worst of the mud. Some jumped over muddy sections with the grace of gazelles. And some tip toed through the mud delicately. However, getting lower extremities caked in mud was an inevitability and by start of the second lap the general approach of most participants seemed to be: ' to heck with it..' as they splashed through the puddles and ploughed through then mud.

I personally perfected the art of staying on my feet which involved flapping my arms and muttering 'oh dear' and 'that was close', accompanied by a little giggle. It's a tried and tested method of staying upright which you are actively encouraged to emulate. You can omit the giggle if you want!

It may seem a little sad, but I actually took considerable pride in my Picasso-like mud painting on my feet and legs... to such an extent that I look a photograph or two. Dont judge me! (I know I wasnt alone! You know who you are! Haha)

In short, I had a very enjoyable morning. Not only did I get to complete a parkrun (on a day when a few of the locals ones to my home town were cancelled due to the weather) but I got to celebrate with others who had attained parkrun landmarks. Well done to all those mentioned in the Run Director's briefing.

 

More headlines than you can shake a pompom at!! Event #329

This morning, 535 individuals took to the trail and completed a slightly blowy Kingsbury Water parkrun. 62 of you (that’s 11.6%) achieved new personal bests – amazing stuff. We were joined by 79 first timers (14.8%) - 49 of which were completely shiny brand new to parkrun. For me, that first parkrun was the hardest – we hope that today was the start of something brilliant for you. They (whoever “they” are), say that it takes about 3 months to form a new habit, so the good news is that as long as you keep coming until the end of March, you’ll be hooked – that is, if you’re not already.

Members of 23 different clubs took park – with their members covering just under 15% of the field which shows just how universal parkrun is. Well done to David HILL (18:24) and Alison LUNDY (19:39) for being the first make and female runners back – phenomenal. Regardless of times, well done to everyone who completed the course today. To the person who was injured by one of the bridges today – I hope you’re ok.

HEADLINE! MAN STAYS ON BIKE!!!

Against the odds and defying all expectations, core team member Matt “the slider” GREEN (42:46) took to the pedals again and crushed it as lead bike today. Not satisfied with his stint on the bike, he then took to the trails and overtook the tail walkers to complete his own duathlon (unbelievably, he’s not the only speedster to have managed this). Well done, and thank you.

SUB-HEADLINE! 3KM MARKER IN APPROXIMATELY THE RIGHT PLACE, ISH!

There has occasionally been some, much, none and lots of controversy not only around the position of the 3km marker, but it’s entire existence. It comes at that point in the run where the blood is starting to pound in your eardrums, and your vision is a little blurry after trying to keep up with the pace you set in the first kilometre. In a KWp first, not only can I confirm it *does* exist, but that wherever it was today, it was approximately, sort of, in the right place. Ish. Thanks Mike SHELTON (22:50) and Ian HORTON (22:37) for taking the trouble to get that right this morning. Let’s hope Sharon JACKSON (29:26) (setting up next week) took note of it’s placement when she ran past it this morning!

SUB SUB HEADLINE! Woman runs parkrun non-stop!

Whatever our abilities, we’re all welcome at parkrun. We all have goals that we want to achieve; sometimes it’s about getting some fresh air once a week, sometimes it’s about meeting new people and forging new friendships, sometimes it’s about times, sometimes it’s about distances, sometimes it’s about pushing our boundaries – and many of us have started in the same place. I vividly remember the first time I managed to complete the course at Kingsbury having not stopped to walk even once, back in January 2018. I think this is something that many of us, at one point or another, have strived to achieve, and today Kingsbury regular Fiona HILL (48:20) ran 5k non-stop. Massive congratulations! To all of you, whatever your reason for coming to Kingbury Water Park each week, well done, we know you can do it, whatever it is.

ANOTHER HEADLINE! Many milestones hit!

A regular feature of a good parkrun is those of us reaching certain Milestones each week. This week was no different as we saw four individuals reach recognised milestones! Youngster Jacob HARRIS (36:00) completed his 10th 5k event - no mean feat for young legs. I’ve always thought that event distances ought to be reduced in accordance with the length of our legs – I'm sure us shorter people run further

We then had a trio of individuals complete their 100th parkrun this morning! Well done Andrew MASON-WILLIAMS (24:53), Bob HICKS (25:03) and Richard “the bird whisperer” BENHAM (29:27). Some of us celebrate milestones in a quiet and understated manner, happy with our achievement and appreciative of a shout out. Others go a bit further in those celebrations – bringing balloons, masks, cake and fanfare. I go for understated myself (pahahahahahahahahaha), but the bird king of Kinsgbury, Mr. Insta, and CORE team member Rich had a bevy of swans around him today – flanked by Rachael SHELTON (29:18), Matthew JACKSON (29:17) amongst others. He carried his balloon around the course with pride, wearing the t-shirt that Gemma FOLLIS (29:27) had personalised for him, and cheered on from the crowds by parkrun regular Laura EDWARDS who’s still sadly on the injury bench.
There were also a couple of unofficial milestones reached today. I noticed when rifling through today’s results page that Amanda Jayne HANSON (36:35) completed her 200th run; well done on knocking 3 minutes off last week’s time.
I reached my 50th volunteer – ably assisted by the lovably cute Bradley SHELTON occasionally pecking my face off with his swan mask.

LAST Headline! Volunteers are awesome!

Volunteers are awesome,
volunteers at parkrun are part of a team,
volunteers are awesome,
helping parkrunners today.

Volunteering is better when we all muck in,
side by side we’ll make a parkrun every Saturday,
let’s 5k forever,
we can walk, we can jog, we can run,
as long as we have volunteers.

Volunteers are awesome,
volunteers at parkrun are part of a team,
volunteers are awesome,
helping parkrunners each week.

A total rip-off of the Lego movie (yes, I know that was AGES ago) #earworm #sorrynotsorry. Thank you from everyone to all 33 of today’s volunteers:

Brian ADAMS, Stephanie ATTENBOROUGH, Richard BENHAM, Peter BLACK, Tricia BUNN, Richie BUNN, Paul DANIELS, Laura EDWARDS, Sarah FRENCH, Timothy GRAY, Rachael GREEN, Matthew GREEN, Lee GUFFICK, Claire GUFFICK, Susan HANN, Ann HILL, Ian HORTON, Ian JACKSON, Vicky JENNINGS, Brian JONES, Margaret JORDAN, Ken JORDAN, Corinne OLDHAM, Mark REYNOLDS, Sarah REYNOLDS, Teresa SATCHELL, Mike SHELTON, Vikki SMITH, Lil SOUTER, Melissa STONARD, Susan THOULD, Alison UPTON, Sean WHITE

On a related note, 30 of today's 535-strong field were members of the parkrun v25 club – the purple t-shirt gang – the group of individuals recognised by parkrun as having volunteered at parkrun on 25 different days. I hope you all enjoyed your well deserved runs this morning.

If you’ve been thinking about volunteering and you haven’t already jumped into a blank spot on the volunteer roster – please do pop over to the page an take a look at what needs to be done. I’ve had a go at most things (except lead bike – I'm still working on staying upright and going quickly enough for that, I could do it as long as no-one wanted a time quicker than around 25 minutes. My general thought on these things is that if I can do it, anyone can.

I lied, there’s another headline!

I could use this platform for a bit of shameless self-promotion and tell you all that a couple of us are hosting a quiz on 29th February to raise money for charities that we’re supporting, but I won’t. I also won’t tell you to have a look on facebook for “Leap into Lil and Louises marathon quiz” for more information, and I won’t tell you to speak to me (Lil SOUTER) or Louise VERNON (31:14) if you have any related questions.

Whatever you’re doing this week, have fun. That’s enough reading for now, see you all next week!

 

Volunteer-uary

Event number 328 - 4th January 2020

Tim Gould. That’s it run report complete. He encapsulates what it is all about. He completed an amazing 100th volunteer at parkrun this morning, doing course setup this morning, watching the beautiful sunrise before going out again to run parkrun 209, as well as finishing in the top 25!

I know lots of you are doing dry January or Veganuary as part of your new year’s resolutions. I saw lots of RED January tops raising awareness for mental health issues. A parkrun survey found that people who volunteer at parkrun saw an improvement in their mental health. Why not make a resolution to give volunteering a try?
Whilst on the subject of volunteers, here are the rest of the Hi-Vis heroes all 37 who have got 2020 off to a fabulous start.

Mark ROBINSON • Claire Louise MARTIN • Jared KARIM • Katie THORNLEY • Tim GOULD • Yvonne FEASEY • Hannah COOGAN • Steven WATKINS • Brian ADAMS • Mike SHELTON • Judy PARKES • Simon POTTER • Jane BARRETT • Maxim VAN KNEARAKI-HORBWJI • Janet WILLENBRUCH • Sarah MADDAFORD • Timothy GRAY • Ian JACKSON • Andrew BURGESS • Richard BENHAM • Bethany DENNIS • Louise VERNON • Natasha O'CALLAGHAN • Laura EDWARDS • Tina MAYE • Ian MAYE • Steve PERRY • Susan HANN • Simon CLIFFORD • Emma WILSON • Simon HILL • Gareth DAVIES • Martin GEE • Jayne HOLMES • Tim HOLMES • Margaret JORDAN • Ken JORDAN

For all the people who like all the facts and figures, here they are for this week: -
507 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 67 were first timers and 43 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 34 different clubs took part.

Peter Hackett came in 1st with a time of 17.46, that’s twice in a week he’s ran KWP after a gap of several months since his last visit. Louise Andrews bagged the 1st female in a time of 22.18, her 11th run at KWP a spot of tourism from her local Coventry parkrun.

Other milestones include Euan Wilson, well done on your junior 10. Keir HARDY, Dave JENKINSON, Dave BIRD and Arta BALTINA all completed their 50th and a lovely red t-shirt will be winding its way to you very shortly.

Did I mention Volunteer-uary and the fabulous purple volunteer 25 t-shirt yet?

Other facts and figures overall for KWP include: -
The male record is held by Ellis CROSS who recorded a time of 15:01 on 22nd December 2018 (event number 278).

The female record is held by Hayley CARRUTHERS who recorded a time of 16:01 on 20th July 2019 (event number 308).

The Age Grade course record is held by Elaine SHERWIN (and dog) who recorded 101.13% (16:11) on 7th September 2019 (event number 314).
Kingsbury Water parkrun started on 20th July 2013. Since then 14,456 participants have completed 108,139 parkruns covering a total distance of 540,695 km, including 18,605 new Personal Bests. A total of 883 individuals have volunteered 7,039 times.

For me the most interesting stat here is that after over 300 parkruns we have less than 900 different volunteers over the years. Why not help us to break this figure at the start of the new year? Did I mention Volunteer-uary?

As well as the 67 doing their 1st parkrun today, I’d like to mention those who have come back for parkrun number 2, liked what they saw and came back for more. Dad Rob (36:41) and son Adam Masefield (34:45) join that group, a week and a decade between their 1st and second parkruns!

Whilst accidentally starting near the front I was chatting to Mike Shelton (22:00) and his plans for the year which included another marathon as well as the potential of an ultra. I also ran fleetingly with David Price (29:57) and Sue King (32.16) who both have alongside me began London marathon training in earnest at the start of the new year.

What I love most about parkrun is the diverse people it attracts. I chatted at the start to another complete newbie, who I think was called Paul who normally run alone but decided to give us a try today. I hope to see you again next week! We can’t go a week without mentioning the lovely Fiona Hill. Minus the unicorn horn she got closer to her aim this year of running parkrun nonstop. Sam Starkey started his 2020 with a finishing time of 20:20. Steve Weller was delighted to be running a sub 40 parkrun in a time of 38.22 after being very poorly in hospital back in October. May his road to recover continue. Ian McNamara shaved another almost 3 minutes off his New Year’s Day time, once again being guided by Mark Robinson his third volunteering stint in a fortnight on his return to parkrun. The fabulous Steve Perry also has the impressive stats for 2020 - 2 parkruns and 2 volunteers, running and scanning on New Year’s Day, whilst today taking on the role of lead bike then still running around in as time of 46.51.

Parkrun has so many stories to tell.

If you’ve kept to your resolutions long may they continue. It’s not too late to make a new one. Email in to kingsburywater@parkrun.com if you’d like to volunteer for the 1st or 101st time, or chat to our communications person at the start of parkrun and check out the roster for the up and coming weeks.

 

New Year, New Decade, New Attendance Record!

Well a new year and decade kicked off with a venue attendance record. Yes 824 runners arrived at Kinsgbury for run number 327. 38 volunteers were well drilled, not to mention highly appreciated, as an incredible 54 personal bests were marked and 183 sampled the occasion for the first time...how fitting that one 1st timer was young Delilah KINGSBURY. (49:15)

It was more a case of "MY MY MY" than "WHY WHY WHY". Popular 80's music fan Hannah COOGAN was today's run director and addressed the masses stood on a park picnic bench, equipped with the new tannoy system. With a heavy swell of traffic eager to enter the park, the start time was delayed in order to allow everyone to be able to take part. Organised, smooth and executed to perfection not only from Hannah but to all involved...some might call the planning regimental.

How fitting then that first back today was 1st timer Daniel TITCOMB. The British Army runner left with the distinction of first back in 2020, with a quality performance and time of 16:43.

Another 1st timer was next home representing Wycombe Phoenix Harriers @ AC. Liam BUSBY hared around the circuit impressing with a top time of 17:22.
Locally based Peter HACKETT was the toast of running club Tamworth AC, as he made up the top 3 in a rapid 17:36.

There was more local success for the ladies. Olivia HARRIS was first back breaking sub 20 minutes. (19:53 Royal Sutton Coldfield AC)

Coventry based SPHINX AC athlete Ellie S DAVIES followed next in 23:15.
Lorraine BEASLEY was another to make a debut and did so in style for Aldridge RC. (23:21)

It's a true honour not only to write the first run report of 2020, but to mark the occasion with the new attendance record...I just love a good record me and a personal best.
In 2018 "Mr CHERRY" held various records including the most shuttlecocks caught with chopsticks in 1 minute and the most socks put on a foot in 30 seconds.

In the same year Andre ORTOLF held the record for the fastest 100 metres in an office chair and the most mustard tubes drunk in 1/2 a minute. (all of which are huge huge remarkable achievements)

Obviously this weeks run report has taken slightly longer to go through and pick out individual milestones. If anyone has been missed off I can only apologise.
It’s a joy to see so many first timers hitting individual milestones. Kate Elizabeth ADAMS ran her 150th. (28:15 Intrepid ESU). It was run number 200 for Sam OWEN. (24:48 Kings Heath RC 1st timer). Another 1st timer Thomas PALMER celebrated his 175th parkrun for Kidderminster @ Stourport AC (18:24), as did Chris JONES (28:02).
Mention the name "Matt GREEN" at Kingsbury and even the fish salute. The hard working volunteer and all round nice guy chalked up his 175th running 23:20 (BADGERS).
Louisa KINGSBURY certainly picked the right place to register run number 125. (49:26 Bournville Harriers)
Marcus FAIRBURN delighted his running colleagues at Peel Road Runners, as he enjoyed his century of outings. (27:16) Another Colin MICHAEL completed his 100th venue run.
2 BADGERS runners were joyous as they navigated parkrun 75. John DULSON is no stranger to the odd record himself, owning the current Midlands title for the most bottles of Lambrini consumed in 12 months. A feat that has resulted in him being recognised in the Queens new years honours list, as he is officially made a Prince. (33:03)
Another record breaker is KWP's very own pom pom queen Lil SOUTER. (28:09). Well done and thank you for the fundraising calendar.
There were nearly as many unicorns as runners this week. The highly regarded Simon (54:51) and Fiona (54:52) HILL were again in action, as they both completed their 50th parkruns together. Team HOLYOAK got in on the act (26:35) with Joanne DAVIES achieving her 50th for North Warwickshire based club BADGERS. (27:17)
There was more success for Peel Road Runners as Wendy BOWYER (36:10) hit the magic 50. (much to the delight of Paul DANIELS (43:58) )
Andrew GODBER did his 50th run in 32:38, as Rich PRICE turned on the style with a PB for double delight. (30:13)
Young Evie FOREST hit the 25 mark. (23:42)
The following all finalised their 10th parkruns: Ryan HUGHES (24:25 1st timer Lonely Goat RC), Francois JEAN (32:39), Jason KING (30:57 1st timer), Alex MCINTOSH (21:27 1st timer), Shellie REEVES (27:05), Jack ROSS (30:37), Mandip THANDI (23:22 1st timer Aldridge RC), Mandy RESTELL (30:02 BADGERS), Jason PITCHER (Knowle and Dorridge RC 21:33 1st timer), Alice MASON-WILLIAMS (32:08), Sandra CAIRNS (33:06 1st timer Chasewater Runners), Steven SMITH (37:25), Samantha COLES (1:08:37), Emelia PICKETT (36:32), Alex HALL (32:07), Aimee CLARK (27:40 Tamworth AC), Jenson PICKETT (27:33), Kester WATERMAN (27:25 1st timer Colchester @ Trending AC) and George ALLEN (1st timer Halesowen A @ CC 25:23).
Mark ROBINSON (38:01)raised a glass to his 25th volunteer stint, as he made a welcome return with running buddy Ian MCNAMARA. (38:01)
Julie GARBETT started the new year in fine form, as she completed a parkrun PB double. Kelly SMILEY was no doubt delighted, as she kick started 2020 with a PB. (41:03)
"Mr Sleek" Richard CHESTER propelled himself to PB stardom, (25:20) as Kingsbury hardman Rich BENHAM closed in on his 100th parkrun with a time of 30:14.
Kevin DICK from Sphinx AC got a new PB (23:29) and Gary BEECHEY bagged himself a new best, much to the delight of the crowd. (32:58)
Fiona REIDY (35:12) kicked off her London marathon training, as did avid Birmingham City FC fan Pierre MANN (27:29 PB).
Several young talents got to ring the "PB BELL": Jayden MARSH (36:24), Henry WHITEHILL (32:52), Henry HOWES (27:00), Harvey HOWES (22:09) and Ashley ONEIL (21:52) all shone.
Zoe COPE (33:00) was excitedly spurred on by her own personal play list on her 4 year parkrun anniversary...one favourite being Careless Whisper by Wham.
Retired semi professional tennis player and former Steps backing dancer Rachael SHELTON (27:34) jostled with a bloke wearing a dressing gown. In fact there was controversy in the finish funnel as both desperately tried to be the first to cross the line. (finally settling it with a game of rock, paper, scissors)
Fantasy football king and bearded wonder Gavin CLINTON (25:02), the elegant Laura ASHWOOD (28:14) and this Saturdays run director Judy PARKES (28:18) all got involved.
Crowd pleaser Susan THOULD popped a unicorn horn headband on my silvery locks for a selfie. Nivette CHESTER (30:54) dressed as an inflatable unicorn but it was the 14/1 favourite Stephanie WHITE who galloped in next following a photo selfie finish! (30:55)
In 2019 I had so many great moments at Kingsbury. After several weeks away it was superb this weekend to see so many friends again. I don't think I stopped smiling from when I arrived until I left...then carried on smiling when I got home. Hugs, high 5's, kisses, support, respect and genuine love.
I wish you all a very happy new year and 2020 x
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