(not) parkrun week 14 14-20 September

The parkrun results email is still saying week 11 but it's week 14 and 17,815 parkrunners took part in (not) parkrun across 20 countries, with an average finish time of 34:25. 41 of those runners represented Portobello and we welcomed first time (not) parkrunners Jennie Simpson and Russell Simpson.

7 Porty runners recorded a (not) parkrun personal best, congratulations to Catherine Patterson, David Mill, Jackie Blyth, Naomi Miall, Damian Harney, Gillian Renilson and Douglas Forrester! I also noticed that Catherine, David, Jackie and Naomi have never actually run a "real" parkrun so it's fantastic to see them taking part in (not) parkrun and hopefully it won't be long until we welcome them to participate in the real thing.

On the subject of the "real thing", there was a live Q&A session last Friday with CEO Nick Pearson and COO Tom Williams where it became clear that the previous intention to restart English parkruns by the end of October would now not be feasible.  If you missed it you can catch up here. This week's update can be found here, there is at least some positive news elsewhere in the world but understandably no schedule at the moment for the return of UK events.

Which leads me nicely onto the subject of UK events.....those who know me well will know that I love nothing more than a spot of parkrun tourism.  So imagine my delight when my holiday last week took me (and the lovely parkrunning Lynne Cowden) to the Isle of Bute for the day. Bute is home to Mount Stewart parkrun, which from Edinburgh is never going to be the easiest to visit on a Saturday morning - the morning ferry only runs to parkrun o'clock in the summer months, if it's delayed you'll miss the run, using the bus from the ferry is a timing gamble, so you either need to take the car on the boat (quite expensive) or arrange a lift, or you're facing a 4 mile speed session warm up! This seemed like the perfect opportunity to do a recce of the course and record a (not) parkrun time on an actual parkrun course......however, it was still closed due to Covid and we couldn't even get in the grounds. So we dried our tears and I started to formulate plan B......


.......plan B, maybe all was not lost in my quest for some (not) parkrun tourism, I'd be driving past Greenock parkrun on the way home.  The course description reads as easy to follow - out along the esplanade, turn back at the boat club to the yellow post, up to the boat club and return along the esplanade, enjoy the stunning across views across the Clyde as you run.....simple, what could possibly go wrong??

The weather is exactly what went wrong!! This is the view from Greenock parkrun on Friday morning! Now I'm by no means a fair-weather runner, I practically got trenchfoot earlier in the week, but this was not appealing and there definitely wasn't a view to appreciate! However, if you're looking for a flat fast course some time and can find a day when there isn't a gale blowing it would probably be a good one to visit.



So that's my (not)  parkrun tale of woe for the week :( Stay safe and keep running!



(not) parkrun week 11 24 – 30 August 2020

The results are in from week eleven at (not)parkrun with 18,220 parkrunners taking part across 20 countries, with an average finish time of 34:07 ⏱️.

37 Porty parkrunners took part so despite my challenge to see if we could make the top 5 in the UK attendance table we failed pretty miserably :( Still, all is not lost as 3 pulled in 3 first timers Graeme Thom, Chris Riley and Ian A Smith.....welcome!

There were 6 PBs this week and congratulations go to Mike Tucker, Chris Noden, Georgia Rogers, Gillian Renilson, Damian Harney & Elinor Evans.

Saturday was the overwhelmingly most popular day for a (not) parkrun with 18 of the 37 runs recorded. I can't help thinking this might also have had something to do with the abysmal weather earlier in the week, although I did manage a speed intervals session down at that other local parkrun course on Monday evening in stunning weather conditions with the added bonus of a fly-by from the Red Arrows (no photo of them I'm afraid).


The latest COVID update from parkrun can be found here. It is worth nothing that while some running clubs are now carrying out group training sessions again these are being held under very controlled conditions with a small number of participants and track & trace monitoring. Such sessions are regulated by Scottish Athletics who have put guidelines in place. Hopefully some of you are now enjoying a return to the gym or swimming pool too, I'm counting the days until mine reopens in 2 weeks time!

We are no doubt still some way off parkrun returning so if you're missing the buzz of group running or need a boost for your training please check out Jog Scotland or your local running club - links to their websites can be found on our web page.

Stay safe, keep running and don't forget to log those (not) parkrun 5k times!



(not) parkrun week 9 10 – 16 August 2020

Week 9 of (not) parkrun and globally 18,121 parkrunners took part across 20 countries, with an average finish time of 34:33.

We had 43 Porty parkrunners take part, a record attendance level for us......although I'll admit that some of them might have been bribed because we've been doing an activity challenge with Edinburgh Running Network and I offered a bonus point if they logged a 5k run and a (not) parkrun on Saturday! Hence, we also had a lot of newcomers - 14 in total who logged their first (not) parkrun this week.

11 (not) parkrunners ran a PB this week so congratulations to Chris Noden, Stephane Maurage, Damian Harney, Elinor Evans, Margaret Evans, Paul Barnaby, Eleanor MacKenzie, Jackie Blyth, Grant Bulloch, Mike Tucker and me!

Talking of PBs did anyone watch the Diamond League athletics on Friday evening? As a massive armchair athletics fan it was so nice to see some "normal" competition back and the highlight of the evening was the 5k world record being broken by Uganda's Joshua Cheptagai in a time of 12 minutes, 35.36 seconds!! If you fancy setting yourself a challenge to compete with that, or just want to improve your parkrun PB there's some workout suggestions on here.

Make sure you're following parkrun UK on facebook for the latest news re. COVID and other activities you can get involved with. The great parkrun quiz is still taking place every Saturday morning at 9am, no need to pre-register you just login on youtube and there will be a link to a google answer sheet. Keep logging those (not) parkrun times and stay safe!



(not) parkrun week 8 3 – 9 August 2020

Week eight of (not)parkrun saw 17,713 parkrunners taking part across 20 countries, with an average finish time of 34:15, with 29 of those representing the Portobello massive.

Welcome to (not)parkrun first timers Fiona Squires, Graham Robertson and Jim Brown. 5 Porty runners recorded a (not)parkrun PB, congratulations to Alison Elgin, Stephane Maurage, Luca Basso, Jackie Blyth and Chris Noden!

I had a bit of a lazy week as I was away visiting my folks and only managed to get in one run. It was so refreshing to have a change of scenery though and some different streets to run and walk round! One of my fellow ERNies introduced us to the "City strides" website at the start of lockdown - it pulls in your GPS data from Strava, Garmin etc and marks as complete all the streets you've run along, then there's % completion rates for cities and areas. It's become a bit addictive (don't say I didn't warn you!) but has encouraged me to run some new routes, although there's been a lot of dead end streets involved and a few funny looks from local residents too!

Last week parkrun announced they have completed a COVID-19 Framework, describing how events will operate in countries where an underlying level of community infection still remains. We are probably still a long way from parkrun resuming but at least this is a glimmer of hope that it's in the planning! We have not had chance to digest this as a core team to consider how it will affect how we operate at Porty.

It looks like we should have some decent running weather later this week so don't forget to log your 5k times. You can record it for any day of the week and may record more than once a week but only your fastest will show on the results table. Let us know where you're running and who with, it would be lovely to hear from you!

Stay safe and keep running!



(not) parkrun week 7 27 July – 2 August 2020

Week 7 of (not) parkrun saw 30 Porty parkrunners record their (not) parkrun 5k time.  3 first timers joined us this week so welcome to Loic Beaumatin, Luca Basso and Dorothy Grooby!

There must be some good training going on as 11 runners recorded a (not) parkrun PB! Congratulations to Ciara Webb, Valerie Chapman, Sally Johnson, Jim Sime, Siobhan Sellar, Eleanor MacKenzie, Adam Small, Joanna McKenzie, Nicola Fielding, Margaret Evans & Debbie Blackwood.

(not) parkruns can take place on any day of the week, although Saturday tends to be a popular day.  This week the most popular day was Thursday ( 6 runs), closely followed by Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday with 5 runs each. You can log a (not) parkrun time on any day of the week and may record more than one time per week but only your fastest of the week will show on the results table.

I've indulged in some (not) parkrun tourism this week with a trip to visit my parents for a change of scenery. It's been nice to run round some different streets and I even found a "home from home" narrow boat while on a walk along the canal. The owner told me it was named by the previous owners after the Portobello area of London where they'd lived and not after our favourite parkrun!


I also had a walk round the location of one of their nearby parkruns. Bonus point for anyone who came name the venue of this start line....... (clue, it's North West England).


We had a "postcard" in the mailbox from Stuart Donnelly this week who tells us "I'm running round and round in circles in Aberlady - nearly 3 loops of the village to get to 5k.  I started the year in pretty bad shape as my “real" parkrun times will attest, but after 8 weeks of running for 30 minutes every single day during lockdown, I’ve never been fitter or run faster - the key seems to be not going too fast to start, and not increasing the pace too quickly either; consistency Is the key and helps avoid injuries and niggles.  That and a bit of strength and conditioning along the way." 

Great training tip there from Stuart - so many people set off too fast and crash and burn, steady pacing is a real skill to master!

Keep up the training, enjoy the last week of the school holidays and stay safe!



(not) parkrun week 6 20 – 26 July 2020

Week 6 and the (not) parkrun run report writer has made a serious blunder and run a (not) parkrun PB and failed to log it!! The (not) parkrun equivalent of forgetting your barcode! It's a shame because I had a great run - this weekend my wonderful club Edinburgh Running Network held our annual "LP Run" virtually. Normally we'd all run round a track for 33min 20 seconds (if you're under the age of 30 get someone to explain this to you) to some carefully selected tunes and there are usually as many prizes for the post-run baking as there are for running (because we're that kind of club!).  Hence, this was how I found myself running 14 and a bit laps of a section of Inverleith Park on Saturday afternoon with a couple of fellow ERNies for company and to save me looking like a complete lunatic if I'd done it on my own. It was so nice to have other people to run with again and be able to have outdoor socially distanced coffee and cake afterwards, it really felt like a "normal" run session.

Elsewhere, amidst the traumas of Garmin connect being offline, 28 Porty parkrunners recorded their (not) parkrun time during the week and we welcomed (not) parkrun first timers Robin and Nicola Lockey (great to see this mum and daughter duo are still running together), Mike Tucker, Adam Small, Sheila Masson and Lynne Cowden.

7 runners recorded a (not) parkrun PB and congratulations go to Fiona Coutts, Stuart Donnelly, Chris Noden, Gillian Renilson, Jim Sime, Richard Parkin and Nicola Fielding!

For the first time since (not) parkrun began, Monday rather than Saturday, was the most popular day for recording a (not) parkrun time......perhaps I should take note of this and log it early in the week before I forget in future!!

An update from parkrun was issued this week and at this stage the core team only know as much as is being issued in the "public" briefings.

A full set of (not) parkrun results can be found here. We'd love to hear where you're running your 5k's so feel free to drop us an email or post on the facebook page.

Keep running and stay safe!



(not) parkrun week 5 13 – 19 July 2020

week 5 of (not) parkrun already! I genuinely don't know where the weeks are going at the moment, i'm sure last time I checked it was only May! Hopefully now that some of the restrictions have been lifted you're starting to get out and about a bit more and see more people. I had friends visiting this weekend which was lovely and we paid a visit to Portobello beach on Sunday morning, bumping into a few parkrunners along the way. Sadly we didn't manage a run over the weekend as a very long walk round town on Saturday left us all with rather tired legs!

This week 20,587 parkrunners took part in (not) parkrun across 20 countries, with an average finish time of 33:59.  35 of those represented Portobello parkrun and we welcomed first time (not) parkrunners Eilidh Still, Steven Starthearn and Simon Hayes.

The lockdown training continues to pay off with (not) parkrun PBs recorded by: Jackie Blyth, Eleanor MacKenzie, Debbie Blackwood, Natalie Gorrie, Claire Cakes Mathieson (oh how my waistline is missing her cakes!!), Chris Noden, Nye Ulferts Kilpatrick, Elinor Evans, Margaret Evans and Alison Elgin.

Saturday remains the most popular day for recording a (not) parkrun with 12 of the recorded 35 runs so it's great to see the tradition being kept alive!

The latest update from parkrun can be found here. It probably won't surprise you to know that there is no further news on a return date, so keep training and keep logging those (not) parkrun times! You can run your 5k where ever and whenever you like (I ran to the post office carrying a parcel last week!) and I've seen reports of runs in France and Germany this week, proving that even the parkrun tourism fans can still get their fix!

The full set of results history for (not) parkrun can be found here.


(not) parkrun week 4 6 – 12 July 2020

Week 4 of (not) parkrun already....did anyone spot the mistake in the parkrun email that said it's week 3? Glad it's not just me that's loosing track of days and months at the moment!

This week 21,542 parkrunners across 20 countries took part in (not) parkrun with an average time of 33:33. 32 of those represented Porty parkrun with 4 (not) parkrun first timers - welcome to Laura Meikle, Grant Bulloch, Alison Elgin & Andrew Bulloch.

Of the returnee (not) parkrunners 7 recorded a new personal best, including myself, which is something i've not managed at (real) parkrun for quite a few years! I only set out for a gentle run on Monday evening after work and headed out of a regular route that's gradually uphill and was into quite a strong headwind that evening. At a point I'd usually turn left to take a different road home I thought I'd take advantage of the gradient and tail wind to pick up a bit of speed on the way back and the result was a few seconds off my previous fastest time. If i'd set off the with the intention of a faster run it might have been even quicker but hindsight is a wonderful thing!

A big shout congratulations to our other PB achievers Elaine Wilson, Fiona Coutts, Stephane Maurage, Jennifer MacKenzie, Elinor Evans and our very own Event Director Ciara Webb!

Saturday remains the most popular day for (not) parkrun with 11 of the 32 Porty runs recorded.

On Friday I paid a visit to Figgate Park for the first time in weeks as lockdown rules meant it has been outside my recommended 5 miles travel for exercise. I walked one lap of the course and the park looked very green and lush. It was lovely to bump into Porty parkrunner Anne Steinberg and her girls while walking along the prom too :)


A full set of (not) parkrun results can be found here. Don't forget, you can do your run or walk anywhere, any time in the week and record any number of 5k times but only your fastest time will show on the public page (all runs show on your personal profile).

Keep running and stay safe!



(not) parkrun week 3 29 June – 5 July 2020

Week 3 of (not) parkrun saw the start of the school holidays for most and a return to typical Scottish summer weather to celebrate. At least the reservoirs will be breathing a sigh of relief along with all those parents who've been homeschooling.

There was also good news for our parkrunning pals in New Zealand who were back to parkrun for the first time on Saturday after lockdown.  It's great to see them all running again but a little bit sad to have a reminder of what we're missing. We'll get there in time though! As part of their return parkruns chose a "locked down" parkrun country to support and Anderson parkrun in Napier (on the East coast of the North Island) chose Scotland.  There's some great videos and photos on their facebook page with more tartan than a tourist shop on the Royal Mile!

This week 37 Porty parkrunners dodged the gale force winds and torrential rain to record their (not) parkrun 5k time.  9 of these were first timers to (not) parkrun so a special welcome to them. From the returnees, 15 recorded a new personal best for (not) parkrun.  Among them were 3 of the 4 members of the Ulferts-Kilpatrick family who sent us this lovely photo from week 16 of their "mum's (not) parkrun", apparently their food bill is shooting up at a proportional rate to the kids! Lockdown training camp also paid off for Elinor Evans and mum Margaret who smashed their sub-40 goal, both recording times well under 39 minutes.....well done ladies!


Saturday remains the most popular day for recording (not) parkrun times with 17 of the 37 runs recorded.  It's the first time i've done mine on a Saturday and I put it off all day due to the dreich weather (and maybe a little too much zoom chat wine on Friday night). Eventually I dragged myself out before dinner and returned to the "village hotel (not) parkrun" which I've not done for a few weeks. I couldn't even tell you how many laps it is as i lose count but using 2 adjacent empty car parks is the best way I've found to do a non-stop run close to home without having to worry about social distancing. Hopefully it's amusing whoever monitors their CCTV too!

The weather looks a bit more favourable for running this week so let's see if we can get a record turn out for (not) Porty parkrun. You can log your 5k time at any point in the week (submit by midnight Sunday) and can even submit more than one time but only your fastest will show in the results list.

A full set of results can be found here: https://www.parkrun.org.uk/portobello/results/notparkrunhistory/

We'd love to see and hear where you've been running so feel free to drop us a line on our facebook page or through the mailbox portobello@parkrun.com.  There were several reports of "porty parkrunner sightings" too this week so grab a social distanced selfie if you bump into each other while you're out n about, we miss your lovely faces, even the sweaty ones!

Stay safe!



(not) parkrun week 2 22-28 June 2020

Week 2 of (not) parkrun saw an increase in participation of over 4000 runners across the globe.  The average finish time from the 23,230 runners was 34:00.

40 Porty parkrunners registered their 5k time this week with 23 first timers taking part. It's probably fair to say that the weather wasn't in our favour for fast times week with extreme heat at one of the week and torrential rain and strong winds over the weekend. It appears that we're not fans of the heat with Saturday (9) and Sunday (10) being the most popular days for runs. Despite the conditions, 12 runners still managed to record a personal best for (not) parkrun......I won't lie, mine might have been somewhat wind assisted!!

Representatives on 5 different running clubs took part from Jog Scotland, Lothian Running Club, Edinburgh Tri, Run Things Run Club and Edinburgh Running Network.

Don't forget, you can log your 5k time at any point in the week (submit by midnight Sunday) and can even submit more than one time but only your fastest will show in the results list.

A full set of results can be found here: https://www.parkrun.org.uk/portobello/results/notparkrunhistory/

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