So March 28th was supposed to be a special parkrun Saturday for me. Not only was I going to be volunteering again, clapping and cheering as hundreds of lovely parkrunners whizzed and walked past me, but there would also have been cake. Lots of cake. Lemon drizzle for Louisa Langton, carrot cake for Robert Hackford and another lemon drizzle for Kirsty Parnaby. And maybe a few to spare too. "Why so much cake?" I hear you cry. Well, it would also have been my 250th parkrun.
So a time for reflection in these troubles and uncertain times. I ran my first parkrun on 1st December 2012. Some park runners weren't even born then! It was Event no 9 ar Rushcliffe and I ran a time of 28:45. I came 40th. If I ran the same time at the last Rushcliffe parkrun I would have been 177th. Or to look at it another way to be home in 40th position I would have had to run a time of 22:37. Not a chance!!!
This morning I ran my socially distanced 5k in a time of 29:27. I came home to be told by my son that that was rubbish. "but you've been running for years and you are not getting any better" is his argument. (PB 25:07 on 23/1/16 actually, although no idea how I managed that!) So I told him he is missing the point. I dont run at parkrun for any other reason that the pure enjoyment of putting one foot in front of another, somewhat faster than walking pace, and chatting my way round catching up with the friends I have made over the years. To me it will never be about beating last weeks time. That is fine for others but I am happy to just turn up and get round.
And so as we adjust to the changes in our lives over the new few months, I am grateful that I can still run from home, moving to the other side of the street if someone is coming the other way, offering a wave or smile of togetherness.
Life for all of us is on pause. And I can wait for that amazing green Tshirt with 250 on it. In the meantime I might make my own T shirt out of a cushion cover.......keep well ....keep safe xxx