Back to my parkrun roots

Two men in fluorescent jackets in a parkrun picture frame at Eastleigh parkrun.

I’ve finally finished planning my schedule until the end of June – hopefully, I’ll get to visit 10 ‘new-to-me’ parkruns in that time as well as a few more letters on my parkrun alphabet. However, I also want to get back to my parkrun roots.

Southampton parkrun

After running at Upton House parkrun, it was nice to be back at Southampton. I started my run with fellow RDs Jill and Kate. Jill was pacing 30 minutes and Kate and I wanted to stick with her for as long as possible. Unfortunately, it wasn’t very long.

If you’ve never been to Southampton parkrun, it’s certainly an experience. It’s an exceptionally busy parkrun and if you start behind too many runners who are slower than you, it cna be very hard to pick up th pace. I was absolutelt amazed that when we rounded the first corner, someone [who was taking part in parkrun] was walking in teh middle of teh path with a tiny baby in a pram. People are allowed to start wherever they want, but when M was that small, I definitely felt it was in her interest to start at the back.

I really enjoyed having a social run with Kate and in the end, my 31:17 didn’t seem so bad for a run that started very slowly.

Tamsyn's result from Southampton parkrun #348: 31:37.

Eastleigh parkrun – my parkrun roots

I had wanted to return to my parkrun rootsfor a long time. Eastleigh parkrun is where my parkrun journey began back in 2010. Since then, the event has changed quite a bit. Originally, it was held at Lakeside Park, then it moved to Wide Lane and after a brief hiatus it moved to Fleming Park where the course has been tweaked a bit over th years.

I last ran at Eastleigh parkrun in 2015, when I achieved a time of 33:46. Could I beat that?

We arrived at 8:40 and I was pleasantly surprised to find that there were still plenty of empty spaces in the car park adjacent to the start. I gottheh buggy out of the car whilst Stu wrangled with M.

As soon as we left teh car park, we bumped into Eastleigh stalwart Dave Clothier. Dave has been a key part of the team assisting with set up for as long as I can remember.

The start of the event is by the Pavilion on the Park cafe. It’s a great location for a pre-run briefing as there is a grassy mound where the Run Director can stand and be seen by all of the runners.

How was my run?

I got ahead of Stu who was psuhing M as the start was a little bit bumpy, however it didn’t take them long to cath up. M absolutely loved being able to see me running. I may not be fit right now, but I’d love to think that M is being inspired.

It wasn’t long before M passed me, but I was determined to enjoy myself and keep going.

I was also enjoying seeing many people who I haven’t seen for a while – parkrun legend, Ron T; the Hazlitts; Alison M; Louise D; George H and Karen.

Course map of Eastleigh parkrun.

Eastleigh is a three lap course that zig zags around, so it’s possible to see other runners. I could see Stu and M, but I think I was too far away for M to notice me. Apparently, M kept telling Stu to “Catch Mummy, catch Mummy!” even though I was behind them!

Finally I crossed the line. I felt exhausted!

Tamsyn's result from Eastleigh parkrun #447 on 2nd March 2019: 33:37.

I managed to beat the time that I did last time I ran here (although I’m a long way off my PB of 25:08). It would definitely take a drier day (as well as a huge improvement in my fitness) to beat that!

What have I been watching recently?

I really liked this video about a group of 15 runners who wanted to beat Andy Baddeley’s parkrun record of 13:48.

Breaking the parkrun WORLD RECORD of 13.48
Interpretive spinning
I rarely go to the cinema these days, but I’d love to see this film.
I think upcycling wetsuits is a great idea, although it’s a shame that the pieces can’t be reused to make more wetsuits

What have I been reading recently?

What have I been listening to?

I’ve also been listening to Athletes Unfiltered, the new podcast from Strava. It’s a well-paced programme with a good mix of interviewees.

How’s your week been?

I'd love to hear your thoughts...

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