It was Friday the seventeenth of February and I was just going to bed but I checked the weather forecast before retiring and at parkrun time, 9:30 am in Scotland, strong winds and heavy rain were predicted. I’m training for the inaugural Stirling Marathon and my schedule had ‘6 miles easy’ for Saturday. So I decided to leave my 209th parkrun, and my 150th at Pollok, for a future date, turned on BBC 4 and opened another bottle of wine. The Boss and the vin rouge kept me company until the wee sma’ hours. My plan was to catch up on my beauty sleep in the morning and miss the worst of the weather too. Of course, like the all the best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men, my plan went a-gley and I woke up at the usual time. No matter how hard I tried to procrastinate, I was still ready to go running at 9:00 am. With the weather being dry and a balmy 10C, I had no excuse for not using the parkrun as part of my training run. No excuse apart from a hangover that is.
It was good to hear the Race Director, Henry Merryweather, giving Stuart McBeath a mention for chalking up his 100th parkrun and I applauded the occasion along with others as we approached the Start Time.
With my faithful hound, Jack harnessed to me we set off at a steady pace. Not too fast but not t
oo slow, I was on target to complete the 5k in a time of 22mins, a little bit under if I pushed myself in the last kilometre, maybe even a season’s best of 21:54 or less. But Jack had other plans and, with 3.5k under our belts, he pulled over for a pit stop. With good grace, I stood and watched runner after runner pass by as I bagged and binned the reason for our delay.
I ditched my ‘easy run’ plan and set off trying now to catch as many runners as possible. Yes, I was feeling rough but I was also benefiting from my training and was feeling fit and fast sprinting past others during that last 1500 meters. My Garmin and Strava showed that I ran the final kilometre in a new Personal Record (PR) of 3:37 and the final 300m in a PR of 57 seconds. It would be great to run that fast more consistently. I crossed the line in a time of 22:05 and placed 60th overall, out of a field of 450.
After my tokens were scanned, I took a couple of minutes to rest and had a catch up with Elizabeth Patterson before I and Jack set off to complete the remainder of our ‘easy’ run before heading home for a shower and some well-deserved food. There would be no cake or celebrations to mark the milestone but a few Well done Ians was more than enough for me. I’ve only another 41 outings to qualify for my 250th t-shirt.
Many thanks to all the marshals, and other volunteers, who gave up their time so that we could have our Saturday morning run.
Full results here