Sunday, 13 July 2014

Runstreak Day #224 - the worst ever parkrun

You know when something's not going well?  That was the parkrun I did at Kingsbury Water.

It was atrocious.  Actually, 'it' was lovely.  The volunteers were very welcome.  I was there with a load of Run Mummy Run women who are all fabulous.  And it was a beautiful day.  But *I* was rubbish.

The start was jam-packed... which, for a notorious parkrun-phobic, wasn't good.  I felt claustrophobic and could feel the panic rising.  Then, when it got going, I was hemmed in and panicked more.  I just couldn't run at a pace I felt comfortable with and I ended up going around a load of people, running on the grass, just to get a bit freer.  But, by this point, I could feel myself gasping and my breathing had gone completely to pot.


The first mile seemed to last forever.  It was hot, the route zig zagged and I couldn't get a sense of how far I'd gone at all.  The second mile my pace was all over the place... and by the time I got to 2.5 miles my stomach was flipping, I was wheezing, I was feeling faint... and I walked.

I actually walked.

Unbelievable.  I tried to start running again pretty quickly, but within a couple of hundred metres, I walked.  Again.  And looking at my watch I was trying to convince myself that it was *only* a maximum of five minutes more running to do.  But just shy of three miles and I walked again.  With hardly anything left to run!  And this time, people were passing me... and not a bit of me cared to try to get going again.  One person passed me.  Then another.  Then another.  I saw the '200m to go' sign and forced myself to run again.

And because I'd done such a dismal job of it, I felt no pleasure in having finished.  Only a frustrated relief that it was done.  Of all the parkruns and the couple of races I've done... I've managed to resist the urge to walk / stop.  But not today.

My time was 24:42.  Almost a minute slower than I know I can do.

Sometimes it flows.  Sometimes your head and body fight it.  Today was a fight day.  And the fight won.  For the first time, I let it win.

I'm not letting it win again.

PS  I did other runs today - I'm at the Run Mummy Run Running Retreat (that's hard to say!) and enjoying myself thoroughly... but I kinda wanted to document the parkrun as I've never experienced the whole 'feeling unable to do anything other than walk' thing before!

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.08 mi
Avg Pace:8:02 min/mi
Elevation Gain:38 ft

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