- Average Number of Runners: 171.3
- Average run Time: 28′ 58″
- Average Number of Runs/Runner: 4.5
- Biggest Attendance: 413
- Female Record: 18′ 11″
- Male Record: 15′ 52″
The plan for today was to travel to Swords to do the River Valley Parkrun. I’m trying to cross off the furthest away ones first. BUT Ciara upset my plans somewhat, storm Ciara that is, not one of my two beautiful nieces! Well to be fair to the storm, it didn’t affect conditions for running this morning at all, in fact it was one of the nicest Saturday mornings in a long time. No, it was the councils who, in the name of health and safety, decided last night that in case it might get breezy, they wouldn’t turn up and open the gates to a number of council parks this morning. Marley and Cabinteely were two local runs that were cancelled. Unsure what runs were on or off, I decided to stay local. Bushy Parkrun got promoted to the number 3 spot. The trip on the nifty 50 was a mere hop, compared to me previous journeys but unlike those two which ventured into areas I was not very familiar with, I managed to end up in the wrong spot in an area I thought I knew. Familiarity makes you cocky and cocky folk sooner or later get a deserved boot in the backside. With just 10 min to go, I realised I was at the wrong side of the park altogether. 10 very sweaty minutes later I arrived at the start line looking more like a finisher then a starter.
As it turned out, I need not have rushed. There was going to be a delay to the start and the reason wasn’t hard to see. With Marley and Cabinteely closing, the world and is jogging mother descended on poor Bushy Park. At the best of times this course is a tad on the narrow side, but with the numbers that turned up today. Cillian, the friendly ever patient organiser was doing his best to manage the ever swelling crowd. Because the huge crowd was now so far over the start line, they had to try and get the runners to move back up the narrow path. Back we went, further and further. Then when you thought, surly we are all behind the start line, a voice from somewhere up the front would shout out, just another 50 m – go back just another 50 meters. I didn’t mind as finishing time was not an issue for me, but some of my fellow local Park-runners were getting a tad anxious. I heard some say “It’s all these Marley Migrants”. Wow, I thought, I’m a migrant – I better keep on the move before they start putting us into temporary accommodation! I’ve seen those tents along the Dodder – I wonder are they displaced runners from another time!!
Eventually we were off. Like some constipated snake, the wooded path struggled to get this large mass of runners out (charming image!!). Unlike chipped races, were your time starts when you cross the start line, with Parkruns, everyone’s time starts together, regardless of where you begin from. So I already clocked up time and I hadn’t even started. It turned out to be a relaxed run in the end. Time was out the window so the only thing to do was finish and enjoy the run. I found the course hilly so my time would have sucked any way! It involved a straight run of just over a kilometre to the open park, two laps and back the same path.
I always love the few minutes after a Parkrun. Everyone is pleased that they did it, they are congratulating each other – everybody is treated as a winner – Imagine if life was always like this – I’ll just have to keep Park running I suppose. Thanks to all those who have sent on encouraging messages – Remember it’s all about the true athletes of Monaghan Special Olympics – Cheers and we’ll chat again after Run #4.