|The following athletes from Vegan Runners from took part in today’s Milton Keynes parkrun.|
An early start at 9am but only a cycle across town. It was my first of this weekly event and felt very informal with just tape on the ground marking the finish area. Originally I thought the course was entirely around Willen Lake but in fact it took us onto the Grand Union Canal towpath for the first 2K or so but here in this park of MK it is quite wide and firm. We also ran round two sides of the Camphill Trust perimeter that has a veggie cafe but only open Monday – Friday lunch-times.
There were quite a few competitive runners I recognise from other local races but few wore their club vests. I thought I may have a chance of being first over 50 although not sure who were in my age group. On reaching the canal in the first kilometre, I was breathing heavily climbing up to a bridge but not across, turning right along the towpath and down a short distance. As I struggled many runners went past but it was not long before I began to settle but continue to push myself. As we turned away from the canal with the veggie cafe on our right, there was the zig-zagging climb over the steep ridge and down onto Willen Lake at the northern end. We turned back to the southern lake where we completed 3/4 of a circuit to the finish outside the Premier Hotel. Apart from the struggle in the first kilometre I began to pick up my position, passing possibly other runners in my age group. One young guy came sprinting up behind me but did not bother to record his time and position as I think was the case for some other runners. Only just made it under 21 mins not that I knew at the time and one of my slower 5Ks. Well, I do have some excuses! The 2nd woman who just finished ahead immediately congratulated me which I noted. The run also left me with a legacy of a dry throat for the rest of the day.
One local runner who is very much a supporter of these weekly runs was running his 53rd ParkRun and is a V65! He has not had to pay entrance fees, a feature of the series.