Rose turned five last month. We took a break from junior parkrun as she wasn’t enjoying it, but the day after her birthday, she turned to me and said she wanted to go back and try again because “I’m more grown up now, Mummy, now I’m five.” As the weather was slightly hit and miss, we decided to visit Worksop College junior parkrun, which has recently started in the grounds of Worksop College. This parkrun is made up of two laps of a playing field, and is mostly flat with an incline towards the finish. It is run entirely on grass.
We turned up bright and early for week two, where we bumped into my friend Laura, who is also one of the Run Directors. Her daughter was running her first ever official junior parkrun. We got talking and then it was time for warm up, where Rose did her usual action of scowling and not joining in. However, she grinned when the start was announced and she took my hand as we walked to the start line.
I was surprised by the numbers attending, with 82 finishers at week 2, which is brilliant. We lined up to start and we were soon off, Rose yelling “Dadddddddddddddddddddddddddy” when she saw Jimmy’s hat.
For me, this was also the perfect opportunity to test my ankle, knowing that Rose has two speeds; breakneck and walking. She got off to a great start though and we enjoyed playing I Spy as we run around the edge of the rugby pitch. We were lapped near the end of the first lap by the super speedy front-runners and we soon made the turn for lap two.
I had no idea of the pace we were going, but I felt confident that Rose was on for a great PB. I encouraged her to keep moving forward and she started singing Baby Shark as we went. Soon she stopped though, complaining that she was too hot and we ditched one of her layers.
Two minutes later, we stopped again so she could ditch another layer. Although it was a chilly day, she’d chosen to wear three layers, not believing us when we said that she’d soon warm up. Arms loaded with her discarded clothing, she walked along for a bit, before grabbing my hand so we could have a race.
The incline up to the finish is short, but slightly steep and I slowed to a walk expecting Rose to walk up it. She sighed, “that looks steep, Mummy.” I explained to her we just had to take some big steps and then we’d be up on the flat and could finish. I stopped to walk, but no such luck. She grabbed my arm and decided to go tearing up it, pulling me after her. “Come on, Mummy.” With the finish in sight, she carried on running and went all the way over the line and into the finishing funnel in an official time of 17:33, a PB of over 30 seconds.
I’m over the moon that Rose has had such a lovely return to parkrun. She’s begging to go back to Newark again soon so she can “run really fast, Mummy!” For me, it was also reassuring that my ankle held up and I even went and ran a mile on my own after. Hooray! Thanks for a lovely morning, Worksop College junior parkrun!