Lowestoft Parkrun has been on my radar for a while now, as several of my friends have been posting photographs and stats from their runs on their social media of late. So last night my phone pings whilst I’m polishing off a G&T and watching a cheesy movie – my friend Lucy had shared a post from Parkrun saying they needed a photographer at short notice. I think to myself “why not?!” and promptly volunteer my services…10 minutes later and we see the first torrential rain for around 3 months of scorching summer. Oh dear.
Tumbling out of bed at 6am – first things first – check the weather – cloudy but dry…phew! Coffee, toast, shower, final kit-check, load up and I’m off to the beach. Arriving at the Claremont Pier, I see its a really inclusive event – there are runners of all ages, gender, ability and species (there were several canine participants!) there already raring to go. The field make their way to the starting line at the South Pier and begin their run along the seafront. The serious athletes surge forward, followed by people just getting fit and social runners. Not being the most athletic of people, I am impressed by the whole field and their enthusiasm…most seem to be enjoying it…mad, I say!
As the runners come round for the closing part of the course the sky blackened and thunder rumbled close by. Spectators and also the faster runners who have finished, cheer on and support those bringing up the rear as they gamely ran by. As the final groups begin crossing the finish line, the clouds burst and rain pours down in sheets, some people scatter, looking for shelter while others relish the cooling rains. The final participant walking the course was cheered as she finished with her grandson, a testament to the family atmosphere and inclusiveness of this event. If you fancy getting fit or are already into running, I’d highly remained you give them a look. One of the runners suggested I ran the course taking photos next time…nice idea, but I think I’ll need quite a bit more practice before trying anything like that.