The golden rule of parkrun is …

fullsizerender-2… don’t forget your barcode. So what couldn’t I find this morning? Yup, my bleedin’ barcode!

After getting myself all psyched up to go, I went to get changed only to come back downstairs to see my laptop had decided to pick that particular moment to download and install lots of lovely Windows 10 updates.

I knew I had the barcode stored on it so it was only a matter of waiting for the thing to restart itself and I’d be able to print it off. Right?


This was mega-update time, it required several restarts, my blood type, inside leg measurements, resting heart rate, BMI, my neighbours pets names and so on (ok, I’m exaggerating a bit!) but it was taking ages.

I quickly realised there was no chance of it being done and me getting my barcode printed in time to get off to the Ecos Centre in time for the run.

Surely there must be some spares sitting in and around my desk somewhere? No worries, I thought, I’ll just grab one of them ……. except I couldn’t find one. I started to recall that the last lot had got wet so I’d binned them. After all, I could just download a new set from the site and print them when needed. Ha! Yes. Well. That worked, didn’t it?

But, I was dressed for running so why waste it? So out I went, I’ll do the parkrun 5k distance and sure won’t all be well with the world?

What a load of unadultered utter tripe. It was a bloody awful run. Right from the start. My legs just don’t want to play ball. Perhaps it was a combination of my sprints yesterday, then working in the garden followed by a few hours walking around Belfast in the evening.

I’d woken up exhausted and sore, so the signs were clearly there. I was just so tired. Realising quite quickly this wasn’t going well I had to make the decision to give up or plough on.

I ploughed on, so I suppose I have that to my credit – but that’s about the only plus point.

Did I win the mental battle? I don’t know. I certainly lost the physical battle but I didn’t give up. I might have been swearing at myself. I might have been telling myself all sorts, questioning why I’d ever decided to start this running lark in the first place. Or I could be questioning why I’ve decided to keep on at it.

I mean, I’ve done the London Marathon. Surely I can retire gracefully? No-one could ever criticise me for doing that. So why can’t I? What is it within me that keeps pushing on when I know I’m rubbish at it?

And what did I do when I came home? Instead of going to bed, feeling sorry for myself and vowing to give up I only went and paid my registration fee for the London Winter Run in February. Why? Why? Why?

That means organised events in October, February, March, April and May. Do I enjoy punishing myself like this? Maybe I’m looking for something. Some sort of purpose or point in me doing this?

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