Monday, 13 February 2012

New Contributor: David Hamilton

My name is David Hamilton
I have done 24 parkruns at Edinburgh.
I have volunteered 4 times
my parkrun barcode number is A159019.

What’s the attraction of parkrun? I can only answer personally. I think its the challenge of pitting yourself against the clock, striving to improve your performance. Although I’m 55 and relatively slow I’m a very competitive person.
I started doing the Edinburgh parkrun in June 2011 and since September I’ve been running most weeks. We have a beautiful flat course along the tarmacadamed foreshore at Cramond round a loop and back the way we came to finish opposite the start. The views across the water to Fife are beautiful – if you spare the time and energy to appreciate them when you’re flat out. The run back is into the prevailing wind and the lack of shelter poses a big problem on windy days.
I set my personal best on 1 October 2011 and since I’d been trying everything I knew to improve it – without success until last Saturday. I’m not a runner and used to think there was nothing to running but I’ve come to appreciate that are a huge number of factors which affect your performance - stride, pace action, breathing, weight, diet, preparation to mention just a few. Conditions vary too as we discovered in November – strong winds, ice, snow all wreaked havoc with my times.
So to last Saturday. Running conditions were perfect. My preparation had been good throughout the week and I started telling myself that I could improve my time. I got a watch for Christmas which has been a big help – telling me my time for each kilometre. During the week I worked out the time I needed to be at for each stage. My struggle is always between the 1 and 4km stage so I worked out the time I needed to be at the 4km marker. On the day I reached it 6 seconds ahead of target so knew that it was in the bag if I could keep going. My body was rebelling but I forced my legs on. The glorious sight of the trees that herald the start of the final stretch spurred me on. I pushed on to the finish line stretching my legs as much as I physically could. What a feeling when I glanced at the watch to see a new personal best – by 11 seconds. That’s what parkrun means to me!
Posted on behalf of David Hamilton.

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