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I'm still not doing many miles on my motor bike so not long ago I set off on it to have a look at a couple of parks where there are parkruns. Finsbury Park is very convenient for me, I can jog over to it before the run, but it does have some killer hills on the 5k route, indeed I'd go so far as to say there are no flat bits, and climbing the steep one twice, once on each lap, must add considerably to the time taken. So I set off to look elsewhere for somewhere flatter, with a view to changing my allegiance, ad improving my time.
|Pymmes Park is just over the North Circular and is wonderfully flat - 5km is achieved by running three times around the perimeter. The park itself is very pleasant - it has both a lake and a duck pond. The parkrun also has a number of other attractions - an average entry of about 20 runners, many fewer than at Finsbury Park. Looking at some of the results there seemed to be a chance I might come somewhere near the front of the field. Reconnaissance at Pymmes Park was very positive|
Grovelands Park though suffers from the same problems as Finsbury Park - its hilly, so I don't fancy it for a parkrun. However just inside the gate is a pitch and putt course, set on one of the small slopes, with a stream running through it, it holds some challenge for the occasional golfer. The tees are set back under the trees so each of the holes is a decent length. The third is uphill, over a stream so it borders on being difficult. I paid and took my turn. By showing my Freedom Pass I proved that I qualify for the age related discount, but the round still cost £6.50. This is about the same as at Ally Pally. I think its a bit steep, but then I haven't paid green fees at a golf course for a very long time. I enjoyed the round, but it will only be an occasional treat because of the cost
The following Saturday I set off to go to Pymmes Park (on my motor bike) to take part in the parkrun (on foot). It went reasonably well. I came in 5th overall - much more satisfying than the 40th or 50th I typically achieve at FP. And my time was under 24 minutes - a target I'd aimed for and missed repeatedly at the alpine FP venue. And another thing, the chaps who calculate the results apply something called the WAVA age grading factor, a calculation which recognises arithmetically the effect of getting older, by working out the percentage your time represents against the best possible someone your age might achieve. The results for Pymmes parkrun #18 are here. Each column can be sorted and sorting by age grade suggests that I won, so that's what I do now when I look at it. It improves things a lot, so for instance at FP on 2nd July this little bit of sorting promotes me from 38th to 8th.
I had another little outing to Ikea at Edmonton, to buy some of their Fantastisk table napkins, which are much better than any I can buy in Crouch End. Local supplies tend to be either much poorer quality or a much higher price. On the way I called in at the place where I did my basic motorcycle training. Apparently it will cost me £625 to get the full licence,
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