Sunday, September 22, 2013

A parkrun dry run

parkrun in Melbourne will be a little bigger by the end of October with two launches coming up in the next few weeks - Berwick Springs on Oct 12 and Westerfolds Park on Oct 26. Westerfolds Park will be my closest once it gets going, but at the moment my choices are Berwick Springs and Albert Park.

While Albert Park is the closer of the two, traffic is more dense AND I need to pay for parking! So I had my eye on Berwick Springs as a local run (before I found out about Westerfolds Park), and made a note of a few dry runs they had. One was on this weekend, so I headed over to Berwick Springs for my first bit of parkrun action in Melbourne!

parkrun Berwick Springs - 2 laps of the lakes and a final bit at the end!
My GPS recorded 5.1km, but meh. It's parkrun!
The course is fairly flat, with one notable climb along Greaves Road, at the 1km/3.5km mark. The joys of a two lap course - you get to do things twice! There are some other small climbs along the way, and the one between 2 to 3.75 km is not noticed as you start halfway up it and I definitely didn't notice it when coming around for the second lap.

Parking was OK on Saturday (I think there were ~30 runners but the parkrun stopwatch had a fit and reset itself or something, so I don't know for sure), but could be a problem if numbers exceed 50. Although there are likely other suitable spots that I didn't notice on Saturday... There are no cafe or toilet facilities at the park (well, none that I noticed), although Eden Rise shopping centre is about 1.5km away from the start at the corner of Clyde Road and O'Shea Rd (which becomes Greaves Rd on the west of Clyde Road). So I suppose it's all ok if you're well prepared.

My run didn't go so well as I went out far too hard. Now, this isn't too much of a problem on a generally flat course, but it does have me worried for parkrun at Westerfolds Park as I think their hill is worse than St Peters'. And not just because it occurs 1 km later in the run at about 3.5km (out of 5!), it seems to be steeper and longer! I'll share an elevation profile with you if I have a chance to run or ride it before its launch day at the end of October.

I ended up covering the 5km loop-esque course (I couldn't call it a full lollipop!) in 25:53, which is a fair bit behind my Curl Curl PB but I'm sure I can do better with a more controlled pace!

And while I still use the Nike website to get my NikeGPS data into Strava, I've switched from using the Nike+ heatmaps on this blog (and limiting my Strava data to Nike only) as getting back into riding means that I would like to combine the GPS data with the Garmin cadence/speed/heart-rate data I collect on my rides! So I'm now using SportTracks for a variety of reasons - mainly because I can combine the data fairly easily, but there are some other cute little things it does too. :)


  1. Well done!

    I just realised that you can't be too far away from my family - they live pretty close to Westerfolds too - and it's gorgeous.

    Ugh - sound like you could teach me about tracking - I've been hopeless. And two years after getting my garmin, still can't download the data!

    1. I think the hardest bit with using a Garmin is making sure you have the Garmin ANT+ stick which plugs into your computer via USB! I was always misplacing mine until I got a USB hub for all my gadgets to plug into :)