Abingdon parkrun and a nerdy day trip

Anyone who follows Ben Goldacre (@bengoldacre) on Twitter will know that there is a new website where people can post details of their favourite nerdy day trips.

Which is excellent news for me.  For now, when I travel ridiculous distances to check out a parkrun, I can visit something interesting at the same time, to help justify the trip.  Not, you understand, that I need an additional reason.  My addiction is all the excuse required.

Abingdon parkrun is flat and picturesque and starts off alongside a river.  If time is important to you then make sure you start quickly, because the second part of the course is single-file.  Overall, it’s definitely a trail run although unusally one section is run along a real road.  With real cars.

As ever, the volunteers are friendly and efficient and one was kind enough to recommend a patisserie to me.  I checked it out (after the post-run coffee) and, well, nom nom nom.  It’s probably just as well that Abingdon isn’t my local run, because I would find Patisserie Pascal very hard to resist.

One of the photographers was a parkrunner that I’d chatted to after the Southwick Country parkrun.  It was really rather lovely running round and getting cheered on by name.  Lovely and unusual, given my usual anonimity.

At coffee afterwards, we were talking about the ways that parkrun encourages runners.  For the loyal, there are the annual points competition and the monthly prizes.  For the fast, there are the tables of winners and age-grade wonders.  For the dedicated, there are the t-shirts and for the nomadic there is the table of doom.

But, as we are told week-in and week-out, parkrun relies on its volunteers.  Occasional volunteers get a carrot in the form of maximum points up to three times per year.  But the core team of volunteers at each parkrun, who volunteer a lot more than three times each year, seem to miss out.  Maybe there’s one more table for the summary page:  most prolific volunteers.

As for the nerdy day trip, I went to see the Wittenham Clumps.  Even on a rainy day, they offer stunning views of Oxfordshire.  I imagine that on a clear summer day, they are spectacular.

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About abradypus

A Bradypus or Sloth am I, I live a life of ease, contented not to do or die but idle as I please; ... [Michael Flanders and Donald Swann]
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12 Responses to Abingdon parkrun and a nerdy day trip

  1. fortnightflo says:

    I am amazed and how far and wide you are going! And another sub 30 min I notice too – well done!

  2. Absolutely agree about the volunteer table idea.

  3. plustenner says:

    how many different parkruns is that now? well done!!

  4. Sean Price says:

    Great to hear more about your travels and hear hear on the volunteer table

  5. zoecakes says:

    Never mind the view, the name ‘Wittenham Clumps’ is fab enough in itself!! 🙂

  6. Kieron C says:

    I love that almost everyone else at the top of that list has run at least 80 odd parkruns, and there’s you with 36 parkruns at 35 locations! It’s a bit of a jump to 9th spot – are you up to it!?!

  7. Rachel B says:

    Impressed as always at your roaming stamina! Sooner or later must get you to IOW!
    Nerdy day trips sounds interesting. Was going to say don’t tell OH but might be useful in getting to new races myself!

  8. jensruns2011 says:

    Sounds like a nice parkrun, one worth trying perhaps. Can’t quite believe all the different ones you’ve tried and that you’re still going strong, well done! 🙂

  9. If you’re ever in the Cheshire / Manchester area the Bramhall parkrun is well worth a visit. It’s well attended, very well organised with a lot of support from the crowd. It stays within the park boundaries and with a couple of uphills and muddy sections and a few Canada Geese along the way it’s always entertaining!

  10. ewoodeson says:

    This one would have been my local run a few weeks ago – sounds like you had a nice day, and Wittenham Clumps is cool – not at all nerdy!
    If you ever find a parkrun in Malaysia….

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