Tuesday, 1 September 2015

What parkrun PBs are made of

So, our running getaway to Pretoria...  It was a rough one, ha!  But one for the books anyway.

Our weekend kicked off with a stopover in the delightful town of Parys in the Free State, on the banks of the Vaal River.  The plan was to sleep over in Parys, do Parys parkrun on Saturday morning, and then merrily continue on our way to Pretoria...  Which is exactly what happened, minus the sleep and the merriness, haha!  (I can laugh about it now...) 
After a long Friday night of sitting up with a poor, sick Missy K, we were all a bit lacklustre on Saturday morning - so much so that we seriously considered cutting our trip short and heading right back home.  We decided to get a professional opinion first, though, and scheduled a doctor's appointment for Miss K at 09:30 - the first available opening.  That left us with just enough time for... you guessed it: Parys parkrun!

One of my favourite things about parkrun in general is the vibe, and for some mind-boggling reason the very same laid-back, friendly, welcoming vibe is present at each and every parkrun venue out there.  And Parys parkrun is no exception - I felt right at home!  The locals welcomed me with open arms and I even got a few "go, Kimberley!" cheers along the way.  parkrun has a way of restoring one's faith in humanity - I love it.

Pre-run briefing on the banks of the Vaal River.  [Photo by Parys parkrun.]

The route is a lovely one right on the banks of the Vaal River - very different from our local Kimberley parkrun route, where there's not a drop of water in sight, ha!  It takes you over some grassy banks and along gravel roads and paths - just the way I like it. 

I finished in 24:20 - a new parkrun PB!  I must have been in a daze or something, because I honestly don't know how I managed to clock a PB on two hours of sleep...  I've been trying to clock a PB for months!  But anyway - I'll take it.

parkrun PB, baby! [Photo by Parys parkrun.]
Six parkrun SA venues down, 57 (and counting) to go...!

Friday, 28 August 2015

It's go-time!

It's finally here!  After months of looking forward to our little running getaway to Pretoria, the time has finally come - yeehaw!  Here's what I'm looking forward to most:

1.  A fun little running stop-over en route

It shouldn't be too hard to guess this one...  Let's just say that it involves the coolest running community on the planet, and a 5 km run on the banks of the Vaal River...  To say that I'm excited is an understatement, ha!  (Can you tell?)

2.  A dress-up fun run with Miss K 

Our tutus are ready, our fairy wands are packed, and our pinker than pink outfits have been coordinated...  Spar Women's Race, are you ready for us??  

3.  Healthy take-out food

If you live in the sticks, like we do, where neon pink viennas and greasy French fries are still regarded as a sensible (and often the only) take-out option, going to a big city with healthy take-out food is huge.  Heavenly, actually.  Smoothies!  Acai bowls!  Freshly pressed juice!  Bliss, I tell you.

Kicking it all off with some yummy padkos.

4.  Fancy-schmancy hotels

Somehow entering the doors of a fancy hotel feels really wrong with this little mini tornado of a young family of mine...  But we're going to anyway.  And we're going to love every, luxurious minute of it.  Let the hotel staff worry about the chocolate fingerprints on the crisp, white linen later, right?     

5.  A change of scenery

I'm so in need of a break.  Our last getaway was in March, and since then it's been go, go, go, so I'm really looking forward to just letting my hair down and hanging out with the crew.  Nothing sounds better to me right now than strolling around in flip-flops with nowhere particular to go...  I.  Can't.  Wait.       

So, if you'll excuse me, we have a car to pack...  See you on the other side!

Monday, 24 August 2015

A New Chapter

It feels like only yesterday that Miss K and I did our first stroller run together...  I remember that day so well: It was early winter, K was all snuggled up in her fluffy white suit with the bunny ears, and my heart felt alive with the joy of running outside with my little one.  Things must not have looked so peaceful and serene from the outside, though, because after completing our umpteenth lap of the shortish paved path through the botanical gardens, one of the gardeners came up to us and asked if we were trying to find the exit but couldn't, ha!  

Our first stroller run, more than three years ago.

Anyway, you already know that our stroller running heydays are over, but this weekend we started a brand new chapter: That fluffy little white bunny that I spent hours and hours running with is now officially a cycling chick!

Of course her pink purse filled with Stickeez couldn't stay behind ;).

This weekend, totally out of the blue, and with no cuing from us, K asked if she could bring her bike on our evening walk.  Of course we took the double stroller along just in case she got tired and wanted to hop in, but she wanted nothing of the sort: She rode the entire 2-ish kays by herself and couldn't be happier!

I, on the other hand (and to Will's great amusement), was a nervous wreck, scurrying around like a mother hen with ten chicks.  "Stay next to the pavement, Dear!".  "Be careful, here comes a car!".  "Not so fast, Honey!".  She quite obviously inherited her dad's cycling genes and not mine, simply replying "yes, Mommy" every time and then continuing to ramp off the sidewalk and fly over rocks and sticks with the greatest of ease and the biggest smile on her face.  This girl.   

Brother Bear enjoys our expeditions just as much, but thankfully still prefers Seat No. 4 of the red wagon after a kay or so of exploring and running around.  I can only imagine the degree of ramping and flying over rocks that will take place once this little dude gets on a bike...!

Loving it!