History Repeating? The 100th Springburn parkrun

Disclaimer: may contain small elements of smugness

http://www.facebook.com/markgallmac for behind the scenes footage. Or something.

This week saw the next round of the Motherwell AC club championships and following on from the previous 10k and 10 miler it was to be a 5k. Continuing our touring approach it was to be the Springburn parkrun for the first time and fittingly on their 100th parkrun celebrations. But too much too soon. How’s my training been going? Since the Tom Scott I’ve trained when possible, work has a habit of getting in the way, but had some really good speed sessions back in the legs, the 8 x 800m and pyramid sessions being particularly gruelling but a much needed step. Thursday’s run and coach john told us it was to be the Rollercoaster run. Regular readers will know that when I do the Rollercoaster on a Thursday and parkrun on the Saturday I tend to have a good parkrun. (https://markgallmac.wordpress.com/2015/07/12/an-unexpected-groovy-treat/) Last time  I did Victoria parkrun and ran a still unbeaten PB of 18.23. My fastest this season has been 19.02 at the National relays, so wasn’t going to get near that, but my hope was to creep back under 19. Like the one from last year I took the rollercoaster section hard then followed someone I shouldn’t the last section, last time Chris, this time Craig Mackenzie, doing the last k in 3.44 in what was supposed to be easy/steady (I will never learn). History Repeating.  Anyway came to Saturday and I was getting a lift in the PB mobile with The legend in lycra Jim White and MAC’s own Del Boy, Kevin Durnian, both of whom are PBing left, right and centre. To be fair to the legend he knows when I am wanting a hard run I psyche myself up by listening to Teenage Fanclub’s “Is this Music?” and he brought the cd with him. Quality.

Adrenalin pumping despite trying to explain who they were to Del boy. “The songs a Bellsyhill boy then?”. Hard work, man. If it’s not the GBX he doesn’t want to know. Through we went not knowing what to expect. Heard there be hills. Many of them. Not Tollcross, but not Strathclyde. Got through, met some more of the squad and went a wee jog round with one of the many helpful people we met there. It didn’t seem as bad as feared. Undulating yes. Long inclines yes but nothing too steep. 2 1/2 Laps to do. Briefing over, to be honest conditions were perfect.


The Dicko shades were on, even though Scott was there and wearing his, and we were off. 



Downhill stretch to start with and I was in danger of getting carried away so reeled myself in. Just as well as round corner and then it’s up a section. The front group were pulling away, and as I suspected I was in a group behind along with Marcus and Scott, both who have been faster than me over 5k this season, with the legend in lycra close behind. Up round the house at the top of the climb and Marcus and Scott pulled ahead. 1st k in 3.44. It was a case of hanging in there and as we went round that lap and the start of the next we were having shots each at leading the group, each of us running hard. The Hughes duo of coach John and Clare appeared to be multiplying as they were appearing everywhere over the course with great encouragement which really helped. But I didn’t see them on my third k and ooooft, my third k was a stinker, from leading the group to being off the back as my 2nd k of 3.45 slipped to a 4 minute k. No PB. No History Repeating. Not even a sub 19 the way it was going. The head playing games. Already deciding on my excuses. But somehow turned it off and went past Scott and up onto Marcus shoulder.Sod the time it was a race, and an enjoyable one. Shook myself out of my stupor and at 1 1/2 k to go was ahead of Scott and neck and neck with Marcus. A fella from Bellahouston maybe 50 – 100 metres ahead. Target locked, and trigger pulled. If the legs went then so what? The MAC champs not a priority, not even doing the next race. Let’s wind it up. Up the hill beside the football parks and I was after the Bella runner and closing. About a k to go. Coach John shouting encouragement. 1 hill to go. Legs heavy but it wasn’t going to beat me. Passed the Bella runner, who I later found out was Iain Morrison, a VERY handy runner who I don’t think I have ever been close to before. Couldn’t hear Marcus behind me but wasn’t for looking. Ran hard without sprinting, up the hill, along the straight and round the corner with the sprint to the finish. Encouragement from Clare, John shouting to me I was on for a great time, and home. 


Looked at the watch and , another little bit of History Repeating a time of 18.23. You couldn’t make it up! Equalled my PB after a similar build up. My last 2k was decently fast then which was pleasing. Had I known could I have found a sneaky second in the last sprint? Maybe. But I was delighted. Back where I was just before my injury last year. 9th place and second v45, and third from MAC. Not bad at all.


Up front Cammy had finished second and in a repeat of the Tom Scott, despite smashing his PB he finished tantalisingly close to a major barrier in 17.00. Oooft. Nick was 7th, my Cambuslang friend Iain Littler one ahead of me in 8th. Behind me Marcus had got yet another PB in 18.39, the legend in lycra and Dicko had a sprint battle with Dicko shading it, but Jim smashing his PB for his first sub 20 in 19.21. Delboy Durnian and Tommy Touchy Toes also had a sprint finish with Kev shading it, but again both smashing their PBs. Great day all round for team MAC with another load of PBs, too many to mention.

Over for juice and cake. I love cake. I may have told you. Recognised a girl I used to go to Uni with and said hello. The resultant look was blank. I think I would be a master criminal as no-one ever remembers me πŸ™‚ Group photo time and off we went.


Didn’t expect to get back to my fastest from last year to be honest, but I’m there and it is only April. Can I dare to dream of that elusive #projectsub18 again? Nah not for now. I’m enjoying this running and racing without expectation. On days like this when the sun is shining and you feel good, that’s enough for me.

Thanks to all the volunteers and helpers at Springburn parkrun. A challenging but interesting route. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I will be back. Give it a wee go if you haven’t already. Thanks to Clare Hughes, David Dinnie and Springburn parkrun for the pics. And of course thank you to the Propellerheads and Miss Shirley Bassey for the title of this blog. Enjoy the tune.

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