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Felixstowe parkrun

Despite the queues at the fuel pumps, I did manage to refuel this week, and so I was back to normal tourism as usual. This week I was looking for an "F" event. I did see that a new event at Flegg High was due to start this week, but decided that I would take the opportunity to run Felixstowe while the weather was still not too extreme for a seafront event.

The area

Perhaps best known for its current role as a container port, Felixstowe is a seaside town in the East of England. The town is also a popular seaside resort however, and the town has all of the amenities one would expect from such a resort, from a pier, amusement arcades, convenience food stalls, and beaches.

Felixstowe waterfront from afar

The course

The course was run in reverse this week to celebrate parkrun's 17th birthday, so while we headed northbound to begin, the event usually heads southbound to begin.

Felixstowe Pier from the south

Runners start the run by heading for the first of two out and backs by heading northbound along the promenade from the start area at the pier, until they meet the marshal indicating the turn around point. The route then traces the same route back to the pier, and beyond to the second leg's turnaround point near the beach huts. The second leg concludes with a return to the finish funnel, also located at the midpoint at the pier.

Lots of free parking is available on the residential streets, especially along Sea Road, while many paid car parks are also available. Numerous public toilets are available along the route. Being a seaside resort, a wide range of cafes to suit every palate are also available after the run.

The run

Warming up before the event, the first thing to hit me was the wind today, which was head-on along what would turn out to be the second leg of the run, south of the pier - I knew today's run was going to be a challenge! One good thing about running into a head-wind on an out-and-back route is that it inevitably means a tail-wind for the other half!

Most of the runners didn't realise we would be running in reverse, and the wind didn't help the Run Director's message to turn around spread, but we eventually got there! I paced it steady for the first leg, remembering the challenge a strong headwind can provide from my run at Clacton Beach a few weeks ago. I did try to run as part of a group where I could, but I think most people had decided to ease off rather than push through, and so I felt like I was overtaking people all the way to the second turnaround point.

Once we reached the second turnaround point, I took a few moments to recover slightly, but then turned up the pace and let the wind push me along to a new parkrun PB of 24:14, cutting 3 seconds from my previous PB.

Beach huts beyond the turnaround point on the southern leg

Thank you to all of the volunteers for a great event, even in blustery weather!

Links: Results | Strava

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