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Royal Parks Half 2023

Firstly, a big well done and you're amazing to everyone who took the Q from QPH to heart and ran the Royal Parks Half.

Report Summary:

• Weather: sunny with a high of 25℃; light winds; very low visibility

• Number of people: too many

• Medal material: wood

Because everything is about me, I will give you a run report through my eyes… The runs started in an un-flushing portaloo… let’s leave that there. We waited in a crowd with irritating levels of enthusiasm for a Sunday morning, along with the ‘DJs’, who had energy levels like they had been raving all night.

An hour later, we were finally off… …to wait for half an hour in a pen and then walk one kilometre to the start. My feet already hurt. And then we were really off! Less human traffic than expected. Of course, we started off far too fast (what’s the point of doing your first half-marathon if you don’t?). We ran through Hyde Park and then out of it and then into Regents Park (probably?) and then back into Hyde Park and then I stopped concentrating and instead thought of four-syllable words beginning with D.

As we got slower, the noise got louder - there was one woman just screaming at regular intervals, not forming any words. I later found out that there were ‘plants’ paid by un-named sponsors to scream at every mile. If I got paid to scream, I could make some good dosh every day after work. Our speed followed a smooth logarithmic line graph, i.e. as the distance increased, the speed became slower and slower. I hope no maths teachers call me out.

Despite Becky claiming she was going to die multiple times, she didn’t and we managed to finish some between 2:24 and 2:27. I have genuinely forgotten. Well done Becky, who didn’t know what running was a couple of years ago. And well done me, who didn’t pick an argument the whole way.

The only QPH members I know who also ran it were Rob Bailie and Dustin Daniel. The latter got a half marathon record. What impressed me about the event most? There was hand sanitiser in the portaloos. I thought the era of hand hygiene had long departed. I also though that the route was planned out very well. They must have very avid topography enthusiasts. Or a clever computer. What didn’t impress me? The cyclists.

While I am a very optimistic person, I thought it important to balance out my native optimism with a dash of cynicism. Returning to my natural jollity, I had a very nice day overall. Yes, lots (didn’t go to plan) everything was perfect, and I can’t wait to do my next half in a few years’ time!!!

My favourite thing about the event happened before it started. I received so many donations from so many people, many of whom had barely spoken to me. We raised well over £800, with our original target being only £350.

Thank you for your unconditional kindness, it really made me warm inside and much faith in humanity was restored ♥


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