I took part in this event for the first time in 2019 and thoroughly enjoyed it.
When I read that it was making a return post-pandemic, I didn’t hesitate to sign up. East Peckham is only 20minutes from home, in the direction of my work office, and Uaffiliated entry was just £21.08.
So on Sunday 1st August, I drove and parked in East Peckham playing fields. Parking was on the side of the actual field, and there were marshals guiding the parking. My race number and event information didn’t turn up in the post, so I headed over to the registration desk and said my name in exchange for a spare running number (with embedded timing chip) and safety pins – very quick and easy!
Runners were summoned to the start line with a few minutes to go. There was a buzzing atmosphere – it felt so good to be back at running events, after 18months of Coronavirus taking over! I positioned myself in the middle of the crowd, and we all set off. The route was scenic and flat throughout the back roads of the village, past beautiful Oast Houses and farms.
I was wearing a Nike vest over Primark sports bra, Nike Pro cropped leggings and headband, and Brooks Launch 7 trainers, and a cheap eBay phone-holder on my arm, which also held a Torq energy gel – my favourite! (This came in handy for a little boost around the 7K mark.) I was comfortable and enjoyed the run, feeling like I was running well. Very rarely for me, I had my AirPods in my ears but didn’t turn the music on once. It made a nice change!
The weather was overcast – not cold, not hot. Great running conditions! There was one water station at around 4K, which came in handy.
The finish chute was lined with supporters and had a great vibe. I was handed a medal and directed towards a table with water and snacks. Runners congregated at the finish line chatting and chilling; and I slowly walked back to my car.
However, like last year, I encountered an issue trying to leave – the entrance to the playing field is narrow, one-way, and was accommodating runners coming back into the field to finish, along with cars. I have a Land Rover and last year I caused a runner to have to stop and wait as I had already committed to driving out of the field, on instruction from a marshal who was at the gate trying to control the flow. I felt really bad and guilty at the time and said that perhaps I’ll park outside the field and walk in if I do the event in future. But, I forgot! This time around was much the same, and actually runners weren’t allowed to move their cars until virtually all runners were through, so I ended up sitting in my car for 15mins.
But nevertheless, I would definitely take part in the East Peckham 10K again, and would recommend this event to others, too 🙂