Norwich Parkrun has been on my list of Parkrun's I really wanted to do for a while as I had heard how fast and flat it was.
Having run a PB in the Southend 10K the previous week I knew I was in pretty good shape and fancied my chances of dipping under 21 minutes for the first time.
I did not fancy the 90 minute car journey from Colchester to Norwich, so I managed to persuade my wife we should make a weekend of it in Norwich and I could tick off another Parkrun.
Norwich Parkrun Review
Finding Eaton Park
I was staying in the city centre of Norwich and it was a short 10 minute drive from my hotel to Eaton park. It was really easy to find on the sat nav.
There is no Uber in Norwich but there are plenty of local taxi firms you could use.
It is recommended you make your way via public transport but if you are doing some Parkrun tourism and traveling from afar there is a car park at either end of the park.
I knew it was a busy Parkrun and arrived early at 8:15AM with plenty of spaces. The car park was quite large and considering the number of people that take part there was still spaces at 8:30AM.
The car park was just £2 for 4 hours and only accepts card payments.
Meeting Point For Race Briefing
Once you are at the park, you will realise how small the park is and all you need to do is follow any of the paths that lead to the middle of the park (see course map below) and you will come to the large buildings that circle the bandstand.
You will know if your on the right track, you cant miss the the usual Parkrun signs.
The course is three and half laps on a super flat route! Each lap is essentially the perimeter of the park and after completing the third lap, you continue and about half way round your 4th lap you turn left to finish towards the bandstand.
You run on tarmac paths, which whilst are perfect to give you a super fast time they are quite narrow.
The narrow paths makes the start a bit mad and if you have run at Bushy Parkrun, you will know what to expect as you everyone tears off trying not to get caught up.
Within quarter of a mile the runners had settled and to be fair, whilst there were people running on the grass and in between trees, I stuck to the path and this probably did me a favour as I didn't go off as fast as I normally would and helped me pace my first lap better.
If you are sub 20 minute runner I would get to the front of the start line if you are looking to avoid the runner funnel.
The finish is really easy to spot. It is a really long line of traffic cones funnelling you in to keep people in order of finish positions.
You can see my Strava activity HERE to see elevations and the course in detail.
There are toilets next to the Eaton Park Cafe where the bandstand is. There was a small que towards the start time of 9AM for the ladies but there was little to no que for the gents.
I did not stay for coffee as we planned to have breakfast back at our hotel but the cafe in Eaton Park looked great with lots of options.
The cost of Parkrun is FREE. You just need to register and take your barcode to register your time.
You can find the latest results for Norwich Parkrun HERE
Would I Do It Again?
Yes definitely, it is a great fast flat course, perfect for getting a PB, well organised and the cafe looks great.
Things To Bear In Mind
- It is one the busier Parkruns with roughly 500 runners each week.
- Make sure you have your debit card with you as the parking machine only accepts card payments.
- The park is quite small and is really easy to find the meeting point at the band stand in the morning.
- It is a super fast course and I am probably a little biased as I did run a PB and would say it is one of the fastest Parkrun courses I have done.
Where To Stay
We stayed at The Assembly House hotel in Norwich. I can highly recommend this boutique hotel with only 16 rooms that is walking distance to the city centre and is famous for it's afternoon teas.
The Assembly House is a stones throw away to Norwich's Theatre Royal if you want to catch a show the night before.
I wore the following race day kit:
Top: Soar Running Eco t-shirt
Tights: SAYSKY Combat+ 9 Inch Short Tights
Socks: SHYU race day socks
Trainers: Nike Alphafly 2
Watch: Coros Pace 3
If you have any questions you would like to ask about the Norwich Parkrun, please ask below in the comments.
If you found this blog post useful, please share it using the social media buttons below.