Well folks, here’s my first shot at a KWP run report for all you lovely people…go easy on me!
This white rabbit can promise that you’ll learn some quickly-to-be-forgotten facts, some of you will think “blimey”, some of you will smile, others might grimace, some of you will definitely do a Michael Caine impression, but hopefully you’ll all finish with that warm fluffy parkrun feeling in your belly ready for tomorrow. (If you’re wondering about the ‘white rabbit’ reference, I’m late, I’m late, I’m very very late …in submitting this report – as I was for my volunteering role last week – in fact I’m late for most things!)
If numbers are your thing…
As we find ourselves on the eve of the next parkrun, it is worth noting that 448 of us ran, jogged or walked parkrun last Saturday, 12th May. My extensive (cough) research for this report led me to discover that parkrun itself is now established in 530 locations. With the numbers at KWP gradually getting ever closer to 500, it is surely only a matter of time before KWP catches up and passes the number of locations that parkrun itself is held at.
Just imagine, when that time comes, you could each disappear and run one location each simultaneously…and a few of us crafty buggers could stay behind and achieve our best finishing position ever at KWP!!
Are any of you bold enough to predict when you think the 500 point will be reached?
Anyway, onto personal bests…and well done two fat ladies….no, no, before you spit your tea / coffee / beer / prosecco (delete as appropriate) out while you’re reading this…you don’t understand, I’m just letting you know the number of PB’s that were achieved last Saturday!
I’ll start again. Well done 88 of you that got PB’s last week.
Yes, eighty-eight. Staggering isn’t it?
Hopefully, my bingo lingo isn’t considered to be too edgy and un-PC in this modern era…if I’m not invited back to do another run report you can draw your own conclusions!
A shout out to Darren O’Leary who, having been doing parkrun since 2013, completed his 150th run. Much kudos to you sir.
Alan Jackson, who started in 2014 is now 50 not out as are both Ellen Wintle and Karen Gopsill. In fact a single run at the new Bedworth parkrun earlier this year means Karen gets to celebrate again this weekend when she will complete her 50th run at Kingsbury Congratulations to all of you on joining the back of a very long queue for T-shirts!
The personal bit…
Hands up if you’ve ever said to somebody you know “You should give Parkrun a try, you’d love it.” I’m sure plenty of us have. And hands up if you’ve ever found it a tiny bit frustrating that sometimes you just can’t get across to people who’ve never participated how wide-ranging the benefits to them could be …if only they could be persuaded to take their first tentative steps.
They’d then realise that their understandable apprehension about ‘not fitting in’ or ‘not being a runner’ or ‘running’s not for me’ or just simply ‘oh, I couldn’t do that’, is their mind playing tricks on them and their nervousness would disappear as soon as they turned up for their first time. Again, I imagine plenty of us could relate to this.
Yet, so many of us seem to display the same nervousness when it comes to volunteering….and before some of you grab the remote and change channel and think here’s another one…on their soapbox about volunteering…I’m a newbie to volunteering too, so I’m merely offering my view as the equivalent of one of those people that you’ve all been trying to coax along to take their first steps at parkrun….
Yes, I’ve taken my first* tentative steps into volunteering and do you know what….like when we all first started parkrun itself…it didn’t bite.
In fact, I completed a double whammy last week, volunteering as a marshall and offering to be your author of this ‘ere run report…
I can highly recommend marshalling…you get to just stand still and watch. Easy-peasy! As well as cheering people on and getting the much anticipated high-fives off the kids that take part (and some adults who took pity on my disappointment at not having as many as I had hoped), I got to see the front of people that I normally only ever get to see the back of and I got to see that the front runners basically struggle just as much as those of us much further down the field – because we’re all pushing ourselves. It really reinforced the fact that parkrun is for everyone. 5k is 5k. Whether you’re in the sub-20 minute brigade or the 40+ group, we all run the same distance and we’re all achieving our own goals, whether they be helping with our own individual mental health issues (and I’m not too proud to saying it’s done me the world of good), improving our own physical fitness, enjoying the social side or anything else, it doesn’t matter. Lots of us are probably a combination of all of these, but we’re all there for our own reasons and good luck to you all….although, if the sub-20 minute brigade ever square up to the 40+ group, can I just say that I would fear for you sub-20s - there’s nearly 3 times as many in the 40+ group!! Cue the famous line from Zulu…).
So, what I’m trying to say is next time you find yourself saying to someone know “You should give Parkrun a try, you’d love it”, try replacing the word ‘Parkrun’ with ‘volunteering’ and see if you can persuade yourself to take the plunge – just like you did when you started parkrun.
“You should give volunteering a try, you’d love it”,
Anyway, I’ll go back to my day job now of trying to persuade my wife to take her first steps at parkrun!
As a parting gift I’ve put together a KWP crossword for the adults and a word search for the kids. All the answers are surnames that were in last week’s email with the full set of results. Hope it gives you some enjoyment.
Oh, and see some of you tomorrow - not all of you obviously as I’ll be late!
*not strictly true as I have done barcode scanning before but my point wouldn’t have sounded half as good if I’d said that! Hahahaha!