welcome to the newsletter
In this week’s newsletter there’s a generous offer from Sweatshop, VitalityHealth encourage us to wrap up warm, Chris Davies introduces a new Welsh parkrun, we showcase the ‘trees on our tees’ and I want future generations to love running.
This time last year I wrote about the launch of the Roundhay and Southampton junior parkrun events, our fifth and sixth junior events marking the re-launch of our junior series as a free, weekly, timed 2k run for four to 14 year olds. We now have 34 junior events across the UK and are currently working with another 20 prospective teams. I also mentioned that we had 60,000 children registered with us in that age group around the world, today we have 135,000. Note also that in the last 12 months many of those previous 60,000 will have turned 15 and therefore not be counted. I really do feel proud that as we’ve grown over the years we’ve enabled so many young people to get involved and hopefully go on to develop a deep enjoyment for getting out and enjoying areas of open space. With my own negative experiences of running during those formative years I feel particularly passionate about ensuring future generations see our sport in a much more positive light. It would be great of course if we ended up producing the odd Olympian (aren’t all Olympians odd?) but ultimately it’s about the other 99.9% of the population. In an age of computer simulated virtual activity leading to very real problems, if through parkrun we can empower a generation to love running in the outdoors for no other reason than a love of running in the outdoors then we’ll have done our job.
Talking of loving running in the outdoors, I’d like to remind you that there are just two days of the year where you can run a parkrun event not on a Saturday… Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Not all of our teams put events on on these days, for a multitude of valid reasons, but those that do will at some point between now and then be listed on the parkrun UK Christmas Compendium. The 25th of December is absolutely my favourite parkrunday of the year and once again in an ever more commercial world where real-life human interaction is being replaced by all sorts of digital stuff it’s wonderful to see friends and families old and new coming together to do something real, for free, for the fun of it.
Thanks as always for your parkrun passion,
P.S. You can read this week’s junior parkrun newsletter here.
20% off at Sweatshop
To help celebrate our support for parkrun and everyone who takes part each week we are offering 20% off in store at Sweatshop on Saturday the 22nd of November.
Our teams will be on hand to help you find the perfect pair of running shoes and the brightest, warmest clothes to keep you running through the cold winter months. Just show your parkrun barcode at the till point to register for this amazing offer.
Click here to find your nearest store.
health and wellbeing with Vitality
Our Vitality Blog takes an imaginative approach to help improve your health and general wellbeing.
Check out our most recent running article below:
How to dress for cold weather exercise
Don't let the cold weather keep you indoors! The cool crisp air makes for a good excuse to wrap up warm and get outside whenever you can for a brisk walk, run or any other form of exercise. Not only will you burn calories and increase your circulation, but you'll also give your mood, energy levels and metabolism a much-needed boost. However, it's important to dress appropriately when training outdoors in winter, both for comfort and safety's sake. Read our guide to dressing for cold weather exercise on the Vitality Blog.
Do you want to achieve a running goal in 2015?
Be part of the Vitality Run Series - a running series featuring eight of the UK's most exciting running events, brought to you by Vitality. Get active and take on a new challenge - run one, run two or run all five remaining races in the Series. Find an event near you.
trees on your tees
On the parkrun UK Facebook page recently we asked parkrunners to show us their 'trees on their tees' and many wonderful snaps ensued!
If you would like to own one of these limited edition T-shirts please jog along to our online store and place an order. Profits will be ploughed back into parkrun to support our growth.
Here are this week’s summary statistics for parkrun UK (including junior parkrun)
Number of runners - 53,888
Number of volunteers - 4,955
Number of first timers - 6,803
Number of PBs - 10,171
feedback from the field
Let us know if you have an interesting parkrun related fact, happening or comment that you would like to share with all parkrunners
Hi parkrun UK
Cleethorpes parkrun course has an 800m off-road section which, over the past couple of weeks, due to the wet weather, has become unpleasant to run on and was putting people off. Local councillor Keith Brookes arranged for the council to provide chippings for a path which arrived on Wednesday. However, the team had to lay the chippings themselves. An appeal went out on the parkrun’s website and social media, and eight volunteers stepped forward. The eight volunteers - Steve Green, Lesley Parry, Rob Atkinson, Matt Frejizyn, John and Janet Potter, Anne Marie Fowler and Dave Smith laid the new path in a morning. This work also opens up another part of the park to all park users, as the improved surface makes it more accessible to everyone.
Hi parkrun UK
In November 2013 at the age of six my daughter begin to take an interest in her daddy's running and run club: Lincoln and District Runners. Watching them at races and at the new parkrun that had been set up in our community. Within a few weeks Madeleine had ran her first event. Madeleine is a big encouragement to others and has also got her sister and I involved in running too. Madeleine at the age of seven, has now achieved 44 park runs and six PB’s. During our first anniversary celebrations at Lincoln parkrun on Saturday the 15th of November Madeleine was awarded the accolade of ‘parkrunner of the year’!
Hi parkrun UK
Yesterday I was shocked and delighted (in equal measures) to discover I had been named the Sweatshop Prize Winner of the month by the lovely team at Eastleigh parkrun. My first parkrun was in November 2010 although I subsequently had a period of almost two years of not running due to health problems. Since returning, I have received fantastic encouragement and friendship from the brilliant Eastleigh parkrunners. I still can't believe I have won but it just proves that parkrun is all inclusive and one doesn't have to be the fastest or fittest to be a 'winner'. Thank you so much to Eastleigh and Sweatshop! The photo is taken at my 50th run in May 2014 with some of my fabulous parkrun friends.
Hi parkrun UK
We've just moved from Leicestershire to North Devon and I transferred from Rushcliffe parkrun to the new Tamar Lakes parkrun. We were made to feel really welcome and my husband did his first parkrun walk/jog. Due to an injury I volunteered as a barcode scanner but look forward to running and improving my PB at this stunning location. Many thanks to parkrun and the Tamar Lakes team.
Andrée and Steve Carte
Hi parkrun UK
A year ago I suggested to my Mum, Nuala James, that she join me at parkrun and she is now approaching her 50th run. She has seen so many benefits from parkrun and nothing holds her back from getting round the course every week. I am really proud when I see her cross the finish line. Well done Mum and thank you parkrun!
Hi parkrun UK
Our local paper, the Hull Daily Mail, published a piece by freelance journalist Ronni Thomas-Osbourne. After spending two years living in Paris Ronni gave ‘Ten Reasons Why Hull Is Better Than Paris’.
One of her reasons was, of course, parkrun!
Hi parkrun UK
Heard last week at the Peterborough parkrun: A gentleman was running with his other half, trying no doubt to encourage her. He was saying “Push. Push!” I had to smile at the response, “Just leave me alone, I'm not in labour now”!
parkrunner of the week
Name: Adam Young
Club: jOG Norwich (just a small group of us from my church)
Home parkrun: Catton parkrun
Occupation: I'm in year one at school and a part-time mess maker
Number of runs: 32
Favourite volunteer role: I love to marshal and have done it three times now.
What do you do at parkruns: At Catton we have loads of young runners. It's great. I love running in the park with it's big trees and the cake at the lodge is great as well.
How has parkrun changed your running: I have got so much quicker. I run with my dad or my mum nearly every week and have recently finished in under 29 minutes. When I started I had to stop for bits and walk but now I run the whole lot and am working on my sprinting at the end. I love being cheered on. Loads of people know my name and cheer me.
What do you like about parkrun: Everyone wants everyone else to do well. One day I would love to be first finisher but top 100 is a good aim at the moment. I love it when people cheer me on, it gives me a little boost.
Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment: My Daddy and I ran the parkrun dressed as Jedi for Catton parkrun’s first year anniversary recently. I should have worn my summer robes as it was quite heavy, but I managed to not hit anyone with my lightsaber!