weekly newsletter 22nd January 2015

welcome to the newsletter


In this week’s newsletter Alzheimer’s Research UK profile one of their supporters, VitalityHealth report on their faces, we’re looking for more masters, we reveal the winning Volunteer Club t-shirt design and parkrunner A19147 Chris Jones steps into Tom’s shoes for a few weeks.

When Tom said he was off on holiday for three weeks so I’d better write the Newsletter column my immediate reaction was a complete blank. When I read the parkrun newsletter, I approach it in exactly the same way as a newspaper, where I go straight to the football pages and then come back and read the front page. With the parkrun newsletter, I scroll past Tom’s column (sorry Tom, I do come back to it later!) to get to the letters and parkrunner of the week. What could be more uplifting than reading about how the parkrun community has changed someone’s life? Suddenly, the world’s a better place.

So, what are my parkrun credentials and how have I ended up writing this piece to 600,000 people? Well, I’m eleven short of 300 parkruns and all things being equal I should be the fourth non-London based parkrunner to reach that milestone. Even better, I’ve been able to combine my passion with my profession and now share Tom’s shed/office, where I look after the financial side of parkrun UK.

I first heard about parkrun from my friend Andy, who told me that his mate Tom had started this initiative where you could run every Saturday at nine o’clock at the park in Leeds, for free. I thought about it for around 30 seconds and concluded that it wasn’t for me. The reasons were obvious. I don’t run, I’ve never run and I never will run; I walk, but I don’t run. I don’t possess any running kit, I’d look ridiculous in Lycra and I’m so self-conscious that I’d rather miss the bus than break into a trot. Saturday at nine o’clock? I’ll be half way up Pen-y-ghent, not hanging around in a park with a dubious reputation in the city. But I couldn’t get past the ‘for free’ bit. It just didn’t make any sense. Eventually I registered and sheepishly turned up – I’d never done an organized run so didn’t really know what to expect. Fast forward 288 runs and I think I’ve got the hang of it.

So what makes me keep coming back? It’s the atmosphere, friendliness and the sheer variety of experiences it offers. If I want to run intervals, I can (I rarely do, but the possibility is there). If I want to test myself, there’s a ready supply of people around my pace for me to chase. And if I want to pootle around talking to other parkrunners in the sunshine, I can do that as well. I can go to any parkrun in the country and know that I’ll be welcomed and that I won’t make a fool of myself. And I can be pretty sure that I’ll make some new friends over a mug of tea afterwards.

There it is again – the F-word. Friends. I’ve just looked up the results from my very first parkrun and I’m amazed at the number of names there that I now count as bosom buddies, mates, nodding acquaintances, work colleagues and pub quiz teammates. I’ve only just noticed that Chris Wright was on tour with a contingent from Bushy at my very first run.

Along the way, I’ve also become a runner. A card-carrying member of a running club (the mighty Hyde Park Harriers) and the proud owner of more T-shirts than you can shake a stick at. Yes, this hill walker has become a runner. A parkrunner.

Happy running,

Chris Jones
Head of Finance & Fundraising

P.S. You can read this week’s junior parkrun newsletter here.

supporters: our greatest strength


At Alzheimer’s Research UK, we believe our supporters are our greatest strength. So, as part of our partnership with parkrun, we’ll be profiling some of the inspirational individuals who are helping us defeat dementia.

This week we introduce Paul Bulmer, an avid parkrunner and fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Research UK. The 56-year-old, who lives in Cheshire with his wife, Alison, has raised £2,000 for pioneering dementia research through running and chalked up 25 parkruns in 16 months at Delamere Forest.

On the face of it, Paul seems like a typical fundraising runner. But he’s far from it…

In 2012, aged 53, Paul was diagnosed with Posterior Cortical Atrophy – a rare variant of Alzheimer’s disease which typically begins with visual difficulties. PCA affects just a few thousand people in the UK, the most well-known of whom is author and Alzheimer’s Research UK patron Sir Terry Pratchett. It is a progressive, neurological disease which affects skills such as reading, driving and seeing what and where things are. Other symptoms include difficulties with literacy and numeracy and the inability to cope with changes in light. Thinking skills and speech may also be affected.

Since his diagnosis, Paul has had to stop driving and give up his job in IT financial services. But he’s always enjoyed running and, although it’s more of a challenge these days, he’s able to continue with the help of guide-runners.

Paul said: “Although I’ve had to give up my job and need help with many day-to-day things, I like to concentrate on what I can do rather than what I can’t. I’ve always been a runner, but now I run with guide-runners because of my visual processing difficulties. It’s a challenge, but I want to run for as long as I can. My diagnosis has closed many doors for me but I’ve been pleased to find it’s opened others.

“The only answer to dementia is research and I plan to do everything I can to help Alzheimer’s Research UK find the preventions and treatments so urgently needed. I hope fellow parkrunners will join #TeamARUKparkrun so we arrive at that day sooner.”

Paul is currently in training for Wrexham’s Village Bakery Half Marathon on the 15th of February, which he’ll be running for Alzheimer’s Research UK.

For more information about our partnership with parkrun and how you can get involved, visit www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/parkrun.

Miranda Johnson
Head of Corporate and Community Partnerships
Alzheimer’s Research UK

faces of Vitality Run Series


Our Faces of Vitality Run Series continue along their training journey to the upcoming Vitality Brighton Half Marathon and Vitality Bath Half Marathon:

- Hannah Lees gets those thinking juices going as she ponders about girls and sport. “I do all my best thinking when I’m running. There’s something about the rhythm of my feet and my breath that loosens and untangles all the scrambled thoughts and smoothes them out.“ What do you think about when you run parkrunner? Share your runner’s musings with us and Hannah on the Vitality blog

- Meanwhile Ian Isaacs shares his battle against the elements with us: “I was cycling into the wind and a particularly strong gust would catch me and it felt like I was going backwards.” Does Mother Nature prevent him from training? Of course not, he takes it indoors. Find out what exercises has Ian been doing indoors on the Vitality blog.

- And finally Rhys doesn’t let the sub-zero weather take away from his ambition to beat his personal best – and he succeeds by a whole 21 seconds. “The temperature was lingering around zero, and I finished the run feeling like I had just emerged from the dentist after a lengthy operation – with little control over my numbed face,” he says. Read about Rhys’s progress on the Vitality blog.

We have short-listed and selected our Faces of Vitality North London Half Marathon. Congratulations to Simon Lang and Clare Georghiades! – Stay tuned next week for their first blog entry.

Want to achieve a Half Marathon challenge?

Be part of the Vitality Run Series - a 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 the whole Series.

A Vitality Run Series event may provide the motivation you need to become a fitter and healthier you in 2015.

Find out more here.

looking for more master athletes


Manchester Metropolitan University is still conducting their nationwide study into bone health in master athletes. The formal name of the study is “VIBE” (Vertical Impact on Bone in the Elderly).
Their aim is to understand physical activity patterns in older athletes and the effects of regular exercise on muscle and bone health. For their study they require a final 50 master athletes over the age of 60 years. Volunteers must have competed at regional standard in sprint/middle/long distance running in the past 12 months.

What they would need you to do

All they ask is that you simply wear a monitor for a week and then return it to them – via a freepost facility. The study is being managed by former European cross country champion Jessica Coulson. Jess has competed numerous times for Great Britain at both track and cross country championships but has suffered numerous issues with bone health during her career including a career saving operation to unite a fractured bone in her foot. Jess therefore has a real passion to improve bone health for others in any way possible.

parkrun has established an encouraging attitude towards the positive effects of physical activity. The Manchester Metropolitan research team share such an attitude and have teamed up to try and recruit as many people to partake in the study as possible to help contribute to a better physically active nation.

If you would like to support the research and get involved please contact Jess at j.coulson@mmu.ac.uk or find out more here.

the winner is…


Over 28,000 parkrunners all over the world voted for the design of the new Volunteer Club t-shirt and here’s our winner!

The logo took 89% of the vote and in a sprint finish ‘eggplant’ crossed the line with 49% ahead of ‘sunshine yellow’. T-shirts will go into production shortly and we’ll let you know when they are available.

parkrun population


Here are this week’s summary statistics for parkrun UK (including junior parkrun)

Number of runners - 51,521
Number of volunteers - 4,521
Number of first timers - 7,415
Number of PBs - 7,806

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
My son Nathan and I love Conkers parkrun, and the thought of missing a week is almost unthinkable! Last Saturday's run was more than a little special for me personally though. After a chilly couple of miles I noticed Nathan smiling to himself and was a little intrigued. I assumed he was thinking about a Minecraft video he'd been watching but he simply turned to me and said "I love parkrun Dad". I can't begin to describe how this made me feel. Running with my son, and on occasions my daughter, are moments I will cherish forever. This feeling we both share is due to the incredible effort that has made Conkers parkrun such a fantastic place to spend our Saturday mornings.
Regards,
Stephen Withington


Hi parkrun UK
At the beginning of 2014, at just under 20 stone I managed to creep under 30 minutes for the first time in a while after three weeks training. By the end of the year I managed to lose seven and a half stone and run under 18 minutes. Looking forward to parkrun each week was a huge motivation in helping me improve my running and lose weight. I am lucky enough to have seven different parkruns within 30 minutes drive of my home in Newbury to keep things interesting, and rotated a different run each week. It helped me achieve 31 PBs throughout the year over the seven different courses.
Regards,
Matt Pembroke


Hi parkrun UK
My mum Danielle started parkrunning a few years ago and last week she beat me to completing her 50th parkrun and has also volunteered many times. Although we live 200 miles apart, parkrun has meant we enjoy a good catch up on the phone on Saturday lunchtimes to see how our parkruns went. I hope she doesn't mind me wishing her a happy 56th birthday this Saturday at Northala Fields parkrun. She is an inspiration to me, as are so many of the parkrunners and volunteers of all ages and abilities that I meet every week. We love parkrun, thanks!
Regards,
Caitlin Rice


Hi parkrun UK
Our daughter, who is nearly 13, has Russell Silver Syndrome, a rare condition which causes low muscle tone and difficulties with physical activities. Regular parkrunners, Alison and Mike Smith were joining us for New Year, and challenged themselves to complete both Panshanger and St Albans parkruns back to back so Emily (along with her friend, their sisters and us) challenged herself to walk the St. Albans 5k. This was a tremendous achievement for her - she tires very easily and struggles with hip, knee and foot pain. We would like to say thanks to your marshals for being patient and supportive with us - we were the last participants and yet they stayed in place, and accompanied us to the finish, but without hurrying us, or making Emily feel uncomfortable, despite it being cold and grey! Emily is stoked to have managed it, so thank you for helping her new year start so positively.
Regards,
Rachel & Dan Pidcock


Hi parkrun UK
As I'm not in training at the moment, I have been going to the gym instead of parkruns or my club run if it's been raining. However, yesterday I decided, sleet or not, I was going to run outside. I turned up this morning at Little Stoke parkrun and five minutes later was told it was cancelled. I was very disappointed having made the effort. But as the sun appeared I decided to run/slip 5k around the local area. I saw other runners doing their laps on my return so decided to do one lap too taking me up to four miles. I thank the organisers for thinking of our safety and am actually pleased for the way it turned out.
Regards,
Lynn Booth


Hi parkrun UK
On the 17th of January with the temperature at -3°C there was bound to be some ice but little did the Run Director at Crystal Palace parkrun expect the lake to be flooding over the route turning it into an ice rink.
Quick work from a number of people,many of whom forewent their own run in order to help out, devised a diversion which meant a safe passage, albeit akin to cross country. So thanks to all the volunteers who stood in the freezing cold guiding us and prevented the run being cancelled. If this wasn't enough, other runners stopped and helped the buggy pushers over the mud in another true sign of parkrun ethos.
Regards,
Bob Bell


Hi parkrun UK
Just back from Florida where I had an amazing experience running the Clermont Waterfront parkrun on the 20th of December. This was followed by a most sociable breakfast with Karen Bowler pictured here and her fellow runners, who with her husband have set up this run, just west of Orlando. 'It's been really hard work' she said but worth it, especially now she has an enthusiastic team of support volunteers.
Regards,
Alan Charlesworth


Hi parkrun UK
The BBC new series Wolf Hall started on Wednesday the 21st of January and the Yeovil Montacute parkrunners are looking forward to seeing our parkrun course featured, as a lot of the filming was done here. We had good fun here last year when we started our parkrun from the jousting arena and had the run briefing from Anne Boleyn's Royal Box! (shh - don't tell anyone we played with some leftover props!)
Regards,
Martin Chaffey

parkrunner of the week


Name:  Julie Barker

Club:  Durham City Harriers

Age:  38

Home parkrun:  Durham

Occupation:  Teaching Assistant

Number of runs:  15

Favourite volunteer role:  Marshal

What do you do at parkruns:  I love running and I've got my two children and even my husband joining in. It's the best way to start a Saturday morning.

How has parkrun changed your running:  My first ever parkrun was in 2013 and at the end I vowed never again! Then in January 2014 my New Year’s resolution was to keep fit so thought I'd give running another go. After a couple of weeks on a treadmill, I decided to try another parkrun. I was so proud of completing it and promised myself I'd keep on running. Since then I’ve joined a running club and kept on running on a regular basis. Running is addictive.

What do you like about parkrun:  I love the atmosphere of parkruns. They are so friendly and it really doesn't matter how good at running you are because you’re always only trying to beat your own time. The volunteers are amazing and I appreciate their support when I'm puffing around the course.

Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment:  During my last parkrun, I was pushing for a PB but ran out of steam. Two lovely ladies from a rival running club kept me going, I'm sure they thought it was my first time. In the last 50m I overlook them and finished in front of them. I felt really guilty but pleased because I got the PB I was after!

reminders

the parkrun store

barcode reminder

barcode

Barcodes are used at all our events to record your result. Please collect and print your barcode here. No barcode, no result!

all questions answered

Do you have a question about parkrun? How do I collect my club t-shirt? How do I get my barcode? All your questions are answered on our brand new support site

volunteering at parkrun

Every parkrun event relies on volunteers and in 2014 alone over 50,000 of you came forwards and supported your local event. Volunteering is a wonderful way to make friends, feel great and have fun. If that sounds like it's for you then please contact your local event team for more details.

cancellations

For cancellations please check your event’s news page for the most up to date information.

upcoming anniversaries

January

Barnsley parkrun 24th

Eastbourne parkrun 24th

Walthamstow parkrun 24th

Warrington parkrun 24th

Cambridge parkrun 31st

Forest Of Dean junior parkrun 31st

February

Rushcliffe junior parkrun 1st

Bexley parkrun 7th

Bolton parkrun 7th

Carrickfergus parkrun 7th

Coventry parkrun 7th

Hillsborough parkrun 7th

Mile End parkrun 7th

Temple Newsam parkrun 7th

Wolverhampton parkrun 7th

Frimley Lodge parkrun 14th

Newbury parkrun 14th

Penrith parkrun 14th

children at parkrun

Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied at all times by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice. It must also be ensured that children place themselves appropriately at the start so as to prevent a situation where they are being repeatedly overtaken. This is to ensure the safety of your child.

official charity partner

Alzheimer's Research UK

our sponsors

Sweatshop investing in parkrun
Helping people be the best they can be

For 40 years, Sweatshop the award winning running store, has been helping runners find the perfect products for their individual needs. Find your closest store at sweatshop.co.uk


Vitality investing in parkrun
Health insurance that rewards you for living well.

Vitality is insurance that rewards you for being healthy. It's there to protect you when things go wrong unexpectedly but it's also there to help you lead a healthier life - meaning you don't have to claim to be able to benefit. If you keep well, then you're less likely to claim. That means it costs us less to look after you. We think that if we're saving money, you should benefit from that. So as you get healthier, we offer you discounts to encourage you to be healthy, rewards to keep you motivated and to help you rest and relax, and cashback so you've got more money to spend on doing things you love. Find out more about Vitality

our supporters

London Marathon supporting parkrun
Inspiring runners of all levels

For information on all events organised by the London Marathon, please visit london-marathon.co.uk


aql supporting parkrun
Delivering your results earlier

For information on the company powering the mobile messaging, please visit aql.com


3 supporting parkrun
Connecting parkrunners everywhere

For information on the mobile communications company, please visit three.co.uk

the parkrun show

The parkrun show

You can download your copy of the parkrun show here. (iTunes)

The parkrun show is the audible roundup of the "goings on" of everything that caught the teams eye from the weekend in parkrunworld.

Brought to you by Marathon Talk.


 

Warming up the troops

I do love a good warm-up and as it says on the About us page of the parkrun UK website I am always prepared to step up and lead one at any junior parkrun event that will let me!

I’ve warmed-up juniors at Mile End juniors, Aylestone juniors, Roundhay (more about them later) and I frequently get a few hula-hoops in at my nearest event of Rushcliffe juniors.

We strongly encourage junior parkrun event teams to include a warm-up and we really love it when adults join in too! The simple routine helps to focus the mind and prepare the body for what is coming next - a 2k parkrun. For some of our less enthusiastic participants a fun warm-up may well be ‘the hook’ that encourages them to get stuck in at all...

When I’m warming up the locals I ask if anyone would like to come out to the front to help me and there’s always a little flurry of activity as a few of the brave ones accept my invitation.

Jazz hands

“Show us your jazz hands when you’re ready to start” always seems to get everyone’s attention and then seconds later amongst other things we are gorilla stomping, sun jumping, swimming and balancing on one leg to circle our ankles. Finally we stamp our feet, count down from 10 to 1, cheer and turn to face the start line. Job done!

Here’s our junior parkrun pre-run warm up template (based on England Athletics guidelines) with a few tips thrown in. Practice at home and join in next week.

pre-run warm up routine

Last Summer I visited the fantasic Roundhay junior parkrun in Leeds, the site of one of my best sun jumps yet…

Sun jump

I met the Johnstone family there and dad Pete, Run Director on the day, told me how much his family’s lives have changed because of their involvement in parkrun.

junior parkrun #61 - Jan 2014 032

I’m delighted to see that one of his children became the first boy IN THE WORLD to join the ultra marathon Club last weekend earning his orange participation band and a celebratory cake for his efforts. Congratulations Billy!

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 13.28.17

It’s truly inspiring to scroll down the junior club report and see how many four to 14 year olds are joining us regularly at junior parkrun events across the UK and we look forward to seeing many more names on that roll of honour as time goes by. Lets hope we are creating healthy habits for life.

Happy parkrunning, volunteering and warming-up.

Helen

P.S. Listen out for our Head of Participation - Chrissie Wellington - talking about junior parkrun on the Chris Evans Breakfast Show on Thursday the 22nd of January at 8:45am.

 

weekly newsletter 15th January 2015

welcome to the newsletter


In this week’s newsletter the VitalityHealth faces have been training, Alzheimer’s Research UK offer you an opportunity, we encourage you to vote and I heap praise on our volunteers before I hop across the pond.

As 2015 marches on we’ve just broken through the amazing milestone of 600,000 different people having completed one of our 5k runs. With 5.9 million run performances logged, covering a total distance of 29.4 million kilometres, we could have run to the moon and back 38 times… if we could breathe in space that is… or run.

Anyway, our amazing journey has of course been powered by a massive family of brilliant volunteers and the more eagle-eyed amongst you may have noticed that we now have a news section dedicated specifically to celebrating their wonderful achievements. All you need to do is visit the online version of this newsletter then on the right hand side of the web page look for the section titled ‘Categories’ and then click on ‘Volunteer Awards’. The wonderful Will Prentis, parkrun UK HQ gopher extraordinaire, has recently uploaded great stories about Conkers parkrun, Forest Rec parkrun, Rushcliffe junior parkrun, Shrewsbury parkrun and Corby parkrun. Please do pop over there and have a read and if your local event team, or a member of that team, has been nominated for an award associated with their volunteering at parkrun then please encourage them to let us know and we can publish their story for all to see.

Talking of brilliant volunteers I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the amazing Ray and Ann Coward (the parkrun kit pixies) for their work over the last few years in shipping out tens of thousands of milestone t-shirts to parkrun events across the UK. When that little tradition started as Darren Wood was presented with a fleece after 100 runs I doubt even the most visionary of visionaries could have imagined where the parkrun milestone clubs would be by our 10th birthday. As exciting as our recent announcement about Tribesports coming on board is, it certainly marks the end of an era as these special t-shirts will now be by-passing our event teams and winging their respective ways straight to the runners… and now the volunteers. Ray and Ann, to achieve what you have with the resources available is nothing short of miraculous. Thank you.

That’s about it for me this week, I’m away for the next few newsletters and mind-blowingly excited that I’ll be at the inaugural Crissy Field parkrun in San Francisco on January the 24th.

Happy running,

Tom

P.S. You can read this week’s junior parkrun newsletter here.

faces of Vitality Run Series


Our Faces of Vitality Bath Half Marathon have hit the ground running in their first week of training:

- Ian hasn’t only completed his 100th parkrun, but he also challenged himself to run up the Giant’s Grave at a gradient of 42%. “Needless to say I did not run that particular section but more scrambled up it, almost on hands and knees.” Catch up on his experience on the Vitality blog and if you need any tips from Ian on how to survive the ‘mud, sweat and hills’ feel free to ask in the comment section.

- Run in your lunch break, run before or after work, perhaps having asked your employer about flexible working, join a gym or buy/rent a treadmill to get you through the tricky winter months, all great advice; just not for mums! Go to the Vitality blog to find out the creative ways Hannah has found to fit fitness in. Here’s a taster: “30+ kilos of children and bike seats make things extra challenging but that’s a cross-training session ticked off!”

Meanwhile Rhys, our Face of the Vitality Brighton Half Marathon took part in the Laureus training day and trained with the legends, Sally Gunnell & Daley Thompson:

- “The session was packed to the brim with excellent advice, and I took away a wealth of tips for training and recreational time alike which I’ll be working into my schedule.”

We will be following Ian, Hannah and Rhys on their journeys to completing half marathons through weekly blogs and photography updates.

Want to achieve a Half Marathon challenge?

Be part of the Vitality Run Series - a 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 the whole Series.

A Vitality Run Series event may provide the motivation you need to become a fitter and healthier you in 2015.

Find out more here.

VMLM place up for grabs!


Did you miss out on a coveted place in this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon? Fear not – Alzheimer’s Research UK is giving you another chance to take your place on the starting line. To celebrate being named parkrun’s official charity partner, we’re offering you the chance to get your hands on our last remaining Golden Bond place for the 2015 event.

To apply, simply fill out our online application form telling us why you want to run for us, and pledge to raise a suggested minimum of £1,900 in sponsorship for Alzheimer’s Research UK. The closing date for applications is midday on Wednesday the 21st of January and the lucky recipient will be revealed in the parkrun newsletter on the 29th of January.

As well as entry into one of the world’s most iconic runs, we’ll provide you with your very own co-branded #TeamARUKparkrun t-shirt and fundraising pack. You’ll also receive an invite to our post-marathon party, which this year is being held at a venue just off Trafalgar Square.The charity’s army of supporters will also be out in force on the day to cheer you on from the side-lines.

Each year, inspirational fundraisers from across the UK pull on their running shoes to tackle the famous course to help boost funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Last year alone, our fantastic Virgin Money London Marathon runners raised an incredible £111,600 towards pioneering dementia research – bringing us closer to finding ways to diagnose, prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

Whether you secure our final marathon spot or not, there are ample ways you can help defeat dementia by becoming a member of #TeamARUKparkrun. Thousands of parkrunners have already headed over to our new partnership page – www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/parkrun – to discover the various ways they can help power the fightback against one of the UK’s greatest health challenges. From the site, you can apply for charity places in a number of prestigious events, or use your own ballot place to support the cause. You’ll also discover a whole host of other inspirational fundraising ideas and great volunteering opportunities. You can even share your own experiences of dementia to raise vital awareness.

However you choose to support us, we promise to support you every step of the way.

Miranda Johnson
Head of Corporate and Community Partnerships
Alzheimer’s Research UK

voting for volunteer tees


Hopefully most of you will have already seen our founder Paul Sinton-Hewitt’s message 'Introducing free milestone t-shirts for everyone' which included news of the brand new Volunteer Club and an invitation to be involved in the design of the first-ever volunteer t-shirt.

Nearly 28,000 parkrunners across the globe have voted so far to nominate their preferred colour and logo and we have extended the deadline for voting until midnight (GMT) on Friday the 16th of January. Register your vote here.

Once the competition closes on Friday and the votes have been counted, the winning combination will be announced on parkrun.com and across social media channels on Saturday the 17th of January.

After that Tribesports will be producing the new milestone '25' Club t-shirt to reward all volunteers, past and present for their efforts. Another great reason... amongst many great reasons to volunteer!

parkrun population


Here are this week’s summary statistics for parkrun UK (including junior parkrun)

Number of runners - 52,124
Number of volunteers - 4,893
Number of first timers - 7,795
Number of PBs - 4,359

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
My sister started parkrunning last summer and has completed them in five different locations with her husband. Listening to them made me want to try one myself but I was worried about failing and coming last. In November I turned up at Preston parkrun and... ran with the tail runner. Was I sad? Not at all. I was proud of myself for trying and amazed at the support I got from the parkrunners and volunteers as I went round. Since then I have volunteered twice, enlisted the volunteering skills of my family too and knocked three minutes off my PB! On the 3rd of January we all did the beautiful Fell Foot parkrun at Windermere. Three runners, two volunteers and three family photographers. It was wonderful!
Regards,
Angela Clarke


Hi parkrun UK
Saturday will be my first year Arrow Valley parkrun anniversary. I'm not ashamed to admit the first ‘few’ times I walked the hill. In that year I've knocked five minutes off my PB, been a parkrun tourist twice, been a marshal 10 times, taken hundreds of photos (only about five good ones), but most importantly joined a community that takes you, and accepts you, for who you are. Running and parkrun have become a stable diet of my life, even more so since I was diagnosed with Parkinsons Disease four months ago.
Regards,
Mark Greetham


Hi parkrun UK
Partnering with Alzheimer’s Research UK is a great way of helping this important research area especially as the population ages. Partnering could also mean partnering a person with Alzheimer’s (or other form of dementia) along a parkrun route, to help them get there and take part without getting confused. This would need liaison with their carers/relatives but could then provide respite for them as well as as enjoyable outing for the affected person.
Regards,
Jill Brian


Hi parkrun UK
A huge thanks to the core team at Guildford parkrun for pulling out all the stops to devise a brand-new alternative winter route for us at the very last minute. They received an instruction late on Thursday to make changes to our route. Thanks to a monumental effort by the team, particularly, Linda Cairns and William Blair who spent several hours assessing the state of the park and devising an alternative course we still had a parkrun on Saturday. As it was quite different from our usual route we also had a lead bike, thank you to Mike Saunders for leading us on our way. Thanks to all many volunteers who made Saturday possible.
Regards,
Grace Bradley


Hi parkrun UK
On New Year's Day our fledgling and self-styled athletics club completed a parkrun triple - comprising runs at Greenwich parkrun and Hilly Fields parkrun followed by a scamper over to Southwark parkrun to volunteer at the finish. Joining me in this dash around South London were Richard Mason - completing only his 2nd and 3rd parkruns, Graham Dodds - pictured eating a celebratory banana after notching up his 50th parkrun at Hilly Fields and Ben McNamee - who needed to be recovered from a nearby petrol station only five minutes prior to the start at Greenwich after getting lost, nearly putting the whole operation in jeopardy before it had begun. Thank you to all three parkrun venues for a fantastic (if somewhat tiring) start to 2015!
Regards,
Stuart Leslie

parkrunner of the week


If you’d like to nominate someone to be the parkrunner of the week then please get them to fill out this handy online form - you can even apply yourself!

Name:  Destiny Nicholson

Club:  None

Age:  Nine

Home parkrun:  Braunstone parkrun

Occupation:  Student

Number of runs:  1 and 5 junior parkruns

Favourite volunteer role:  Car park marshal with my dad

What do you do at parkruns:  I used to watch my dad do them and my brother Kiegan and I did the junior parkruns on Sundays. My dad wanted me to give the 5k parkrun a go and to take it steady because it was my first time. I loved it and did it pretty quick for a nine year old girl, and three minutes quicker than my dad thought I would!

How has parkrun changed your running:  I've done one 5k parkrun but I’m a regular cross country runner. My dad thought it would help me as a longer training run and running with adults could push me on a bit.

What do you like about parkrun:  All of the people running and the volunteers are great. I like racing against myself and will always try hard.

Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment:  At the end five men were trying to outsprint me and they were much taller than me but I out-sprinted them all. I thought it was really funny.

reminders

the parkrun store

barcode reminder

barcode

Barcodes are used at all our events to record your result. Please collect and print your barcode here. No barcode, no result!

all questions answered

Do you have a question about parkrun? How do I collect my club t-shirt? How do I get my barcode? All your questions are answered on our brand new support site

volunteering at parkrun

Every parkrun event relies on volunteers and in 2014 alone over 50,000 of you came forwards and supported your local event. Volunteering is a wonderful way to make friends, feel great and have fun. If that sounds like it's for you then please contact your local event team for more details.

cancellations

For cancellations please check your event’s news page for the most up to date information.

upcoming anniversaries

January

Carlisle parkrun 17th

Chelmsford Central parkrun 17th

Harrogate parkrun 17th

Lanhydrock parkrun 17th

Milton Keynes parkrun 17th

Newcastle parkrun 17th

Wimbledon Park junior parkrun 18th

Barnsley parkrun 24th

Eastbourne parkrun 24th

Walthamstow parkrun 24th

Warrington parkrun 24th

Cambridge parkrun 31st

Forest Of Dean junior parkrun 31st

February

Rushcliffe junior parkrun 1st

Bexley parkrun 7th

Bolton parkrun 7th

Carrickfergus parkrun 7th

Coventry parkrun 7th

Hillsborough parkrun 7th

Mile End parkrun 7th

Temple Newsam parkrun 7th

Wolverhampton parkrun 7th

children at parkrun

Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied at all times by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice. It must also be ensured that children place themselves appropriately at the start so as to prevent a situation where they are being repeatedly overtaken. This is to ensure the safety of your child.

official charity partner

Alzheimer's Research UK

our sponsors

Sweatshop investing in parkrun
Helping people be the best they can be

For 40 years, Sweatshop the award winning running store, has been helping runners find the perfect products for their individual needs. Find your closest store at sweatshop.co.uk


Vitality investing in parkrun
Health insurance that rewards you for living well.

Vitality is insurance that rewards you for being healthy. It's there to protect you when things go wrong unexpectedly but it's also there to help you lead a healthier life - meaning you don't have to claim to be able to benefit. If you keep well, then you're less likely to claim. That means it costs us less to look after you. We think that if we're saving money, you should benefit from that. So as you get healthier, we offer you discounts to encourage you to be healthy, rewards to keep you motivated and to help you rest and relax, and cashback so you've got more money to spend on doing things you love. Find out more about Vitality

our supporters

London Marathon supporting parkrun
Inspiring runners of all levels

For information on all events organised by the London Marathon, please visit london-marathon.co.uk


aql supporting parkrun
Delivering your results earlier

For information on the company powering the mobile messaging, please visit aql.com


3 supporting parkrun
Connecting parkrunners everywhere

For information on the mobile communications company, please visit three.co.uk

the parkrun show

The parkrun show

You can download your copy of the parkrun show here. (iTunes)

The parkrun show is the audible roundup of the "goings on" of everything that caught the teams eye from the weekend in parkrunworld.

Brought to you by Marathon Talk.


 

Super duper Certificates!

I decided to revisit Wimbledon Park juniors this week as it is their birthday in the coming week. It put me in a reflective mood, remembering the process of getting this event started, the first time I saw the course, how perfect it seemed. Great visibility for all and easy access for all transport with a cafe on site. What more could an aspiring junior event ask for!

The funding proved the most difficult aspect to sort out but we eventually worked that out and what great value we have had...

644 runners, running 2,931 runs over 5,862 ks. Timewise we have run over 24 hours and are well into our second day!

Hands in the air if you think that is great news.

IMG_3622

Amongst our little Womblers, we have also earned a nice stack of wristbands.

0 ultra wristbands for 50 runs but we have someone who is quite close and as his mum is event director I think he will earn it this year!

17 have earned their marathon wristband for 22 runs.

54 have earned their half marathon band for 11 runs.

How do you know this you ask?

Well, have a look at our junior club list. Can you see your name?

Are you amongst the 1, 503 juniors who have reached one of our milestone distances?

 

juniors_ultramarathon Maybe you are one of the 2 ultra stars?

juniors_marathon Or how about one of the 327 marathon hero's?

juniors_halfmarathon Can I find you amid the names of our 1,175 half marathon greats?

If not, perhaps that can be your aim for the year ahead?

To help you find the motivation to get there we now also have some super duper Certificates of achievement to keep you focused. We are very proud of them and hope you will be too.

certificates

Once juniors have completed their milestone runs the ability to collect certificates will appear via their parkrun profile. Access their parkrun profile via a result and/or volunteer email of thanks and click on 'club progress' to download. They would look lovely on your bedroom wall!

Or how about taking it along to your junior parkrun, where you will be given a huge round of applause and a wristband from your parkrun family?

H L jnrMarple wb

I have just ordered another TWO THOUSAND half marathon wristbands! I'm not sure how long they will last but I hope it isn't too long! Let's get out there, get running :)

Have fun

jo

 

volunteer awards and nominations: Conkers parkrun

Massive congratulations to Conkers parkrun, who won the Community Award at the North West Leicestershire Local Sports Alliance annual awards evening.

The Awards evening showcases the very best that sport and recreation activities bring to communities up and down the country. The presentation was attended by Event Director Andrew Harris along with members of the core team Heidi Elliott and Robin Barber, who are all pictured.

Conkers parkrun

Well done to everyone involved with Conkers parkrun and thank you for your continued support of parkrun

Do you know of an individual or volunteer team who have been nominated for an award as a result of parkrun? Please fill out this online form and your story could be posted here!

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