Hi, I’m Helen Hood, Head of Event Delivery at parkrun UK, and last weekend I joined a sea of apricot in the parkrun wave of the Westminster Mile.
In the Hood household it’s an annual highlight and the fourth year we’ve taken part as a family, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
I’m sure some people love it for the actual ‘mile bit’ but for me and for many others it’s supporting every single person across the finish line, just like we do in parkrun world, that gets me. The atmosphere was absolutely electric this year and I felt rather emotional standing there soaking it all up.
And especially so when some of our junior parkrunners turned the final corner and were greeted by huge cheers of encouragement and applause with 100 metres to go.
Meet Clare, Phil and Maisy. Clare is the Safeguarding Lead at parkrun UK; a parkrunner, a volunteer and a running club member, Phil is not one for exercise, and Maisy is their three year old daughter.
Maisy already has a substantial parkrun pedigree. She’s been pushed round 5k courses in her buggy and is already a regular volunteer, and she’s not even four yet. She’d spent the entire week asking her mum when it was race day and absolutely loved her first experience of The Westminster Mile. Result!
And get this… Having seen how much Maisy enjoyed the experience Phil has decided to join Clare’s running club and start parkrunning because he saw how much his daughter loved it, and hates the thought of not being able to join in or feel fit enough to do something she loves so much. That’s what I like to call ‘parkrun osmosis’.
We really do like to think that we are instilling a lifelong love of habitual exercise and a thirst for quality family time at both parkrun and junior parkrun and consider the parkrun mile an extension of that.
Just under 300 parkrunners took part in our wave this year, and over a quarter of those were aged 17 or younger, participating alongside siblings, parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents and friends. A truly joyful occasion!
Please consider this an open invitation to join us on The Mall in 2018 #parkrunfamily
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