Recently I finally achieved my 50th parkrun.
As a child I was never athletic and found just riding my bike to school, which was not a long distance, a real challenge. Being at an all-girls private school meant that if you were in that age category you had to be in the Netball team, Hockey team and swimming team. We always lost at all our games so this sporting world did nothing to motivate me.
Along the road I eventually joined a gym and found it a lot of fun, following the aerobic frenzy with Jane Fonda. I cannot say that I became super fit but at least motivated to remain a member. In my 40’s I was challenged by a friend to join a magazine’s running program. We did quite well until I had to pull out because of an injury.
I then faced my biggest challenge of breast cancer and came out of that with a healthy diagnosis after chemo.
My next challenge was in the Dragon Boat arena joining the Amabelle Belles (Xhosa for “breast ladies”) team of breast cancer survivors here in Cape Town and getting a magical opportunity to travel to Malaysia and bring back a Silver medal.
My real achievement was joining up with the Constantia parkrun team. This has really got me fit and healthy. What a great team of volunteers and wonderful environment to run in. All the motivation and enthusiasm of everyone and incredible behind-the-scenes work, keeping us motivated to better our personal times and feel part of a community, has finally got me to my 50th parkrun…even in the pouring rain on that eventful day. I am so chuffed.
Thank you parkrun for this wonderful regular event…now on to my 100th!
To all those out there…if I can do it…so can you!
“To be or not to be”…a parkrun volunteer!
About a year ago somebody asked on the local Facebook page if there were any people in Melkbosstrand who would be interested in a parkrun. I immediately said YES…and so began the long wait.
From being so excited about our own parkrun and inviting everyone I knew to come and run the Melkbosstrand parkrun, the Facebook grapevine was ominously quiet…and I was convinced that there wasn’t going to be a parkrun; and I wasn’t going to be a volunteer.
Every now and again someone would ask if there was any news on the parkrun and every time I would join in the chat – just in case I was left out when it came to choosing the helpers. But it really took sooo long. I actually thought that there were secret parkrun meetings going on behind closed doors (without me!)
And then the announcement came that things were coming together and it wouldn’t be too long before approval. This was just before I left to visit my daughter overseas. Now, I kind of hoped that it would be delayed by a few weeks while I was away, because if it started without me I would miss out on my chance to be a volunteer! I checked our Facebook page every morning from America – I didn’t want to miss out!
I turned up early at the first volunteer meeting even though it clashed with another meeting I had to be at that night, and then it finally dawned on me that we were already included in the parkrun family. Yay!
The rest is history…our launch was on Saturday 28 July 2018…and it was absolutely brilliant – the biggest in the Western Cape…and I was there – once again early! We have the best group of volunteers ever and I am here to stay!
While I had a fascinating time overseas on parkrun business in Australia and in the USA, it was wonderful to return to a South African Spring with some exciting new parkruns to run. The Spring weather has certainly boosted our numbers, as has the Vitality Open campaign, and we had over just under 49,000…
Kayamandi parkrun started in September 2017. Its route starts and finishes at the foot of Enkanini informal settlement, gifting participants with some of the best views in the Winelands. Something one cannot fail to notice is the pluck and courage it takes many of our local young runners to join the parkrun –…