Tony Langdon discovered parkrun in 2015 but didn’t do anything beyond register for three years. When parkrun came to town, he started athletics and focused on that and for three years and couldn’t see a way to fit parkrun in.
All that changed in 2018 when Tony discovered virtual running/racing, where you cover a set distance anywhere in the world and parkrun was a perfect vehicle for that.
In late 2018 to early 2019, I discovered there were increasing efforts to include people with a disability and other minorities into parkrun. As I am on the autism spectrum and have personally gained enormous benefits from being active, this is something close to my heart, and I wanted to make closer connections with the local parkrun. However, as a sprinter, I still had the issue that running 5km simply doesn’t fit into my training and competition schedule for much of the year.
However, I found the solution was also built into parkrun – volunteering. At one parkrun in early 2019, they were short a marshal the night before, so I put up my hand. I rolled up to the parkrun the next day, and after a quick briefing from the Run Director, I was off to my post.
I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and saw volunteering as my way of staying connected to the parkrun community.
Since that first volunteering stint, I’ve been a regular volunteer, and during my winter cross country season, I even experimented with running parkrun in the morning, and a fast 1k cross country in the afternoon. This combination has been very effective as part of my winter training. But even then, on days of key runs or longer events, I scheduled a volunteer stint at parkrun. I’ve recently passed my 25 parkrun volunteering milestone and have the purple shirt to prove it.
As for my favourite volunteer role, I like to mix them up. I’ve been a marshal (at both available locations), timekeeper, finish tokens, barcode scanner, tailwalker, and even made a cameo appearance one morning when time was tight, to deliver the first-timers briefing, before heading off to my other commitments. So in a sense, my favourite volunteer role is “all of them!”
After 15 years of parkrun taking place every single week, like us, you’re probably missing your Saturday morning routine We’ve come up with six ways you can recreate the parkrun experience whilst staying safe in the comforts of your own home… 1. Put on your kit and represent We’re all spending the vast majority of our…
parkrun may be out for the time being, but the School of parkrun is here! We’re super happy to say that from Monday 30 March, we will be setting daily parkrun-themed tasks for children of all ages and the whole family to try together. We’ll be covering five subjects: English Science Geography Maths…