News - 24th April 2019

Why I parkrun

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Ahead of Whistler parkrun’s first event of the year after the winter break, we hear from Event Director Mel Whitley about her passion for parkrun. 


I started a new job recently and they asked us for our “passion” to place on our name badges, I guess as a talking point for clients and colleagues. I could have said food, or dogs, or wine… but I wrote down running. Sometimes people laugh because I call it a passion, but it does get a dialogue going about why I enjoy running.


I am by no means a professional athlete, I can run and I enjoy running – a lot. I’ve never won any big races or set out to smash any world records, I run purely for enjoyment. I will push myself sure, set some personal goals and pace times to challenge myself, but I enjoy running because I don’t need to think about it. I don’t need a tone of fancy gear, or protective equipment, I don’t need perfect weather conditions (although it helps), I throw some shoes on, put my headphones in and go…


Since starting the new position and people asking about my running, it’s given me the opportunity to talk more about parkrun and a trend I am starting to notice when people don’t classify themselves as “real runners” is that they are intimidated to start through fear of being “to slow” or not being as “good” as what they believe the group to be. This is why I love parkrun so much, there is no competition, the run is only as competitive as you want it to be. Hell, you don’t even have to run and you will never be the last person as that’s the job of our tail runner!


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parkrun is a great starting point for anyone wanting to try running out. There is no pressure, it’s not a race, and we are all there to help and encourage each other. You can start out with a walk, get that first time logged and beat it next week, maybe a little walk/jog the week after, maybe a little walk/jog/run the week after that… next thing you know you are running the whole 5km… And you said you weren’t a runner! It’s the same route every week so there are no surprises.


And it’s not just for newbies, maybe you are a seasoned runner and you need a warm up for you before your long run, change up that pace, use it for some sprint training? Or maybe you want to give back to your running community and can spare some time volunteer, share your running knowledge with others and get some good running karma points (I hear that makes you run faster!)


parkrun is open to all levels, whether a runner, jogger, walker or volunteer. Senior, youth, dog or baby in a stroller, everyone is welcome!




Mel Whitley, Whistler parkrun Event Director

Whistler parkrun begins again this Saturday 27th April at 9am

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