Name: Garrett Hynes
Occupation: Software Developer
Local parkrun: Kilkenny
Number of parkruns completed:
I have completed 65, 63 in Kilkenny and two in Cabinteely (Although I forgot my barcode once in Cabinteely so the official record is only 64. Lesson learnt, don’t forget your barcode!). I’ve volunteered 12 times.
How did you get involved in parkrun?
After getting too old to be chasing guys half my age around a football field, I joined the Triathlon club in Kilkenny and soon learned that a lot of the members were regulars at parkrun. So I signed up and went along to my first parkrun just before Christmas in 2014. I’ve been going as often as I can ever since.
What do you love about parkrun?
There’s so much that’s great about doing parkrun. The best thing is probably the social element. There will always be someone you know there so there’s always a bit of craic before and after the run. Even volunteering is great fun. Another benefit is that it is a lot easier and more fun to run with a big group of people than to just go out pounding the pavements on your own. I definitely push myself a bit more on parkrun than I would if I was on my own. As it’s a timed run, the motivation is always there to try and beat your PB! Finally, it’s the best way to start the weekend. It gets you out of bed on a Saturday morning and once you’re finished you have your run done and you still have the rest of the day in front of you.
Who do you participate with?
My wife, Paula, and for the last year, our 13-month-old son, Luke. We bought a running buggy just so we could keep doing parkrun with him. He’s been going since he was 11 weeks old! Paula and I take turns pushing the buggy around. Paula was still regularly going while pregnant with him and even walked it three days before he was born!
Any parkrun milestones / achievements you would like to share?
Obviously getting to 50 was great. It had only taken me just over three years since my first parkrun!
How has parkrun impacted positively on your family outside of 9:30am on a Saturday?
When I first signed up, I was just going on my own. I tried to encourage Paula to come with me but initially she wasn’t interested. Eventually I convinced her to come along and she has loved doing it ever since and has gotten into running in a big way now. She just completed her first half marathon this year and is now thinking of doing her first marathon next year! We now go to as many runs as we can as a family.
Do you have a health or fitness goal?
I’m always looking to get faster and fitter!
Who is your dream parkrun running buddy?
Paula and Luke!
What was your best parkrun experience?
The organisers having balloons for me when I finished my 50th parkrun. I wasn’t expecting it but it just goes to shows parkrun spirit is alive and well in Kilkenny!
What was the funniest parkrun moment?
The front wheel nearly coming off the running buggy going down one of the hills in the Castle Park. It wasn’t funny at the time, but we can look back now and laugh about it.
What advice would you give to someone who’s never been to parkrun?
Just sign up and give it a go. When you’re meeting new people all the time and once you start seeing your run times going down, you will find it one of the most satisfying and rewarding things that you do, and you will start looking forward to it every week.
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Name: Brighid Smyth Age: 54 Occupation: Head of Corporate Communication, Vhi Local parkrun: St Anne’s parkrun Number of parkruns completed: 83 in 16 locations How did you get involved in parkrun? I ran my first parkrun on the 28 September 2013. At the time I was training for the 2013 Dublin City Marathon…