Bushy Dublin parkrunner Niall Coppinger has just completed 100 parkruns. Here he tells us about all the memorable moments on his six year journey.
So I’ve completed 100 parkruns. It’s no big deal. Or is it? What’s the fuss.
It has taken me six years to reach this 100 parkrun milestone and along the way I’ve experienced so much of the true spirit of parkrun.
Of course I’ve run personal bests and personal worsts in my 100 results.
During those 100 parkruns I’ve had the good fortune to run alongside oceans, on top of medieval city walls, in national parks and at heritage sites. I’ve also partaken at events where teams are rightfully proud of their parkrun on a football field or on some reclaimed land.
I’ve listened to Run Director briefings warnings of ice, mud, rutting deer, snakes and even angry ducks on the course.
Along the way I have also volunteered on more than 300 parkrun days. I’ve been fortunate to enjoy the experience of undertaking most of the parkrun volunteer roles.
I also count myself as privileged to have participated with others in the successful outcome to a medical emergency at a parkrun event.
Most significantly, I’ve met many incredible people that I now consider friends. In those six years I’ve been invited to parkrun weddings, birthday parties, Christmas parties and such is the cycle of life I’ve attended parkrun funerals too.
So you see it is very much the journey not the destination. Clichéd as that is.
The fact that the journey has taken me this long makes it all the more enjoyable for the experience.
As someone once said to me, parkrun “where you make friends whether you like it or not”. This wasn’t actually the reason I signed up, but I like it!
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