Saturdays mean parkrun for Gemma Safikhani, but with a baby on the way it seemed inevitable that she’d have to miss a few parkruns. However, it seems that nothing can keep her away from her Saturday morning fix at Vallaskogen parkrun in Linköping, Sweden!
Here’s the story of how to fit giving birth into a busy parkrun schedule:
I knew of parkrun in England, but lived in Yorkshire (home of hills in every direction) and was totally inactive. After moving to Sweden and having kids (Gladys, 10 and Arthur, 9) I got into training, quickly getting into running. Around that time parkrun was just starting in Sweden and my first ever parkrun was a Santa-themed run at my local event in Huddinge, Stockholm.
Soon after I moved to Linköping as a newly qualified nurse. When I heard Vallaskogen parkrun was going to start I was so excited, and decided pretty early on that I wanted to both take part and volunteer. I was the Tail Walker for many weeks, sometimes with the kids and after a while started helping with other roles. I’m currently volunteer coordinator/Run Director, working closely with Gunilla, who’s the Event Director.
I’ve had a complication-free pregnancy and have been able to keep active and run throughout pregnancy, right up to Saturday 16 April, where I walked and jogged around the course, just like usual!
Then, the timing of labour on Monday (thanks Doris!) meant that I could volunteer the week after, which ended up being my favourite Tail Walking roll. Obviously it’s not something that I was relying on being able to do, I had some extra volunteers planned in! But, the benefits of getting out in the fresh air is so worthwhile!
After nearly 5 years and approaching 130 events, it’s soon time for the final Kungsängen parkrun, which will be the event that is held on the ‘special day’ for Swedish parkruns, namely Sweden’s national day, June 6th. But the town is not going to be without a parkrun, as the event will be moving…
Efter nästan 5 år och närmare 130 event är det snart dags för den sista Kungsängen parkrun, som blir den som hålls på ”specialla dagen” för svenska parkruns, nämligen Sveriges nationaldag den 6 juni. Men kommunen kommer inte att stå utan parkrun, eftersom eventet flyttar några km bort till en ny bana vid Lillsjön…