Helen Morgan only got to try parkrun once before we went into lockdown in 2020, but it was enough to spark her new found love of running which she shares with her dog Cookie.
I first heard about parkrun from my friend Carol Dean. She was already parkrunning in Kettering and encouraged me to start the couch to 5k programme. She then sent me my own parkrun barcode tags for Christmas. At the time I thought it was a really odd present but it turns out it was one of the best I’ve ever had! She gave me the gift of running.
Watching the advert for ‘This Girl Can,’ which features my friend, Farrah, added some extra inspiration to take part in the parkrun events.
I was really nervous about going to my first parkrun, so Carol came along to keep me company.
I soon found that there was nothing to feel nervous about. Everyone was so friendly and took time to speak to me. I listened to the newbies talk and was encouraged that there were lots of other new people. The talk was very reassuring and relieved all the pressure I’d been feeling.
Then, when I was running the volunteers were brilliant at cheering and encouraging everyone and this really spurred me on. The atmosphere was great and so inspiring.
Some parkrunners were completing their 50 or 100 parkrun milestones and wearing fancy dress. I wore matching Elmo leggings with Carol and this all made it more interesting and fun.
After the park run we all went to a café just opposite the park and had a chat, coffee and a bite to eat. Lovely!
To anybody thinking of getting more active and perhaps looking to try a parkrun I would say, “Do it!”. I loved my parkrun and can’t wait to get back to it once the restrictions are lifted.
Since that parkrun and during the lockdowns I’ve regularly run twice a week and do home fitness sessions online. My partner, Neil, has bought me weights and a medicine ball. I’ve got the running bug! I have running books, running clothes and a lovely collection of running leggings and trainers.
When I did my parkrun I saw people with dogs and prams and when parkrun starts again I’m taking my dog Cookie. She’s been out running with me and loves it.
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