Running Bug Forums Debates and polls Parkrun – Who Cares


  • Parkrun – Who Cares

     Sonia Blackaby updated 4 years, 8 months ago 11 Members · 16 Posts
  • Ian S

    April 20, 2019 at 3:17 pm

    Parkrun, they mean so much too so many. But is there anyone out there who really doesn’t care about Parkrun or if they ever do one.

    Don’t be shy now, if you’ve no interest then speak up.

  • Ian S

    April 20, 2019 at 3:24 pm

    Here’s my thoughts.

    I like what Parkrun has done for running. So many folk join in who would still be on the sofa without parkrun. The whole set up obviously has helped in many a way. I have absolutely nothing against parkrun.

    Though, it really doesn’t bother me if I ever do one again. In my 6 years of running I think I’ve done 7 parkruns. The last being in January 2017. I find it much easier to do a 5k from my front door without having to drive to parkrun. I can be out, run home before I’d of even parked up for the parkrun. So why bother..  I’m not a particularly sociable runner so I dont need that side of it.

    Parkrun just isn’t for me.

  • Richard Woodfield

    April 21, 2019 at 3:59 pm

    Seriously, it is probably just as well that not everyone wants to take part in parkrun – numbers are growing rapidly enough as it is!  Thinking why parkrun is so successful – it seems to have so many contributing features to its success.  A few of them:

    • it’s weekly / structured / predictable.  So it’s ideal for lots of people who would otherwise struggle with motivation.  (eg who might rouse themselves to a bit of training for a charity 10k, but without that target soon give up again on any sort of reguar running)
    • very inclusive ethos – lots of clapping and “well dones” at finish funnel for people finishing in 40++ minutes – can give massive boost to self confidence to people who’re maybe struggling with weight issues, or simply haven’t done much to keep their fitness
    • in today’s horribly divided and stratified society it’s excellent for getting people from across community to mingle
    • brilliant way of getting / keeping people doing exercise into their  50s, 60s, 70s etc, with the flexibility of “run, jog, walk, volunteer”
    • volunteering very well organized /structured with lots of different roles and different levels of commitment – lots of appreciation given to volunteers.
    • it’s only 5k – and with the number of different parkruns – for most people it’s generally local and so doesn’t eat too far into weekend
    • national infrastructure good – the results service, the fact that you can see all your results from different parkruns in one place
    • extremely flexible for “proper” runners.  You can use it for speedwork, for recovery runs, for progression runs, for bimbly chats.  You’ve got a race the next day so you can volunteer to marshal or just go for gentle leg loosener….
    • gets lots of people using parks and similar public open spaces.  With pressures on local authority budgets it gives very tangible reason for continuing to invest in parks.

    Anyway, that’s a few thoughts.

  • Ian S

    April 21, 2019 at 4:15 pm

    Richard, what you write is very true and I doubt anyone would disagree with the good parkrun offers, even the ones of us who dont do parkrun. Tis indeed a great success story.

    I was just interested,  and this all came from a piece I read elsewhere about anyone who really have no interest in doing parkrun for whatever reason. Loads of folk on the bug do parkrun,  I’m fishing for the ones who don’t.  And why.

  • Chris Pattison

    April 22, 2019 at 5:17 am

    I’m a big fan in honesty – although after 3.5 years I have just chalked up my 15th run.

    For me its the reasons largely as Richard has said.  Its a great place to be on a Saturday morning and just a lovely feeling when you are seeing the joy on folks faces as they get over the line regardless of their time.   There are obviously some faster runners, but its usually the folk that come last that get the biggest appreciative applause.

    I’ve helped since I got involved and for the last 3 years have also taken on the role of RD as part of a core team.  I think the friendly community type spirit is what I take away more than anything.  It is rare that I am not there on a Saturday morning (I’m around 130 volunteer stints as well as 15 runs).

    But in terms of how it features in my running/training then this is not something I get much if any benefit from.  For me it started as my attempt to give something back, although in fairness now I get a great deal back from it.  My preference is always to run my own thing, although I enjoy a parkrun if we have a takeover or if we are out and about as a tourist.

  • JillyMP

    April 22, 2019 at 5:55 am

    In 4 years of running, I have done only 5. I am one of the ones who don’t do it.

    Why? Because a Saturday morning 5k rarely fits into my training schedule which is often a rest day, and, in all honesty, I can be a little ( a lot) lazy after a week of early mornings. Also feel guilty disappearing first thing at the weekend.

    Not everyone finds Parkruns sociable either, there are clique groups, and it is difficult to fit in if you’re shy or feeling less confident.

    BUT, I do want to start going, only yesterday I was formulating a Parkrun and Icecream Summer Challenge in my head.  I was first lady finisher twice which was a massive confidence booster and it does give you a time trial, not that it needs to be or do I need it. If I can get my OH to go, that will allay some guilt especially as I’m starting swimming lessons at 7.30am soon. Also I am now looking to run both Saturday and Sunday as a part of my training though I’m not sure a 5k will fit into those plans?

    I do admire all those that go especially the volunteers, it really is a success story for getting people involved in activity and the community.

    Hopefully, I’ll make it next weekend….


  • sharnie1

    April 22, 2019 at 9:03 am

    3 main reasons it’s definitely not for me;

    1. Parks are largely in urban areas and I’m usually trying to get as far away from that as possible on a weekend run.

    2. All those people 😮🙈😣 I like peace and quiet on my runs – I’m not a very social runner.

    3. 5k on a Saturday just doesn’t fit my schedule, in fact 5k rarely features on my schedule full stop?

    I also get a little irked by being told I ”should” try parkrun and how much I’d love it – usually by the same people who think the London marathon is the holy grail of marathon running, neither is ever likely to be my thing.

    I’m respectful however of the benefits of parkrun and what it’s done to change a lot of lives for the better so it certainly has its place 😊

  • Martin Penrice

    April 22, 2019 at 10:36 am

    I’ve never done a park run as a park  run I’ve always ran at least 5 miles then ran it then 5 miles back just look at it as adding miles on ,or I’ll use it at end of a outing on fells just to cool down sort of thing . Me personally wouldn’t just do a park run don’t see the point just doing 3 miles that said I’m not knocking anyone who does it’s obviously a great thing going by the large number of guys doing them every week it’s just not worth the effort for me as I personally wouldn’t go out the door for less than 6 miles please don’t take this as an insult to guys who do less it’s just my way of training

  • Richard Woodfield

    April 22, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    I see that  a parkrun has just started up in Hexham.They’ve got you surrounded, Ian and Sharnie, and are closing in – won’t be long before there’s a nice convenient one in Bampton!?  😉

  • Ian S

    April 23, 2019 at 7:02 am

    Richard, it wouldn’t make for a very good run here. The park is tiny and has 1 diagonal path in it which at best would take 1 minute to run out and back on. No where to park. So I think where safe.

  • meercat58

    April 23, 2019 at 10:01 am

    The appreciation of parkrun becomes more evident when you join in on a regular basis. It doesnt have to “fit in” with anyones training because you dont have to run to be part of it, volunteers are hugely appreciated, at Hereford we have a lady who is not a runner but she marshalls every other week without fail. If you’ve never volunteered its difficult to appreciate its not all about the runners.

  • Vicky Pixi

    April 23, 2019 at 10:41 am

    I don’t love them but i don’t hate them either

    I think there a superb idea to get people up off there bums on a Saturday morning, and there designed for EVERYONE, fast, slow, fat, thin – no one judges you.

    It’s free, so for people who want to experience that race environment who really can’t afford spending money on an event then thats a huge plus.

    It’s sociable, so gets people meeting new faces and maybe making new friends.

    It’s a great way to get beginners into a structured running programme and a bench mark for further distances.

    The only time i do park run is with hubby and i think we’ve done 4?? reasons being are…. its a Saturday morning – If they did an evening park run or even late afternoon, that would be much better  for me personally 🙂 but there so over crowded to – not my idea of a nice Saturday morning, having to elbow my way through crowds of over enthusiastic runners  LOL, id much rather do my own park run on my door step when time suits ALONE, but my absolute BUG BEARER is that if you went to park run with no Achillie issues then you might come away with one due to the pushchairs being rammed in the back of your ankles or being tripped over by a dog lead. Im all for people running with dogs and buggies but not somewhere where it’s so over crowded Saying all that, think were off to do market rasen parkie next weekend to see what its like ;0)

  • Ruth Cleeves

    April 23, 2019 at 12:44 pm

    I love the reason that Park Runs started and to that end they have been a huge success. Also, a lot of people have got a great deal of pleasure from them, which is good. However, they are not for me. I’m mostly a lone wolf when it come to jog/walking as I like to have a good think and enjoy the natural sounds/sights.

  • Richard Woodfield

    April 24, 2019 at 9:16 pm

    Picking up on point made above by Meercat, there’s been a really good example at our parkrun of the huge impact of volunteering.  There’s a link here to a short video about the story of Tori and Emily, who would be unable to run but nevertheless regularly volunteer as our cheerleaders.

  • Lizzy

    June 13, 2019 at 4:34 pm

    ive only just come across this one Ian.

    I have done Parkrun a few time but not for a while now, my 5k PB was done on holiday a few years back and dont think i will ever beat that time.


    I see a few bugs do reqular PR and all seem to enjoy and get involved volunteering as well as run it. My local PR i have always found a bit cold, not down to the marshals and the rest of the volunteers but mainly other runners.


    I have come across a few that have been friendly but mainly unless your in a run club, run group or friends then your on your own.


    The whole reason behind PR i am starting to think is disapearing a bit. Everyweek now on my news feed i get a post saying where was the fastest PR times ? who was the fastest? is in this taking the real reason PR was set up away? now i feel its too competitive.

    im speaking honest now by saying if i went on sat to my local PR i would also try to run a PB, for myself time wise and also to finish in a good position in my age group. So what im also saying is that i would use PR as competition, should i be doing that? or should i sugn up for a 5k race? and enjoy PR and help and support runners,walkers to improve their running?



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