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Parkrun organise free, weekly, 5 km timed runs around the world. They are open to everyone free, and are safe and easy to take part in. —Parkrun New Zealand

Measuring progress

By Roger Childs

Parkrun 1 (3)If you are already very fit or just getting underway, it’s good to be able to measure how you are doing. Timing how long you are riding, swimming, walking or jogging is a good idea and something to record in your fitness record. 

And, if you are doing the same course regularly, you can quickly see if you are improving. However, you shouldn’t become a slave to the stopwatch, as everyone has stronger and weaker days.

However doing a particular course or distance once or twice a week does give you the incentive to improve. Parkrun is fit for this purpose. 

Parkrun is free, regular friendly

If you can run or walk 5 km you can do Parkrun.  In Kapiti the venue is Otaihanga Domain every Saturday at 8.00 am. You go for 2.5 km along the south bank of the Waikanae River, turn around and then head back to the Domain. 

What is this world-wide movement all about?

  • It began at Bushy Park in England back in 2004.
  • 21 countries and more than 1900 parks are now in operation.
  • Worldwide there are more than 3,900,000 runners/walkers registered!
  • New Zealand started in 2012.
  • There are 29 New Zealand locations and over 50,000 people are registered.

Give it a go!

Parkrun 2Parkrun provides a personal challenge: to run, or walk 5 km.  You can race it, jog it, go with your kids, push a stroller, start at the back with the dog, whatever. And it’s free thanks to business sponsorship.. It’s also a very supportive institution as you get plenty of encouragement and soon make new friends.

It’s easy to register: go to  https://www.parkrun.co.nz/register/ 

Once you’re registered, the key thing to remember is to take your bar code to the event!  You’ll receiver six. However, if you leave it at home, it doesn’t matter as your name and time will still be recorded.

Tip: Laminate your bar code so it will last longer.

About two hours after the event you’ll receive an e-mail telling you what your official time was and you can see how everyone else did. Your Parkruns are counted and when you’ve done 50 you get a free t shirt.

Park run is a great way to get fitter, lose weight and feel better. You also get to know plenty of interesting people. It’s got to be good for you and may become addictive!