This year was when I had enough confidence to come back to parkrun and coaching again.
One thing that helped me keep up good mental wellbeing and fitness during the pandemic was virtual challenges and I finished my last booked one back in March that was The Trafalgar Way 271 miles long.
I decided though to continue logging my distances travelled on a personal spreadsheet until the date of my second virtual challenges anniversary on June 17th clocking up an overall distance of 2,380 run/walk miles over this time 🙂
I badly missed parkrun tourism during the pandemic and writing my blog reports about their events. So, it was not until this year I started touring again with the first event being Corby back in March.
I have attended 12 events in total this year including mini break holiday at Margate and it was great to be back in London at Sutcliffe on the path to regain my regionainaire status. I now only have 3 left to do again in Greater London 🙂
Also went to Stevenage for their 250th event 6 years after attending their inaugural one back in May 2016.
In August visited good tourist friend Lynette for her 250th event held in the beautiful city of Chichester
Local parkrun friend’s milestones included Evelyn, Terry completed 250th events, the legend Geoffrey notched up 250 days volunteered almost entirely made up of Luton event set up. Finally last but definitely not least Dawn who celebrated her 100th parkrun.
Not a parkrun milestone but a massive shout out to Shelah who recently completed 1000 days continuous running streak, outstanding effort!
As anyone knows me, I love to volunteer at parkrun and this year I added two more roles under my belt:
Visually Impaired Guide
I was very honoured to be invited by Will one of our visually impaired students at the University where I work to be his visually impaired guide at Wardown, Luton parkrun.
Since then when required support both him and Simon as a guide at parkrun & the athletics track where they are completing their Couch to 5K programs
Love this role where you are simply walking around the course ahead of the tail walkers supporting/cheering on the athletes taking part.
On the day I tried out park walking at Houghton Hall parkrun I could not have asked for a better co-volunteer to walk around with than Laura, we talked about everything parkrun, lovely morning spent.
Run 3 races this year starting off with 5K Bedford Autodrome in March where I bumped into good parkrun friend Val, then run the iconic Westminster Mile in May bumping into quite a few parkrun tourist’s friends.
Finally, an annual tradition for me is to run the Love Luton 10 km at the end of October that is alway one of the highlights of my year for me being with local running friends especially in my top buddy Martin Ball 🙂
I always enjoy coaching and it was a real pleasure again to be able to support my club Stopsley Striders on our annual beginner’s course that was the first we have held this since 2019 before the pandemic.
I was co-coaching team red with one of our excellent new crop of coaches Nicola who was a natural.
One joy I did find over the last few years was walking and this summer decided to join local organised walking groups to me in Bedfordshire.
One group I joined was the Bedfordshire Walking Club that I attend one event with them every month. They state on their profile page they are not a gentle rambling group and averagely walk over 3 mph this is great for me as it helps with my base fitness with average walk lengths are over 11 miles.
It’s been quite a wonderful year and I have been honoured to meet me so many brilliant people throughout 2022.
So what for me 2023 I will carry on completing my lucky dip tourist list, coach, attend organised walks and just be happy.
Have a wonderful New Year guys 🙂
Mark aka Silent Runner