Parkrun how to join jogging

Image credit: Pixabay/melkhagelslag

Run your first Parkrun this Saturday – what you need to know

January is the month people around the world make promises to give up bad habits and be all-around better people. Why not do the Parkrun? Read more on how to join.

Parkrun how to join jogging

Image credit: Pixabay/melkhagelslag

The most common resolution for the new year though is to get fit. If you’ve been to a gym in January, you’ll know that for many people this is where their fitness journey starts and often ends before February has even begun.

The gym isn’t for everyone and if you’re one the many people hoping to become more active, then Parkrun may be for you.

What is Parkrun?

Parkrun is a worldwide phenomenon where groups of volunteers run 100% free timed-events in parks across the world each Saturday morning and we’ll tell you how to join.

Wherever you are in the country, there’s probably a Parkrun happening near you every Saturday morning with more events being added regularly across South Africa.

The Parkrun organisers are happy to admit that they want the average time taken to finish their 5km routes to increase every week, as that’s a sign that more people are getting off their couches and taking the first steps to becoming more active.

Don’t let the fact that the events are timed put you off. Parkuns are social events with the majority of the entrants walking. Dogs and children are welcome too.

On any given Saturday, my local Parkrun has 700 people completing the 5km course at whatever pace they can manage.

The timing part is an excellent way to see the improvement in your fitness over time or for anyone with a competitive streak that can already run 5km and wants to track their personal bests.

How to join Parkrun:

No one is going to stop you from just showing up and running/walking but if you want your time registered and wish to receive your e-mail with your results and keep a record of your runs/walks follow the steps on how to join below.

  • Go to the Parkrun website and search for a Parkrun near you.
  • Register on the website
  • After you’ve registered and confirmed your e-mail, you’ll receive a link for your barcode. The Parkrun volunteers use the barcode to record your times you’ll need to print the barcode and bring it with you to the parkrun. Barcodes on your phone will not be accepted.

Now for the hardest part: wake up early Saturday morning. Show up at the start line about 10 minutes before the start time (usually 8:00 but some of the hottest areas of the country have their run at 7:00.)

The parkrun volunteers will announce new runners and give a quick briefing on things you’ll need to know, and a few minutes after that there’ll be a few more announcements, and then you’ll start your 5km adventure.

At the finish line, a volunteer will give you a tag which you’ll give to another volunteer, usually at a table a few steps away along with your printed barcode.

Many events have coffee and cold drinks for sale after the event. As mentioned earlier, a few hours after the event you’ll receive an email with your official time.

So, if you’re one of the many South Africans looking for ways to be more active and meet new people, why not register and try your nearest Parkrun this Saturday?

Read – Watch: People are loving this enthusiastic guy from Jozi Parkrun