parkrun events are not races against others but a walk, jog, run, volunteer, spectate, or whatever you want it to be. Everyone is welcome and there is no pressure to run or walk the whole course, you can come along and watch, complete a lap or two, or finish the whole 5k, there are also loads of opportunities to volunteer. It’s a great place to focus on enjoying the experience!
Listen to your body
Pay attention to your body during parkrun. If you feel any discomfort or pain, slow down. Pushing too hard may lead to injuries or burnout. Remember, you don’t have to finish parkrun – nobody will judge you for stopping on your own terms – and if you do finish, it’s better to feel strong and motivated than exhausted and discouraged.
If you’re just starting out or returning after a break, remember that progress takes time. Instead of fixating on achieving a specific time, focus on gradually improving your personal best. Set realistic goals that challenge you without overwhelming you and celebrate each milestone along the way, whether it’s completing your first parkrun or achieving a new personal record.
At the finish line
When you cross the finish line, keep moving through the funnel and stay in order. At this point, you’ll be given a barcoded finish position token which should be taken to one of the volunteers using a handheld scanner. They will scan both your barcode and the parkrun barcode and you will later receive a time.
Stay for the post-parkrun gathering
After walking, jogging, running, or volunteering your way around parkrun, stick around for the post-event gathering where participants often socialise over coffee, share stories, and celebrate their achievements. It’s a great opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals, to make new friends and feel ever closer to the growing parkrun community.