On Saturday 14 March 2015 the 100th Cross Flatts parkrun will be taking place. The parkrun is a free weekly, timed, 5km run that is open to people of all ages and abilities taking place at 9am every Saturday in Cross Flatts Park.
It is a great way to keep fit and to measure your improvement, but more than anything it is a fantastic opportunity to get to know others in the community, to make new friends and to spend some time enjoying being out in the park together. And it truly is for everyone – our youngest runner so far was aged 4 and our oldest runner over 80; there are runners who take on the course record of 16.07 minutes and those who walk the course in over an hour – it is a run not a race and one of the things that makes it great is that all are welcome to take part and set and achieve their own personal goals.
Everyone taking part, who has registered through the parkrun website (www.parkrun.org.uk/crossflatts) receives a text or an email shortly after the run with their time for that morning meaning it is really easy to measure your own improvement and race against yourself each week. This is usually eagerly awaited as people look to see if they have achieved their much-hoped-for pb (personal best).
Over the last 2 years 1,232 different people have taken part – people who come each week and walk through to those seeking the fastest time over the course – and all with their own personal story of why they are there. Over the last 2 years there have been so many great moments and it is always brilliant to hear the individual stories of those taking part. There have been several who use the parkrun as a means of recovering from illness, others who have found a new lease of life through taking part and for many many people they have found new friends who they would never have otherwise met.
Another great thing about parkrun is that it is also an opportunity for people to volunteer – we have had well over 60 people volunteer just in the last year including several who rarely or never actually take part – they just want to serve and be part of the parkrun community.
This week is a very special landmark for the Cross Flatts parkrun – the 100th weekly event. Since it started a little under 2 years ago there has been a parkrun every Saturday except for the 2 days of Beeston Festival and one day when the weather forced the event to be cancelled. In order to celebrate this achievement and the journey of Cross Flatts parkrun so far, we hope many people will come and take part this week and then after the run we will be going to the SLATE Feel Good Cafe for breakfast and cake. In addition to this, for one week only, there will also be an opportunity for those taking part in the run to grab a 5 minute physio assessment with Ryan Carmody – physio to the Hunslet Hawks.
So come along and join us – 9am in Cross Flatts park just up from the Watsonian Pavilion – you are truly welcome.
This post was written by Mark Hodgkinson using our Create an article for South Leeds Life page.