It was wonderful to see Parkrun return on Saturday. The event took place in more than 500 parks and green spaces across England for the first time in 16 months, following its suspension due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Ten members of Hambleton Athletics and Running Club took part in the fabulous run at Northallerton. For some, it was their first ever Parkrun and for others it was just fantastic to be back seeing other members of the community out running and volunteering again. The atmosphere was upbeat and positive, with lots of smiling faces; the support and encouragement from fellow runners, volunteers and passers-by was astounding.

Sara Sherwood, a HARC member returning to Parkrun, said, “I think that coming together in the great outdoors and moving together as part of our communities is so important, and it’s great to have that back. There are so many reasons to take part – to get fitter, lose weight, beat last week’s time, to see people… the list goes on. It’s all about inclusivity and wellbeing, both physical and mental.”

Whilst HARC members were whizzing around the 5k course, including three athletes undertaking the start of their Intermediate Endurance Programme, the club’s latest Couch to 5k group were completing their third session on the field with their coaches.

Head Coach, Chris Lees, said, “It was great for our new running group to see how welcoming and friendly Parkrun events are, and to get a taster of what they will be achieving in just a few weeks. Our intermediate endurance athletes were excited to get the boost of starting their programme by participating with a field of other runners, as these opportunities have been few and far between in recent months.”

A big shout out goes to HARC member, Martin Hodgson, who volunteered as a marshal; without him and the rest of the amazing volunteers, Parkruns just could not take place.

If you would like to find out more about our friendly, inclusive, coaching-led club, please visit https://harc.uk or contact coaching@harc.uk.

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