"I'm not a runner"
‘I’m not a runner’, I’m still saying to people when they ask me. But with 203 parkruns in the bag and counting, is that still true? Am I a runner? Or worse, am I an obsessive?
It’s true that Saturday mornings are sacred. It’s true that I’ve made overnight trips to complete my Alphabet, missed the odd important event in the pursuit of a NENDY and frantically dashed across West London from one parkrun to another after a last-minute cancellation.
But I know I’m not alone in my obsession and there’s safety in numbers, so I’m asking you, are you a parkrun obsessive too?
Ten simple questions will give you your answer:
- As of 21 January 2022, how many parkrunners worldwide had completed a parkrun? Is it 1 million, 2.5 million or 5 million?
- What is particularly pleasing about coming 34th out of 144 runners at your 5th parkrun?
- At your last parkrun, where was your barcode?
- Is the Wilson Index related to an event number, personal best or number of different parkruns visited?
- What’s the furthest you’ve travelled for the sole purpose of parkrun touristing?
- Which three countries would you need to consider visiting to complete your parkrun alphabet?
- Where were you on Christmas Day at 9am?
- Have you successfully converted a friend, colleague or family member into a regular parkrunner?
- How many parkruns comprise ‘The Full Ponty’? Another point for each one you can name
- Have you run Bushy, where it all began on 2 October 2004?
- A total number of 2,500,148 finishers were recorded to date and it’s still growing!
- Those numbers are all part of the Fibonacci sequence. A parkrun obsessive would be keen to attend parkruns with event numbers that are part of the sequence. There’s an extra thrill if you can place in the sequence too
- Two points if you’ve already got a barcode on your phone, one point for an old-school wristband or printout
- The Wilson Index relates to the event number at any venue. Until you’ve attended an inaugural Parkrun, (which is normally frowned upon unless you’re local) your Wilson Index will remain a lowly zero
- One point for a distance over 20 miles, two points over 50 and three points if you’ve done at least 100 miles
- At the time of writing, you’d need to book a trip to either Zandvlei parkrun in Cape Town, South Africa, Zielona Góra parkrun in Poland, or Zillmere parkrun in Brisbane, Australia. Extra point and huge kudos if you’ve completed your Alphabet
- If you were huddled in the park waiting to start your parkrun, a point for you!
- A point for you, if you’ve shared the love
- There are three Pontys for your full – Pontefract, Pont y Bala, Pontypool and Pontypridd
- Of course you have, here’s a well-deserved point
Total number of possible points: 17
So, are you a parkrun obsessive?
Score 0 – 5
Rest easy, you’re normal and not at all crazy. Well done for keeping a balanced mind.
Score 6 – 11
Careful now, you’re developing a questionable mental attitude to parkruns. Keep it in check!
There’s no hope for you, you’re definitely a parkrun obsessive. See you on the start line!
About the Author
Jenny-Anne Dexter is a full-time life enthusiast, who likes to say yes to the abstract, the sublime and the ridiculous. A bog snorkeller, trail runner, year-round dipper and sometime cage fighter, she's currently deciding on which will be her first and only marathon...