Junior Parkrun

The Junior Parkrun started up near us a couple of weeks ago. It is 2k, rather than the 5k (or 3 miles as I prefer to call it – I’m old school and I run in miles, not k!) of the ‘proper’ Parkrun and is run in a different park on a Sunday morning.

Junior Parkrun is for children aged 4-14. Whereas with the ‘real’ Parkrun, adults have to run with children under 11, kids can run alone in Junior Parkrun as the course is small and has plenty of marshals to keep an eye on them. Adults can run if they like, but mustn’t cross the finishing line or get in the way of any runners.

My daughter continues to run/ battle with the main Parkrun, but was keen to give the Junior Parkrun a go too.

We are running Parkrun practically every Saturday now and every Saturday she feels sick or gets too hot or her legs hurt. Every Saturday she beats herself up about her time. But still she goes back every week. I admire her determination. I keep telling her that she will get better – her time will improve and she will feel more comfortable – the more she does it. She still won’t accept that running 3 miles in 34 minutes is really flipping good for a 9 year old.

The 2k Junior Parkrun should be a walk in the park.Β It should also help her fitness and stamina for the Parkrun. Win!

I wasn’t quite sure how to get to the Junior Parkrun venue, so my husband offered to come with us.

‘I’m only coming this once though.’

As soon as we arrived, Competitive Dad kicked in. He was full of advice on where she should start (near the front) and how fast she should run her laps. He likes her to do her best every bit as much as she does.

So my daughter started the race near the front.

Her stride looked good and she was one of the first girls to pass us. The course was three laps, so we could always see her in the distance (nobody’s hair is as long as my daughter’s!). She was smiling as she ran past us the first time. We saw her overtaking people in the distance. On her second lap, she was still smiling.

My husband had a plan for her third lap, he would meet her halfway and run a bit with her, then I would be there just before the end to spur her on for a sprint finish.

She sprinted, she overtook some people and she was finished. But she told us she didn’t need us. This was Junior Parkrun. She was up against people like herself and it was easier than Parkrun. She was happy to finish the run without encouragement.

So how did she do?

She ran it in 10 minutes and 49 seconds (2k is a mile and a quarter if you like to measure things in the old money like I do), coming 60th out of 159 kids. She was 12th girl home, which I think is really blimmin’ good, considering the kids could be up to five years older than her.

So I’m very proud of my little runner again. And it looks like Junior Parkrun might be added to our weekly sporting agenda!

Parkrun, Daughter, Junior Parkrun

Author: Sarah Mummy

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24 Comments

  1. Yay it sounds like a really great confidence booster. She could watch me try to do 3 miles in less that an hour if she needed any more confidence boosting πŸ˜‰

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    • Ha ha, exactly! Not just you, but most adults! She doesn’t believe me when I say most people can’t run 3 miles. Definitely a good confidence booster for her πŸ™‚

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  2. Sounds like running with her peers was just the confidence boost she needed and that’s a great time to finish in. I’m so impressed with her managing to run 5km in 34 minutes too – I’ve never managed to complete one in that kind of time! Well done to your daughter for doing so well and so glad that she’s enjoying it.

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    • Thank you! I’m really proud of her and she’s enjoying it (despite the occasional moans on the ‘real’ Parkrun).

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  3. Gosh I don’t think I could run it that fast! Well done to her. She did brilliantly. Just wanting to do it early on a weekend morning is an achievement in itself! Well done that girl and yes, gorgeous hair πŸ˜‰ x

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    • Thank you! I must admit I’m impressed that she is happy to get out of bed early on Saturday and Sunday for Parkrun! x

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  4. Wow, she’s certainly a runner. That’s impressive, and so nice that she’s motivated (and that the pair of you can do a hobby together)

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    • Thanks very much! It’s nice that we have the running to do together and she’s so enthusiastic.

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  5. My husband is obsessed with Parkrun and my (now 6 year old) son has been doing at least half of an adult 5k run since he was 4! He’s now done about 15 runs and the last one he did the 5k in under 34 mins. Actually I might link up an old post I wrote about him doing the Alice Holt Parkrun! Junior Parkrun sounds like a great idea though – I think 5k is too far for a six year old – I tried to do it with him once and nearly collapsed in the first 1k (so unfit!). Well done to your daughter! #loudandproud

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    • Good for her, that’s brilliant. Not sure I could run it as fast, certainly not any faster πŸ™‚ It’s great that she’s sticking with it and doing so well x #loudnproud

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      • Thanks! I’m really proud of her for sticking with it! x

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  6. Gosh well done her and that is a great time as well x

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    • Thank you! We were really pleased with her time, now she will want to beat it!

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    • Thanks! She’s very determined, bless her!

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  7. Wow, your daughter did fab, her time is definitely one for her to be proud of. It’s great that she enjoyed her first junior park run and felt a lot more comfortable taking part in it. I’m impressed that she was in the top 60 and only the 12th girl to finish, that’s really something to be proud of. Thanks for linking up with me on Country Kids.

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    • Thank you! I was very pleased with her being the 12th girl – a fantastic achievement and also one I know she’ll want to beat. No doubt she will be trying again tomorrow!

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    • Thanks very much! I certainly am πŸ™‚

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  8. Oh very well done to her! I have just about got up to doing 1k in 5 mins 22 after weeks of practice so is she is doing amazingly well.

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    • Thanks very much! She has youth and general fitness on her side, which helps. She’s getting better every week.
      Well done to you! It’s great being able to run and you will gradually be able to increase your pace πŸ™‚ x

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  9. It sounds like she did brilliantly well! Well done to her.
    I didn’t know they did a junior park run, it is such a great idea. #CountryKids

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  10. She’s doing great to run 3 miles in 34 minutes and I admire her determination and perseverance immensely!

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  11. Bunny did her first junior parkrun today. 11 Minutes 6 seconds. She loved it. The twins did it too but they kept stopping to chat to marshalls. They ran it in 16 minutes 56 seconds and 17 minutes 21 seconds. So proud of them. Not bad for really uncertain 4 year olds! If it wasn’t for you, I’d never have heard of ParkRun or Junior ParkRun. x

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