Meet churchrunner Ken

Church Runner Ken

Name: Ken Wright

Club: Chiltern Church Runners

Age: 68

Home parkrun: Roundshaw Downs

Occupation: Builder

Number of Runs: 154


Favourite volunteer role: Finish Tokens

I like calling back the people who going charging past so intent on a time they forget their token!

What do you do at parkruns:

I’m told the slogan on the back of my t shirt has encouraged a few runners – “Blessed are the Pacemakers”.

Running wise I try to run all the way, I used to walk and run, but now I feel I’m cheating myself if I don’t manage. The first time I did it, it made me slower! But I thought I’d keep trying, and the next week I got a pb. I’m always looking for the next pb, though achieving a 60% age grade average is my next goal.

How has parkrun changed your running:

It’s changed me from 50 years of not running, I hadn’t run since cross country at school. I was doing a circuit class with some friends and wanted a new target so went to Roundshaw with our Church running club & gave it a go. I’ve had both knees operated on for cartilage in the past, but that needn’t stop people taking up running. I’ve also done my first ever 10k of the back of it running for the African Child Trust.

What do you like about parkrun:

I’ve lost 2 and a half stone – and I’m maintaining it without dieting as such, just not going mad – a lot of that is parkrun. I also think it’s helped me stay fit enough to keep playing club cricket.

I like that it’s very well organized, the websites and results are great – packed with information and stats.

I love that it’s free and flexible. People can go as much as they want, or as little, volunteer loads, or volunteer a bit. The camaraderie is good – everyone encourages one another, no one thinks they are better than anyone else. Roundshaw is great for that, and it’s a tough course, so it’s satisfying.

Most memorable or funniest parkrun moment:

What made me smile was my nephew Stevie, who I take along, at 11 years old he’s managed to become faster than me, and has started offering to coach me, he’s said he’ll ‘run with me one week, to see if we can improve my time’.

I’m constantly impressed by the dedication of the volunteers, out of the blue one week our normal route suddenly became a caravan site, but several people got up there early enough on Saturday morning to mark out a ‘B’ course, and parkrun still went ahead.

Winning the sweatshop prize at Roundshaw was a proud moment, being considered deserving really was quite humbling.