parkun has become a constant in my life

— by Mark Ventry

I enjoy running on Saturday mornings. It’s a great way to get myself up and motivated, ready to tackle the rest of the day. That’s why I’ve come to love the Eramosa River Trail parkrun. It fills a gap in my exercise routine and gets me prepared for my long Sunday runs. It’s also fun!

Today wasn’t my best run according to the clock, but it was one of the best for my spirits. The smiles on everyone’s faces as the sun began to break through the clouds, the great chat I had with a new parkrunner, the words of encouragement from other runners I passed along the trail – these things all energized me.

After a challenging week, parkrun was a great way to mark the start of my weekend. For about 30 minutes, I was in a totally different headspace. (It’s obvious that I am never going to win any speed records, but that’s not the point of these runs.) The shouts of encouragement as I neared the finish line put a smile on my face and helped me run faster — and, honestly, with better form. I even had my photo taken in that wacky photo frame for the first time!

Our group was a bit smaller this week — the early morning thunderstorm and summer holidays took their toll, no doubt. Still, I saw many familiar faces. And lots of new ones, too, including visitors from Orangeville, Oakville and England.

I like how our parkrun blends the various running and walking communities in Guelph, and mixes runners of all speeds and abilities. Beyond getting exercise and fresh air, it’s an enjoyable way for me to transition into the weekend.

This nine-week-old event has already become a constant in my life. I can hardly wait for the construction to end and the full Eramosa River Trail to be open again, to Victoria Road and back. The longer trail will make this run even more enjoyable.

— photos by Angela Drystek (first photo of Mark by Natalie Intven)

Run Summary, Event #9

  • 37 finishers this week
  • Out of town visitors: Clive Biddulph of Sixfields Upton parkrun, UK; Phillip Richardson of the UK; Joanne Lozier of River Oaks parkrun in Oakville, where she is Event Director
  • Possibly a course record for pushing two kids in a stroller! — Ryan Flint of Team Vegan Trails, 19:07
  • First Finishers: Kyle Boorsma (16:36, a course record!) and Dominika Jamnicky (18:48), a couple 1-2 finish this week
  • 11 new personal bests on our course this week
  • 13 volunteers, including first-time Run Director Art Kilgour and first-time volunteer Anne Eddie
  • participants have now run or walked over 3,000 km at our event since its inception in June!