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Meet the Member – Gareth Hopkins completes 50 parkruns

Q) For members who don’t know you, tell us a bit about yourself? 

A) Well my name is Gareth, I live in Yateley with my partner Sam and my two daughters Emily and Felicity and our 3 cats!  I am the operations director of a busy video production company. I am a bit of film geek.

Q) How and when did you get into running? 

A) I started running in April 2017.  It was my partner that got me into as she completed the Couch to 5K and suggested I should give it a try.  Before giving it a go I always said I hated run, and my mantra was there was no point in running unless you we being chased or playing football.  As I was rubbish out on the pitch at football,  I played in goal just to minimise my running around time.  I decided to do the Couch to 5K on my own and surprised myself as I really enjoyed.  The first time of running for 1 min killed me! Once I completed the course, I decided to give parkrun a go, and enjoyed that.  So, then I looked for a running club to enjoy to ensure sure I kept the running up on a regular basis and that is when I found Sandhurst Joggers.

Q) What do you enjoy most about being a member of Sandhurst Joggers? 

A) I really enjoy the friendly nature of the club.  No matter what night you run there are always people to chat too.  I also like the wide variety runs that are on offer during the week.

Q) On which of the weekly runs are we most likely to bump into you? 

A) I mostly run on with the Tuesday night group, but have given a Monday night, Thursday night, Track  and the Sunday Look Out run a go. Just a Wednesday night to go to get the full house.

Q) You’ve ran most of your parkruns at Frimley Lodge, tell us what you like about that event?

A) I used to live in Frimley and Frimley Lodge Park was my local park.  I have friends that also run the course so I find it a very social run.  I love the course as I find it quite picturesque course, especially on the chilly winter mornings.

Q) Of the 4 other parkruns you’ve run, which was your favourite and why?

A) I really enjoyed Dinton as I found it to be another picturesque course with nice wide tracks.  I am hoping to increase the number of parkruns I have visited as I want to make a start on the parkrun A-Z

Q) What other events are on your programme for 2019?

A) I am trying for 12 in 12 of half marathons this year so planning on booking a fair few Saturn runs.  My next one is the “To Infinity & Beyond” on the 23rd Mar. Then I have The General in Winchester which is a 12 mile trial run in April. People in the club that know me know that I love a muddy run, so I will be booking in a few more Brutal runs and also maybe the Hell Runner as well. I have also booked Endure 24 and I also looking forward to the Hart4 run. 

Gareth ran his first Parkrun on 8th July 2017 at Frimley Lodge, here’s some more achievements for the statos taken from the ‘Parkrun Challenges’ Chrome Extension:-

50 x Parkruns in Total

42 of those at Frimley Lodge

16 x Personal Bests (fastest ever is 25:34 set at Frimley Lodge in September 2018 )

5 x Different venues

Most parkruns in a single year is 26 in 2018

New Year’s Day Double completed in 2018 at Rushmoor and Frimley Lodge

35/60 scored in Stopwatch Bingo

3 x volunteering as a marshal

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