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Meet the Member – Andy Hazell looks back on his running career so far, and his achievement of completing 100 parkruns

As I’m sure you’re aware, Andy Hazell recently completed his 100th parkrun, a fantastic achievement. Coming through the Pure Beginners programme, Andy is now a well established member of the club, and is loved by all! His running achievements have not gone unnoticed, and he is regularly out on various club runs and at different events, progressing more and more every time.

Following his great achievement, I thought it’d be a good chance for those who may not know him to get to learn a bit more about him…

Q: Andy, for those members who do not know you, could you introduce yourself and provide an insight into your running background?

A: Hello All, I’m Andy Hazell, a Telecoms Engineering Manager based near Sutton and have been with Sue my long suffering partner for 26 years now. There is not too much background on running (as like those who come to running later in life, I could not see the point in it at school), so first I started at Bracknell Parkrun after being persuaded by Dave Bartlett on Saturday 16th May 2016 and stuck with it ever since.

Q: You recently completed 100 parkruns, which is an incredible feat. What is it about parkrunning that you enjoy so much?

A: I found Parkrun to be inclusive and not exclusive just for those who can run, and there is always a word of encouragement and a chat with those around you!

Q: You’ve completed the majority of your parkruns at Rushmoor, what is it about that course that you enjoy so much?

A: I guess psychologically knowing where the start/finish is, and the fact that it’s usually in view, so it doesn’t seem so far!

Q: Other than Rushmoor, which other parkrun sticks out as being a particular favourite, and why?

A: Going to Bushy Park for the first time last year was a highlight. It’s where parkrun all started, and the amount of runners there is quite unbelievable.

Q: Outside of parkrunning, what other events have you completed that stand out as being most enjoyable and memorable?

A: I completed the London Landmarks Half Marathon this year, moving up from Parkrun to LLHM did seem like a good idea at the time of booking and I did do a lot running on Sundays in all weathers and through the winter. I have also completed the Frimley 10k this year, and am currently looking forward to the Brutal 5k at Hawley Lake , Thruxton 5k and Wellersley 10k. There might be more, funds dependant!

Q: For other members who are coming through the Pure Beginners course, what words of wisdom would you have for them?

A: We all have to start somewhere and abilities differ. We all take a turn at the back but someone will be with you every step of the way and give you support. You just have to keep it going, it will get easier with time, trust me I know, and you are a runner just like Sir Mo!

Q: Now that you’ve reached 100 parkruns, what’s the next big milestone/target?

A: Now that I have achieved 100 Parkruns, I will be doing some volunteering as a run director at the forthcoming Sandhurst Parkrun, so expect me to be shouting the same encouragement and congratulations from the side that I get when taking part!

Q: Thanks for taking part in this article, have you got anything else you’d like to add?

A: Thanks to Sue my partner for being my biggest supporter and Dave Bartlett for somehow convincing me to pull on my running shoes all those years ago, and to the club for all the encouragement in the few short months I have been a member.

Some great words from Andy, and an interesting insight from someone who has come through the immensely successful Pure Beginners programme. Keep your eyes peeled, I might be contacting you for the next Meet the Member article….!

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