Westbury Parkrun opens today

Westbury Parkrun enthusiasts.

Westbury Parkrun will be reopening this Saturday at the Union Stadium at 7 am. Parkrun is an event that takes place in fourteen countries across five continents on a Saturday morning, the event encourages people to run five-kilometres every Saturday.

The Westbury Parkrun started with Irene Jacobs and Angela Oliphant from Westbury in December 2016. Since then, the pair has been encouraging the neighbourhood to join in with the fitness and healthy lifestyles.

The community is recognised for its violent shootings and substance abuse and Jacobs, who is the events director, said, “If we change people’s mindsets then things like that won’t happen, you will tell yourself Friday night that I must get ready for Parkrun, so you will have an early sleep. We want it to spread into our communities”.

Jacobs and her team identified the stadium and the golf course as the perfect spot because a Parkrun is a traffic free run.

Last year Edmund Bailey, a volunteer and a participant explained how this initiative helped him.

He said, “I gained a lot of weight and weighed 120 kgs by December. I’m down to 101kgs, and I’m only walking, I don’t run anymore, due to three spinal surgeries.”

The team had to stop with the fitness programme for a few months as there has been construction work being done in and around the stadium.

This Saturday the Parkrun reopens and Jacobs said: “It will be viby and filled with athletes from other Parkruns in South Africa including the CEO of Parkrun SA, Bruce Fordyce.”

Fordyce is a well-known South African marathon and ultra-marathon athlete. For more information, contact Irene Jacobs on 072 412 8260.

The 5 km run begins at the Union Stadium.

Happy runners who are about to finish the race.

Irene Jacobs, events director.

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Janice Beckett

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