The festive period is traditionally when race organisers take a well earned rest but there are still quite a few events taking place in the south and west of England this weekend over this extended Christmas weekend and many local parkruns even provide the opportunity to run and meet friends on Christmas Day.
On Saturday (23 December) the full parkrun 5k schedule takes place as usual but the chance to test your stamina over a longer distance is limited to Lee Valley Velo Park where there are races at 1 mile, 5k, 10k, 10 miles and half marathon organised by RunThrough.
All the races start separately and are chip-timed on the one mile circuit normally used for cycle racing. Every finisher will receive a festive medal, water, fruit, mince pie and mile split times.
Sunday (24 December) sees the Risborough Run In The Park 5K at Wades Park, Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire. This free, weekly 5k run is timed monthly and will morph into the 5k Santa Dash with 1k option for mini-Santas this weekend. The runs have been held every Sunday for three years and 632 runners have registered. Sounds like a whole lot of fun.
Christmas Day will start early for some with a visit to one of the 200-plus parkruns put on by those brilliant volunteers. Why not check here for your nearest parkrun
and put in an extra 5k run before the year ends but do save some breath to thank every one of the marvellous marshals. Of course, if you are away from home you will be warmly welcomed as a 'parkrun tourist'.
Boxing Day is traditionally when many runners get back into their routine and start getting their run/life balance back on track. There is an extensive list of events to choose from and most welcome entries on the day from ditherers like us. Here is a sample of what is on offer:
Aylesbury Boxing Day 5K, Market Square, Aylesbury, Bucks.
Clevedon Boxing Day 4, Little Harp, Avon.
Crown to Crown 5K, Langdon Hills, Basildon, Essex.
Poole Round The Lakes 10K, Poole Park, Dorset.
Saltwood Boxing Day Run, The Green, Saltwood, Hythe, Kent.
Witham Boxing Day 5, Witham FC, Essex.
Whether you are planning to run or simply taking a break to recharge the batteries runABC South wishes you a very happy Christmas and a personal best New Year.
Check our comprehensive race listings here
to start planning your racing programme for 2018
Image courtesy parkrun