I love visiting different parkrun venues, but sometimes I find it really difficult to decide which one to visit next. So to help me out, I came up with a little challenge. I called it the 'seven weeks of parkrun' or to be more specific the #7weeksofparkrun.

The idea was to run at seven consecutive parkrun venues and the first letters of each venue's name combined spelt out the word 'parkrun'. When choosing which venues to go to, I went for the option of trying to run at seven venues that I had not previously run at.

At the time of the challenge, Upton Court parkrun was the only 'u' in the UK so that was the most important single venue. With that in mind I checked with the team before starting the challenge to make sure they didn't have any planned cancellations.

To make it more exciting I added a time goal into the challenge. So I set an extra goal to run them in under 20 minutes each.

Plus, each venue on my list was in a different county. So in order of the challenge I ran in Sussex, Buckinghamshire, Surrey, Norfolk, Kent, Berkshire and finally Northamptonshire.

  • p - preston park (sussex) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time:19.03)
  • a - aylesbury (buckinghamshire) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 18.28)
  • r - reigate priory (surrey) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 19.41)
  • k - kings Lynn (norfolk) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 18:40)
  • r - royal tunbridge wells (kent) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 19:39)
  • u - upton court (berkshire) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 18:53)
  • n - northampton (northamptonshire) (completed - my blog entry) (finishing time 19:09)

.. and here is the final screenshot from my parkrun log...

Other bits for anyone that might fancy giving the challenge a go:

It is almost possible to do the whole challenge within London (the 'u' is the only one that is outside).

A good thing with this challenge is that it doesn't have to be done on consecutive weeks, so if you wanted to volunteer or were injured you could still just resume the challenge from the point you reached and the letters will still appear in the correct order on your parkrun log.

On your parkrun log, the venues appear by default as most recent first so in order to view them in the correct order you have to switch the view to show them the other way around. However, the default view does mean that you could run the venues in the opposite order (nurkrap). That way they will spell 'parkrun' on your log in the default view.

Finally if you decide to give this challenge a go (or indeed spell out something else) please let me know. I'd love to hear about it and I can add you to the list below.

parkrunners that have completed the challenge (that i know of):

Steven Stockwell (me): March - May 2014 (athlete profile) using the 'parkrun' method

John Leonard: September - October 2014 (athlete profile) using the 'nurkrap' method and extended during November and December 2014 to spell 'iloveparkrun'.

Dave Robbins: January - March 2015 (athlete profile) using the 'nurkrap' method and on non-consecutive weeks.

Gary Parr: March - May 2016 (athlete profile) 'a parkrun pb'.

Ben Sowden: May - August 2016 (athlete profile) Ran a challenge where he spelled the name of his son 'Rory Sowden' who was born sleeping. You can read more about it in this blog post.

John Leonard: July - September 2016 (athlete profile) Ran at 10 venues to spell out the words 'cowell club'. This is the (un)official name to identify someone that has completed 100 different parkrun venues. He completed the final letter at his 100th venue.

Louise Ayling: August - September 2016 (athlete profile) The word 'sweet'. Sweet!

Paul Jeffrey: January - March 2017 (athlete profile) Spelled out the word 'cornetto'. This was expanded into 'parkruncornetto' and completed in May 2017. A bit of history as to why this is significant to Paul can be found on his Clair parkrun blog post.

Michael Conway: March - May 2017 (athlete profile) 'chelsea fan'.

Dan Watts: April - July 2017 (athlete profile) Spelled his name using the 'nurkrap' method.

Claire Allison: June - August 2017 (athlete profile) Spelled the word 'Lemsip'. Then completed the word 'Cockwomble' between Jan and May 2018. Between October and December 2018, Claire also spelled 'bah humbug'.

Linda Harley: July - September 2017 (athlete profile) Spelled out the word 'dancer'. You can read all about it on Linda's parkrunDANCER blog post.

Val Perigo: October - December 2018 (athlete profile) 'bah hambug'.

Michael Conway: June - October 2022 (athlete profile) 'lapenotiere' who was the messenger from the HMS Pickle, reporting the news that Britain had won the Battle of Trafalgar and Nelson had been killed.

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