COVID19 and running from Coach G

Coach G is a passionate parkrunner who happens to run a community training group for free in the Pretoria area. He graciously has started giving us advice on how to parkrun/walk a little better so we can reach our PBs and PVs (Personal victories - see the latest Runners Wolrd for more on that)

But then came the Coronavirus and a total suspension of parkrun in 15 countries for almost 7 million registered parkrunners. So what now? Coach G gave us some sound advice.

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This week I planned to build on with the speed work tips, but in light of the COVID-19 pandemic we are all facing now, I decided to make this week’s tip about running and the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the past few days, athletes around the world have come to the realization that the landscape is uncertain and setting goals for races and parkruns, need to be put on hold for a while.
Most events and races have been cancelled or postponed, and with the news that our favourite parkruns have also been cancelled in the wake of this pandemic, we sit and wonder, what now?
This may be frustrating and disappointing for us. We are facing an unprecedented threat to our population and lives as we know it. All of us must now make sacrifices to look after each other.
Tips to keep you running safely through this COVID-19 outbreak
  • There is a great deal of research that indicates that moderate exercise helps boost the immune system. So, don’t stop running! However, it is best to keep the intensity down and curb the intense sessions for the next 4 to 6 weeks.
  • Diet also plays a vital role. Eat fresh fruit and vegetables (make sure to wash it before use) and supplement with additional vitamin C and zinc.
  • You know that COVID-19 passes from person to person easily, it is particularly virulent. Therefore the most important way to protect yourself is to be careful with your interactions with others. If you are running in a group, don’t run to close together. Stay a minimum of 2 meters apart from your fellow athletes.
  • A time like this is also a great opportunity to work on our weaknesses. Strength training is an area we can all improve on. Going to the gym could be risky, so look up articles on the internet on strength training using your body weight. You can do these strength training exercises at home as you don't need any additional equipment

Top Tip:

Wash your hands regularly and carry a small hand sanitizer with you to use.

Sound Advice from Coach G.

On an additional note - no group gatherings are to be arranged at ANY of the parkrun venues at this critical time. The event directors and core volunteer teams of all parkruns WILL keep you posted on developments and when we will be back at parkrun, be it Hazeldean Farm or any of the over 2000 parkruns in 15 countries around the world.

You can still go run at many parkrun venues at a completely different time by yourself and with your family or partner. Please be mindful of the World Health Organisation's guidelines so to not spread the Coronavirus to those who cannot fight it.

Until then

Stay Active

Stay Healthy 

Stay Happy


#DFYB – Don’t Forget Your Barcode!


If there is one rule at parkrun, it is to NOT FORGET YOUR BARCODE.

Here are some Frequently asked questions regarding your barcode we often get asked

Can I bring my barcode on my smartphone/watch? 

No, unfortunately not. We are only allowing our teams to accept printed barcodes. Although this has been allowed in the past, this rule will be enforced strictly from now on. 


Essentially this means paper barcodes, plastic barcodes or our official wristbands.


What are the main reasons we’re not accepting digital barcodes right now:

You’re so much more than a number! 

Key to stimulating human interaction is knowing someone’s name. As such we have a rule that we will only display an parkrun ID in conjunction with that person’s name. We each have a number, but every one of us is so much more than that. Many digital devices do produce a good representation of the parkrun barcode, but they typically don’t have the option to include that person’s name.

What happens in an emergency? 

We encourage the parkrun community to update their In Case of Emergency (ICE) details to provide crucial pieces of information that may enable an event team to deal with a collapsed or disorientated participant more effectively. Your emergency contact details are included on printed parkrun barcodes but unfortunately they are not available on many of the digital versions we have seen.

Funnel Dynamics 

What we mean by that is the flow of parkrunners from crossing the finish line to having their barcodes (name and position) scanned and being released into the big wide world.

At the moment this process is pretty seamless even at the bigger events which may well have in excess of one runner per second for extended periods of time and may be scanning 500+ people every week. Stick in a load of smartphones with sweaty screens that first need to be opened by tired parkrunners and suddenly you’re adding on a good 15 seconds per parkrunner. Stick a 15-second increase per each of 500 runners at an event and you’ve added almost 2 HOURS to the total scanning time! That’s assuming that the various technology providers get it right… 

Let's not think about a popular device’s operating system updating on a Friday night and thousands of parkrunners’ barcodes becoming inaccessible.


In years to come, we will most likely move away from our current system of printed barcodes, but right now our position is that we will only allow our teams to scan printed barcodes and not phones, watches or other digital devices.

I forgot/lost my barcode, Can you add my time?

Thank you for running with us at the weekend but sadly we can not add your time.

If you ran without a barcode at the weekend, unfortunately, we operate a no barcode - no result policy, so we're afraid you'll have lost that result. We have been allowing this in the past but we need to more strict in this case as well. If you sweated your barcode into nonexistence during the run, that is different as you arrived with your barcode. 

Fortunately, it is easy to print off new copies of your barcode - follow the link in the weekly newsletter, old results email or follow the 'request a reminder email' link on every event's home page. If you don't have access to a printer, why not ask a friend or relative to print it off for you. And then keep a copy in your car, your husband/boyfriend/friend's car, in your cellphone!

parkrun operates a strict 'No printed barcode - No Time - No Exception' policy at all of our events

So PLEASE don’t ask a volunteer to add your time or scan your phone...

Can I run without a barcode?

Yes, but you won't get a time and we can’t call your family in an emergency!

If you cross the finish line please stay in the finish funnel Ducking out of the funnel severely distorts our results. You can just give your token to a volunteer. 




No Freedom Day parkrun at the Hazeldean Farm

The 27th of April, a Monday, is Freedom Day and has replaced Christmas as the additional day (aside from New Years)

Hazeldean Farm will, however, NOT be open as an official parkrun as our entire Core Team is away (From Clarens for a stage trail run to Ballito on holiday).

Should you wish to run on the day, you will be doing so as a freedom run and will need to pay the Day Pass fee to do so.

Please go to to see where a Freedom Day run is happening.



International Women’s Day parkrun! So the chicks took the day off

The 8th of March is International Women's Day (#IWD2020). There is a rich history behind this, with the first IWD gathering being in 1911. The day is not country, group or organization specific - and belongs to all groups collectively everywhere.


What is International Women's Day?

International Women's Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

parkrun international looked at the amount of women that parkrun in comparison to men, and found that men join parkrun more often than women, both in volunteering and in participation. Which is rather sad especially considering the inclusive nature of parkrun.

But then, we asked our local stats expert (Dankie Japie) to take a look at the figures for Hazeldean Farm. And we can be very proud that WE have more women running and volunteering than men!

57% women to 43% men volunteering!

Male parkrunners - 41.65%, Female parkrunners - 49.29% (Unknowns - those who forget or don't have barcodes - 9.06%)

Women parkrunners and volunteers at Hazeldean Farm parkrun ROCK!

Side note - if you have not heard Event Director, Ingrid Hauger's loud voice and even louder and contagious laugh yet, do come visit. You will see why we have such a strong volunteering group of strong inspiring women, from Event Director to all our core volunteers, who are all loud and proud and ready to cheer you to YOUR Personal Victory!

Looking at this, our Event Director, Ingrid, decided that the girls on the team deserved the day off for good behavour. And for the first time since Hazeldean Farm started, we had an All-Male Volunteering team take over, to give Ingrid, Antoinette, Evelyn, Barbara, Jackie, Frankie, Nini, Laura and many of the other wonderful female volunteers the opportunity to do a parkrun instead. (Not that it stopped Ingrid from standing next to Run Director Tim to remind him what to say during pre-run briefing....)


Our all-Male team letting the Women run for a change!

Our all-male volunteer team from this morning!

We can PROUDLY say that the women took FULL advantage of IWD2020, as of the 382 parkrunners that joined us this morning, 199 of then were WOMEN! 142 Men joined in and 41 folks who forgot their barcodes.

We also welcomed 104 first time Hazeldean Farm parkrunners this morning, 34 having never done a parkrun before and 70 visiting us for the first time!

We also had 87 Personal Bests being run, 49 by women, 38 by men.

We want to make a VERY special mention of our First Women finisher, Evelyn Botha. Evelyn, who is one of our core volunteers and the owner of the Hazeldean Valley Trails - which is where we run, was badly injured last year, where the doctor forbade her to run. She has now FULLY recovered and today ran a Personal Best of 23.55, an over 15-minute improvement from when she first started running at the Hazeldean Farm parkrun. Evelyn we are SO proud of you.

And to every single other parkrunner who ran a PB today, a very very well done to you ALL!

Another very special milestone is this young man, Ofentse Modise, who has completed 10 parkruns. He has the biggest soul, the BIGGEST smile and our days are made so much brighter when we see this tiny little boy and his dad run in on parkrunday! Well done, Ofentse! Now for your 50 milestone!


Our 12 superstar volunteers that helped give the women the day off were:

Tim 'the Teacher' BARKER • Deon KRUGER • Japie BLIGNAUT • Donald YOUNG • Isak COETZER • Gideon VAN NIEKERK • Conrad MARSHALL • Jan JOHANNSEN • Danie BOSHOFF • Tshegofatso LETLAPE • Ethan LETLAPE • Pieter GOOSEN

Thank you to you all for being the rockstars you are and for always being willing to help where you can!

There was one woman in the team, Event Director Ingrid, but that is merely because she is volunteer co-ordinator and does the social media as well. So we are ignoring her for today :)

If you want to assist in volunteering at the Hazeldean Farm parkrun, please send us an email on with your A number, the date and the role you want to fill. We will welcome you with open arms!

Hazeldean Farm parkrun started on 25th May 2019. Since then 4,633 participants have completed 10,910 parkruns covering a total distance of 54,550 km, including 1,864 new Personal Bests. A total of 192 individuals have volunteered 512 times.

 We will be back again next week, same time, same place for another run with the cows and dogs at the Hazeldean Farm parkrun! See you there, 8 o'clock SHARP!



Leaping on a leap year day on the first 29th of February parkrun EVER!

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Does a little bit of rain stop a parkrunner from getting to run on the first leap year day?


We LEAP into it instead!

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It was perfect running weather, with a light rain, cool weather and LOTS of leaping! 234 people joined for the run, with 24 joining for their first parkrun EVER and 45 first time Hazeldean Farm visitors, including 1 Scotsman, David Main-Reade, who was kind enough to bring us some rain from Scotland - thanks David!

47 people ran Personal Bests, showing how cool, rainy weather is obviously conducive to having a great parkrun!

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15 volunteers ensured that parkrun could happen today and they loved leaping into it! We need to say a very special thank you to Barbara Hoffman, Tim "The Teacher" Barker and Lardus du Plessis who specifically gave up their parkrun to allow fellow core members the chance to run - Ingrid and Antoinette were completely delirious with excitement!


The 15 volunteers were:

Tim 'the Teacher' BARKER • Pieter-Heinrich NEL • Ingrid HAUGER • Antoinette CANT • Laura GREENHALGH • Conrad MARSHALL • Frik NEL • Nini NEL • Lardus D E DU PLESSIS • Danie BOSHOFF • Chantal Lee PEDRA • Daniela FERNANDES • Barbara HOFFMAN • Owen MACRAE • Emma FERNANDES

Feel like leaping in and helping out? Email us on to let us know!

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Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Hazeldean Farm parkrun Results Page.

Next week is the start of the Vitality Running World Cup, so don't forget to register. Read more from Bruce Fordyce in this article sent in the Newsletter on Friday.

AND we will be partaking in International Women's Day, along with all parkruns throughout the world.  We would like to have an ALL MEN'S volunteer team take over and invite all our fellow female runners to bring a new friend to enjoy parkrun! Join, run, walk, volunteer but most of all ENJOY!

See you next week, same time, same place, come rain or shine!

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