People of parkrun: David
When David started parkrunning for fitness in late 2014, he never would have believed where he’d end up less than two years later.
Name: David Noonan
Local parkrun: Ellenbrook, WA
Attending since: October 2014
In August 2014, David moved home to Perth, overweight and struggling to stay motivated to exercise.
“I started off at 144 kilograms,” says David. “It was hard to push myself towards longer or more frequent physical activity.”
It wasn’t until David’s sister suggested joining the Aveley parkrun, which she attended with her children, that things started to change for him.
David started with many of the typical first-time parkrun concerns. “I was worried about being required to run, let alone whether I’d even be fast enough,” he admits.
But those concerns disappeared almost immediately, as the parkrun community welcomed him with open arms, excited to have another first-timer in their midst. “People welcomed me to the event, asked where I was from, and just generally gave me a lot of encouragement.”
It got even better once he was out on the course. High fives aplenty were exchanged, shouts of encouragement followed him along the track, and he was even cheered over the finish line.
“My wife thinks I’m crazy because I run too much. I’ve turned into a bit of a parkrun pusher.”
“It was that atmosphere and the encouragement of my family that got me back next week, and the week after that,” David says. “Then they warned me that I’d start to get addicted once I could run the whole five kilometres. I was running about three at that stage, and they were talking about 10 kilometres, and half marathons, and full marathons.” He laughs, “I thought they were crazy.”
He couldn’t have been more wrong. David attended his first parkrun in October 2014, and in 2015, he ran four half marathons and a full marathon, as well turning up to parkrun every week.
“So far this year I’ve done three half marathons, a full marathon, 50 km races on road and trail, and a multitude of smaller events,” he says. “At the end of August I’m running the Perth City to Surf marathon. If you told me I was going to be doing this two years ago I would have laughed.”
David now sits at a comfortable 85kg, feels great, and rarely misses his Saturday morning ritual of coffee, parkrun, then time with the family. “My wife thinks I’m crazy because I run too much,” he jokes, “and I’ve turned into a bit of a parkrun pusher.”
David now volunteers on the event team at Aveley parkrun, and is constantly encouraging his friends and work colleagues to come down and give it a go. “I’d like to give something back, in the same way that I received,” he says. “Seeing the regulars at parkrun is great. Seeing new people come and have a go – and then seeing them next week – is even better.”
Run better with Medibank
Medibank is proud to partner with parkrun, a non-profit organisation that hosts weekly 5 km running events, all across Australia and the world. Best of all, it’s held early in the morning on a Saturday or Sunday, and it’s 100% free. It’s not about competing with other people – it’s about pushing yourself to be better, one step at a time.
Medibank is also the title sponsor of the Medibank Melbourne Marathon Festival, held on the 16th October, 2016. If you’re ready to take the next step up from parkrun, there’s sure to be an event distance that suits you with 3km, 5.7km, 10km, half marathon and marathon events all being held on the day.
To read more about the Medibank Melbourne Marathon Festival and get some tips on becoming a better runner, visit personalbetter.com.au.