Relax and unwind – with a Park Run!

When people go on holiday, mainly it is to relax and unwind. Which, of course, could mean doing absolutely nothing.

However, there is a growing body of people who like to unwind in a more active way – walking, hiking, cycling, canoeing and running.

The benefits of exercise

It is backed up by scientific research as well. Harvard University has carried out much research into the relaxing qualities of exercise and their message is unequivocal: “Regular aerobic exercise will bring remarkable changes to your body, your metabolism, your heart, and your spirits. It has a unique capacity to exhilarate and relax, to provide stimulation and calm, to counter depression and dissipate stress. It’s a common experience among endurance athletes and has been verified in clinical trials that have successfully used exercise to treat anxiety disorders and clinical depression. If athletes and patients can derive psychological benefits from exercise, so can you.”

Miles of pathways to explore

All of which is great news for our guests at Rookery Farm as we are surrounded by miles of pathways and coastline where everyone can enjoy exercise in the great outdoors.

While many people will be totally satisfied by a long walk or a meandering cycle through the Norfolk countryside, we also understand that some people will want a more competitive edge to their activity.

One way of getting that competitiveness, even in an unfamiliar environment, is to have a go at a Park Run.

What is a Park Run?

These are five kilometre, timed runs that take place at set venues every Saturday at 9am. They are free to enter and run entirely by volunteers. The idea is simple: you register for the event, turn up, run it and get a time for your efforts. At your next Park Run you can try to beat your previous time. These UK-wide events offer something for every type of runner, from the ultra competitive who will be looking to break the 15 minute mark to the first-timer, who is just happy to have completed the course. The great thing about the community event is the spirit of supportiveness that it embodies.

Where can you go for a Park Run while staying at Rookery Farm?

Well, the nearest is just four miles up the road at Sheringham.

Sheringham Country Park provides the venue for this Park Run. With its rolling hills, the Park is definitely more challenging than some but the views are beautiful and it is really worth the effort. The run starts at the Visitor Centre and comprises a one lap route through the parklands and woods. There is a cafe for refreshments and a well-deserved coffee.

Historical Holkham

Slightly further afield but with equally stunning scenery is the Park Run at Holkham Hall. The run is entirely within the grounds of the historic and magnificent Holkham Hall and starts by the lake. Like Sheringham, Holkham’s Park Run blows away the myth that there are no hills in Norfolk – the gradients aren’t too steep but the course is definitely undulating. The Courtyard Cafe offers a range of well-deserved treats when you have finished.

Stunning views at Blickling

Our the third suggestion for a Park Run event is Blickling Hall where, again, you will have the added bonus of some stunning views over the Norfolk countryside. The run starts 600 metres from the car park (it is £5 to park), but is well signposted.

This Park Run is a two-lap course on mixed terrain. En-route you will see breathtaking views over Moorgate towards the River Bure. The bonus to this run is a fast downhill straight at the finish of the race. After you have finished, you can head to the Muddy Boots Cafe for some restorative coffee and cake.

These are just some suggestions for an active relaxation time during your stay with us. Please do ask if you would like any further suggestions for activities you can do during your holiday.