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I am an avid parkrunner and frequently extol its virtues to my patients as a way to get out, get some exercise and socialise. I explain it doesn't matter whether you run or walk, it's the getting out and doing it that counts. We have recently set up a junior parkrun in Huddersfield. It is great to see a new generation getting out and enjoying exercise from the fastest to the little child with cerebral palsy who only recently learnt to walk! Now that's inspiring to all of us.
The social side to running is one of the things that makes it worthwhile. "This side of the pond," we have an organization called Moms on the Run (http://momsontherun.com/) which draws in all levels, from completely new beginners, to competitive marathon runners. While I think it has a bit more structure than ParkRun, it is a great source of both friendship and fitness for participants.
My wife is a volunteer coach for Moms on the Run.