Fun runs are great because they get people outside and active. They also provide an excellent opportunity to raise awareness for charities and causes.
But most importantly, fun runs are a great way to MEET new people and build friendships.
Not to forget that running is a great way to promote health and fitness.
In fact, running has become such a massive part of our culture that even celebrities like Beyoncé and Justin Bieber have joined the fun.
There are many BENEFITS to running, and there are even more benefits to participating in a fun run event.
Here are 10 reasons why you should consider joining a fun race.
Running isn’t just about getting fit; it’s also about meeting new friends.
Many runners enjoy spending time at races with their family and friends, especially during birthdays and holidays.
2. You Get Free Clothes!
You can win prizes for finishing in the first place, second best, etc. Some events give away more than just clothing as well.
Many Fun Runs give you a complimentary t-shirt.
3. No Membership Fees
Sure, there may be an entry fee into certain races, but you don’t need to worry about paying monthly payments once you pay for the race itself.
Even better, most events offer discounts for race memberships, so there’s no reason not to join up!
4. Running Clubs
There are tons of local running clubs that host weekly runs and other social activities. Check with your local running club to see what they offer.
5. Better Sleep
One study found that runners get BETTER SLEEP than non-runners. This could be due to the increased activity level during the day.
Another study found that runners slept longer than non-runners. Either way, running seems to help you relax and unwind.
6. Stress Relief
Research shows that running reduces stress levels. The act of running releases endorphins, which make us happy.
Plus, when we run, we tend to think more positively about ourselves and life in general.
Running is an excellent form of exercise. Not only does it burn calories, but it strengthens muscles and increases flexibility.
8. Weight Loss
According to research, running burns around 300 extra calories per hour. So if you ran for 30 minutes every day, you could lose 1 pound per week (but you need to take care of your eating habits too!).
9. Staying Healthy
Regular physical activity keeps your body strong and PREVENTS injuries.
10. Raising Money For Charity
Running events RAISE MONEY for charities all over the world. From helping children in Africa to fighting cancer, these charity-run events benefit everyone involved.
The Benefits Of Running
There are lots of benefits to running, but let’s take a closer look at the top five:
1. Lowering Blood Pressure
While studies have shown that walking is equally effective at lowering blood pressure, running can further reduce it.
2. Improving Mood
Studies show that people who regularly participate in aerobic exercise have higher mood scores.
In addition, running improves brain function by increasing oxygen flow to the brain.
3. Reducing Risk Of Heart Disease
Running lowers cholesterol and helps prevent heart disease.
4. Strengthening Bones
Running builds bone density, making bones stronger and reducing the risk of OSTEOPOROSIS.
5. Preventing Diabetes
People who run three times or more per week reduce their risk of diabetes by 50 percent.
Running Tips & Tricks
Here are some helpful hints on how to get started running:
1. Start Slow
If you’re new to running, start out slowly (slower than you think!).
You should WALK for 20 minutes before trying to run.
Once you’ve built up some endurance, try running for 5 minutes. Then, gradually build up your speed until you reach a comfortable pace.
2. Warm-up First
Before starting a run, warm up for at least 5 minutes.
Walk briskly for 3 to 4 minutes, then jog for 2 to 3 minutes (remember, slowly!).
Repeat this process two or three times.
3. Wear Proper Shoes
When buying shoes, choose ones that feel right to your feet.
Then, try them on outside to ensure they fit correctly (not too fit to give your toes some space).
Stretch your muscles before running. Stand against a wall and stretch your arms above your head.
Bend forward from your hips and pull your shoulders down toward your knees. Hold each stretch for 15 seconds, then repeat twice.
5. Drink Water
It’s essential to stay hydrated while exercising. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your run.
Carry a water bottle with you in a running belt.
6. Listen To Your Body
Don’t push yourself too hard when beginning a new sport. If you feel tired, stop immediately.
7. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep deprivation causes fatigue, which makes it harder to perform well. So make sure you get seven hours of restful sleep every night.
8. Eat Regular Meals
Eating small, frequent meals throughout the day will keep your energy levels high. Avoid eating heavy meals just before bedtime.
9. Keep Track Of Your Progress
Write down your weekly mileage and record your weight. This information can help you gauge whether you’re improving as you gain fitness.
10. Have fun!
Enjoy your time running. Remember to smile and enjoy the experience.
Choosing A Charity To Run For
To choose a charity to support, consider these questions:
- What do I want to accomplish?
- What would be most meaningful to me?
- How much money am I willing to donate?
- Do I know anyone else who could benefit from my donation?
- Is there someone close to me who needs my help?
- How often do I need to give?
- Can I make monthly donations?
- Will giving effort and money once a year work?
- Do I have any other options besides donating money?
- Could I volunteer my time instead?
If you decide to run for a specific cause, here are some suggestions:
- First, choose an organization that is active and has a good reputation.
- When selecting a charity, it’s essential to make sure you believe in the cause. This means that you must genuinely care about the issue being addressed.
- It’s also essential to find a charity that aligns with your values. If you disagree with the mission statement of a particular charity, look elsewhere.
- Consider the amount of money you plan to raise. Some charities require large amounts of money to succeed. Others accept smaller donations.
- Find a charity that matches your interests and skills. For example, if you like working with children, consider volunteering with a child advocacy group. Or, if you enjoy cooking, visit a food bank.
- Find a charity that offers something unique. Many charities provide similar services, but one may offer more value than another.
- Consider how long you plan to participate. Some charities only allow people to fundraise for a short period. Be careful not to commit to a project that won’t last.
- Think about what you can do to help the charity. For example, you might be able to organize a fundraiser or write a letter to the editor.
How To Train For A Fun Run
Training for a fun run should also be enjoyable. This is not the same thing as running a marathon.
For most people, fun runs aren’t about competition. Participants enjoy a sense of community and camaraderie.
A fun run doesn’t require running at all; you can simply walk through it.
To train for a fun run:
- Start SLOWLY.
- Walk briskly for five minutes three times per week.
- Gradually increase the pace until you reach your goal speed.
Half marathon: If you’re training for a half marathon, try walking briskly for 30 minutes four days per week.
Then, increase the number of walks each week until you complete 26.2 miles.
5K: If you’re training for a 5K, walk briskly for 20 minutes two days per week. Then increase the duration of each session until you complete the 3.1-mile course.
10K: If you’re preparing for a 10K, walk briskly on flat surfaces for 15 minutes twice per week. Add one minute to each interval as you progress through the program.
Exercise Regularly: When you begin exercising regularly, it may take several weeks before your body adapts to exercise.
As a result, you should feel more tired after completing your workout than before starting.
Stay Hydrated: Be sure to drink plenty of water while you exercise. Drink at least eight glasses of water every day. Water helps keep your muscles hydrated.
Eat Healthily: If you plan to participate in a fun run, eat a healthy diet before beginning your workouts.
Eat foods high in protein and low in fat. Avoid overeating sugar or fried food.
Warm-Up: Before participating in a fun run, know how to properly warm up and cool down. Warm up first with light activities such as walking, stretching, or jumping rope.
After warming up, gradually increase your intensity level. Cooldown by doing gentle stretches and slow movements.
If you’re planning to participate in a fun race, choose a time slot that works best. For example, try not to schedule a long-distance race during peak traffic hours.
Running Gear: When preparing for a fun run, remember to wear comfortable clothing. If you’re training for a race, buy new clothes specifically designed for running.
You can use a heart rate monitor to track your fitness levels. The monitor will tell you when you need to rest.
You can also use a watch to help you measure your performance. For example, some watches display your pulse rate, calories burned, and other statistics.
There are many ways to contribute to a charity. Here are some ideas:
- Make a cash gift. Give $25, $50, or even $100 at a time. Your contribution will go directly toward the charity.
- Match gifts. Match gifts are contributions made by companies whose employees match their employees’ donations.
- Sponsor a race. Sponsor a race that benefits a charity.
- Sponsor a walkathon. Sponsorships are available for walkathons, which are events where participants walk a certain distance.
- Volunteer. Volunteer your time to support a charity.
Here are some costume ideas to get you started:
1. Wear a funny hat. Choose a silly hat that will draw attention to your face.
2. Wear a superhero cape. It’s easy to dress up as a superhero when you wear a cape.
3. Wear tutus, which are popular among girls and women. They come in different colors and styles.
4. Wear an animal costume. Animal lovers love costumes featuring animals.
5. Wear a tiara. A tiara is a crown worn by royalty. It comes in many shapes and styles.
6. Wear a mask. Masks are used to hide faces. Pick a scary mask to scare people.
7. Wear a pirate outfit. Pirates are known for dressing in black and white. Dress up as a pirate for a Halloween party.
8. Wear a superhero suit. Superheroes are well known for their colorful outfits. Wear a superhero suit to a comic book convention.
9. Wear a wizard’s robe. Wizards are known for their robes. Wear a wizard’s outfit to a Harry Potter event.
10. Wear a sports team uniform. Sports teams often have uniforms. Wearing a sports team uniform helps you raise funds for a charity.
The Bottom Line
Running a fun run can be a great way to meet new people, get fit, and raise money for a worthy cause.
It doesn’t matter whether you choose to run for yourself or someone else. You can get the benefits anyway. Just remember to keep things lighthearted. And have fun!