As a fitness challenge for clients and friends, I put together a team for the Vancouver Sun Run. After a steady training program and a few group training runs, we set out early on race day to tackle 10 kilometer route. By taking part in the Sun Run, and listening to others share their experience of the event (both training for and racing), I was quickly reminded why we take part in running events.
1. Motivation to stick to your training program.
Sticking to a regular running schedule has its challenges- but trying to stick with the running when you have no goal to work toward is tough. Following a training plan for a running event gives purpose to each run you do on your own. Having a purpose and a plan is that extra motivation you may need to get out and complete the workout.
2. You are working toward a good cause.
Most running events are fundraisers for a good cause. Not only will your legs and lungs benefit from racing, but so will the community.
3. Pushing yourself a little harder.
Running legend Grete Waitz said “There is something about the ritual of the race- putting on the number, lining up, being timed- that brings out the best in us.” She is right. As soon as the gun goes off, you know you are not going for a your regular morning run; you are competing. You might not be challenging anyone around you, but you are challenging yourself.
4. Sense of accomplishment.
There is no feeling quite like crossing the finish line after training for and completing a running event. It’s exhilarating. There are crowds of excited, energized people, people cheering you on, and a large digital clock to validate your effort. The euphoria, that “I did it!” feeling, can last for weeks.
5. Motivation to train for the next race.
Running events can be addictive. Once you participate in one event, it is very possible you will be looking for the next event to train for. When you look around for an event, you will realize there are many to choose from. Perhaps you’ll want to try a trail race, or an adventure race, or up the distance and tackle a half marathon.
If you are a regular runner and want to test your limits, or a casual exerciser who wants to see what a running or walking event it all about, next week’s Run for Mom is your chance. On Sunday, May 8th the Envision Run for Mom takes place in Chilliwack. This event features an 8k road race, 5k fun run/walk and a 1k kids’ run. This event is a Mother’s Day celebration and fundraising event in Chilliwack. Funds raised for the event will go to the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation to purchase priority equipment for programs benefiting women and children at Chilliwack General Hospital.
Tanja Shaw is a Kinesiologist and personal trainer, specializing in weight loss, group fitness, pre and postnatal fitness, and health and wellness programs. She owns Ascend Fitness Coaching, which offers Fitness Boot Camps, Stroller Boot Camps, and personal training in the Chilliwack area. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.