So, as I’m encouraging others to experience the various running events in and around the Reno Tahoe area, I’ve started to think to myself… why would you want to participate in a running event? I mean, what motivates somebody to go out and run a 5k, 10k, half marathon, or even marathon? Here is a quick rundown of some of the the reasons I participate in running events:
1. Motivation: This may be true for others too, but if I am signed up for a run that I know is a few weeks down the road, I’m going to make sure I run so I’m ready for it. If I’m not signed up for a run, even if it is just a 5k, I will let myself slack off and get out of shape. I also don’t want to be that guy out there running who looks like he just hopped off the couch to run the race and needs someone to carry him to get water at the finish line.
2. Fat: You’re going to lose it, which is typically a good thing. Going hand in hand with the motivation deal is losing weight. If I’m running constantly, I’m losing any unwanted pounds and overall, that just makes me a happy guy. I also get to eat more and not feel guilty.
3. Friends: Believe it or not, you can meet a ton of cool people when you go out and run a race. Everyone is out there doing the same run at the same time, and probably for some of the same reasons you are. Most people at an event don’t care if you just started running or have been running your whole life, therefore you’re going to walk away with some type of encouragement, because that’s what it’s all about. Whether it’s a high five or a slap on the booty, it just feels good.
If you want to get some really good friends, run a relay. Nothing makes you get to know a person better than being stuck in a cramped van, sweaty, tired, and smelly. I’ve met tons of people the day of a relay event and walked away knowing more about them than I probably would have ever cared to. Running makes friends, relays make good friends. Give it a try.
4. Swag: When you participate in a running event, you have the opportunity to get some cool s***. I probably have TOO many running shirts for each of the races I’ve done, but I still get giddy to see what new one they’re going to give out. Sometimes, even now, I run a race just for the simple reason that I know I’m going to get some good FREE stuff at the race expo the day before. Even more so if I’m looking to add to my collection of running medals. This next weekend, I’m stoked for the Leprechaun Race in Midtown Reno because it’s an amazing 5k run, but I’m even more excited for the awesome Pilsner glass I will get when I beat the Leprechaun. So the point here is, running swag is cool, it’s better when it’s free, and the best if you can poor beer into it.
5. Fundraising: You have the chance to support a worthy cause when you sign up for a running event. Whether you’re participating in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5k to support breast cancer or the Spring Forward for Autism 5k to support autism research, you know you’re out there helping a cause. So you’re doing something for yourself while doing something for others…. double bonus if you ask me.
6. Stress Management: I love running because it gives me some time to think about something else than the normal daily struggles of life. I tend to zone out when I’m overwhelmed anyway, so running is a good technique for me. If I’m signed up for a race, it’s even better because I have a goal to work for other than the usual stuff I have to deal with.
These are just some of the reasons I participate in running events, but it’s definitely unique for everyone. Feel free to comment and share yours too.