Image: Global Running Day
Virtual challenges mark Global Running Day
Awareness day ‘digitally unites’ runners around the world for another year
The UK’s runners have two reasons to celebrate this week: the spring bank holiday on Monday and Global Running Day today (Wednesday, 2 June).
Always held on the first Wednesday of June, Global Running Day is a celebration of running that encourages everyone to get moving.
Since its inception in 2016 – when more than 2.5 million people from 177 countries pledged to run more than 9.2 million miles – GRD has reminded runners the world over of the positive impact running can have on our lives, as well as the power of the sport to bring people together.
In 2021, that positive mission seems more important than ever, as people around the world continue to focus on physical and mental health. Throughout the challenges of the last year, many people turned to running as a solution to help release anxiety, gain perspective, cope with cabin fever, and keep up wellbeing. GRD aims to keep them moving.
As in 2020, most of Global Running Day’s physical events are on pause, but organisers still encourage runners to mark the day in a ‘safe and responsible’ way – to help them ‘digitally unite people across the world in a global effort to encourage physical wellness and strengthen community’.
So far, nearly 4000 runners from 110 countries have pledged to mark the day with their own runs. Many clubs and groups around the world – including the New York Road Runners and the Abbot World Marathon Majors – have also created their own challenges for runners to take up, with many of them listed on the GRD website. There’s even the chance to run a 5k with real time commentary from running legend Meb Keflezighi. Global Running Day badges are also available through various challenges on Garmin Connect and Strava.
Runners lucky enough to live in Florence, Sweden or Cairo can take part in 'real life' events to celebrate the day.