I love Race for Life. It’s one of the first events I ever did when I started running, and it’s only six weeks now until we welcome it back to York. I was a volunteer marshal at last year’s 5/10K race and am delighted to be asked to be an ambassador for the event this year. Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring series of 5k, 10k, Pretty Muddy, half marathon and hiking events that raises millions of pounds every year to help defeat cancer by funding life-saving research.
Race for Life started as one event in 1994 at Battersea Park with just 680 participants, but now sees women and girls of all ages and abilities from all over the UK join together to raise money to help beat over 200 types of cancer affecting men, women and children. In 2018, Cancer Research UK hopes to recruit 400,000 women and raise £38m to help fund life-saving work.
The thing I like best about Race for Life is that it’s a really inclusive and supportive event for women who are new to running. It makes a great first race, and I loved it when I ran the 5K with my teenage stepdaughter a couple of years ago. It was the first time she’d been involved in anything like it, and she really enjoyed training and raising some money for charity.
Of course, one of the best things about Race for Life is that you don’t actually have to run it! Walkers are just as welcome. Lots of people are fundraising in memory of lost loved ones for causes close to their heart, and it can be very moving to see who they’re running for. But it’s also lots of fun too!
I didn’t run last year because I was tapering for Race to the Stones at the time, when I raised over £1,000 for CRUK. So marshalling was a great opportunity to give back a bit. Equipped with my supporter’s props, I think I had as much fun as the participants; although I was a bit hoarse from shouting by the end!
This year I’m going to be running the Race for Life 10K. If you fancy joining us in York on Sunday 16th September there’s still time to enter and do some training for it. Of you want even more fun(!) there’s also a Pretty Muddy event on Saturday 15th. Of course, if you don’t live near York there are other events all over the country. Details can be found here.
Dressing up is all part of the fun at Race for Life. Everyone wears something pink, and some people really go for it with the fancy dress! If you’re not quite brave enough for that, Race for Life sponsor Tesco sells a great range of active wear to get you kitted out for the day; check out the range here.
Let me know if you’re going to Race for Life in York, or give me a shout if you see me there!