It’s one of the few downsides of the UK’s world-beating running scene: it all pretty much shuts down for winter. One you reach the end of October, it’s nigh on impossible to find a large-scale race to sign yourself up for until the following Spring.
It’s kind of understandable: British winters aren’t exactly what you’d call tropical (or even bearable, really) and plenty of fairweather runners will either retreat to the warmth and comfort of a gym treadmill, or simply hang up their Asics until the daffodils start appearing.
But there are plenty of us who actually enjoy running during winter, and would relish having a big, well-organised event to train towards during the dark’n’doomy season. Praise be to Santa, then, for Cancer Research UK‘s Winter Run Series, returning for a second year following a successful 2015 London-only event that saw 15,000 red-nosed runners taking part.
All the routes take place on closed roads and pass by iconic local landmarks. More than 100,000 runners in all will get to experience fake-snow showers, polar-bear hugs at the finish line, and plenty more winter-themed surprises before, during and after the run. Because if it’s gonna be nippy, we may as well just embrace it, right?
And if you’ve never entered a race before, this could be an ideal way to lose your V-plates: one in five runners at the inaugral 2015 event had never taken part in an organised race before. Get yourself signed up then dive into our beginner’s 10k training plan.
“The Winter Run is coming to Liverpool and Manchester for the first time this year”
And, of course, it’s all for a good cause. “Fundraising events like The Winter Run Series are vital for raising life-saving funds to help beat cancer sooner, and uniting men and women of all ages and abilities in the fight against the disease,” says Clive Sanders, Head of Events at Cancer Research UK. “We’re delighted that The Winter Run is coming to Liverpool and Manchester for the first time this year, giving more people from across the country the chance to give cancer the cold shoulder.”