What better way to serve and connect with the community than by making it about something you love? Explore some of these suggested ways to contribute to both your local and global community of runners.
Make that number on your body mean something to someone else. Running for a charity brings awareness about critical issues in the world and attention to ordinary heroes. Bonus? Not all charity runs require fundraising. Check out charities like Every Mother Counts or Achilles International.
Races require hard work behind the scenes, too! From course marshal to pacers, and from set-up to breakdown, there are a myriad of ways to be involved on race day. And don’t forget to show your appreciation for volunteers on your race day!
Help nurture the running community in your own neighborhood! Volunteer with a local nonprofit (both Back On My Feet or Girls On The Run have numerous chapters), support municipal races (they are often for local causes!), and buy your gear at locally-owned running stores. Since studies have shown that local businesses donate to community causes at more than twice the rate of chains, it’s like you’ll be giving back twice!
Don’t want to sacrifice your run time? Get your jog on (and add it some squats) while plogging, the Swedish phenom of jogging while picking up trash. Don’t want to do it alone? Find a local trail maintenance group or join the #pickupone movement.
Share your running spirit with someone just getting into the mix! Support that newbie in your running group who might be hanging nervously outside the circle. Or be a mentor to the next gen of running (through Kids Run the Nation, for example). Either way, your experience and mileage can be major motivation and inspiration...and you’ll probably be reinvigorated, too!
Are you already involved in giving back to the running community? If so, what do you do and why do you love doing it?! Answer in the comments below!
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