You may associate 5Ks with getting up way too early and digging out that activewear you use, well, not as often as you should. No more. The growing popularity of night runs such as The Color Run Night, The Blacklight Run, and The Glo Run are changing the face of fun runs, starting with the timeframe. Morning may be go time, but come nightfall, it’s Glow Time!
Each of these races takes place at night and offers plenty of glowing distractions along the way. The atmosphere at these events is electric and fast paced but you don’t necessarily need to bring your Nike’s to keep up. Participants get very creative with their apparel, decking out tutus with glow sticks, covering themselves in glow bracelets and necklaces, and don’t even think about showing up without a couple pairs of flashing glow stick glasses.
If you really want to stand out, take your outfit to the next level by choosing a specific neon color for your team or creating a character. While making elaborate costumes is not required it certainly adds to the fun. Where else are you going to see a troop of hot pink butterflies racing against a pack of multicolored flashing glow worms.
These races are happening across the country, with events being hosted every weekend throughout the summer. They are becoming so popular that some cities are opting to host multiple races per year or making a long weekend out of it by hosting multiple days in a row. While the big race names are successful in gathering the most participants, local communities are quickly catching on and creating their own localized events around the same theme.
Some of these runs give back to charity and some do not. To add some personal meaning to this event, choose a cause you care about and theme your outfits around raising awareness for your charities’s name or mission. Use social media and race hashtags to let people know who you are running for. If you are really ambitious you could even ask local business to make a donation matching the cost of your race participation entry fee.
Because these events are focused more on neon colored fun than on speed, the races are a good fit for every age and ability. Avid runners can enjoy themselves alongside families and park walkers and everyone has an equal opportunity to glow and “get glowed”. Strollers are allowed and for most of the runs, children 5 and under are free with a paying adult participant. While technically the glow powders and paints hurled around during the race are washable, it is recommended runners wear a white or neon shirt that they don’t mind “getting glowed” in.
No need to bring your iPod either. These events come ready with multiple DJs, dance floors and plenty of bass to keep you moving throughout the race course. If dancing is your cardio, this event is for you. Consider the 5K portion of the evening your warm-up because these events are all about the after party. Don’t even thinking about packing it in and heading home once you’ve reached the finish line. Glo runners are invited to stay and party into the early morning hours with food, beats, and blacklight EVERYTHING.
Normal races encourage participants to be courteous and practice basic runner’s etiquette. Not here. At The Color Run Night all of your fellow participants are out to get you. Runners come armed with glow paint and confetti cannons. It’s all in good fun however, and The Color Run Night has aptly named itself “The Happiest 5K on Earth”.
Each checkpoint lets you celebrate your progress by introducing a different color to attack with. (Ex: 1K is yellow, 2K is blue) Upon finishing, runners are rewarded with a back up supply of color and it’s an every man for himself free for all. Grab some backup ammo for your light up bubble guns because this party will be glowing on for awhile.
One look around the starting line of a Glo Run will have you thinking, what’s going on here? Is it a dance party? A paint fight? A brightly colored parade of weirdos who reject traditional exercise? Yes, it’s all of those. It may not be a serious runner’s cup of tea, but that is kind of the point. Finally, a race for people who hate running, and mornings. So throw some glow in the dark laces in your running shoes, put on half a dozen glow necklaces and hit the course this summer.