Europe gets active on Global Running Day

Kids' Mile Run

The Italian Athletics Federation staged a non-competitive mile run around the Foro Italico Park in Rome as part of Global Running Day on Wednesday 5 June

For the fourth successive year, European Athletics was a proud Global Supporter of Global Running Day - a worldwide phenomenon which was initiated by New York Road Runners (NYRR) in 2016.

Global Running Day took place on Wednesday 5 June and is an inclusive project designed to encourage everyone - runners and non-runners alike - to celebrate their love for running and inspire others to get active regardless of how far or how fast you run.

European Athletics promoted the initiative to all 51 of its Member Federations and embraced the spirit of the day by forming the ‘Your Sport for Life’ team. The team began their working day on Wednesday with a group run starting from the European Athletics Headquarters in Lausanne and the 13-strong cohort pledged to run a total of 30 miles as a collective.

European Athletics formed the 'Your Sport for Life' team as part of the Global Running Day celebrations
European Athletics
European Athletics formed the 'Your Sport for Life' team as part of the Global Running Day celebrations

Last year, more than 282,500 people from 161 countries pledged to run 11.2 million miles on Global Running Day and the organisers are confident they can surpass this figure in 2019.

Many European Athletics Member Federations this year staged events to get people active. The Italian Athletics Federation was particularly proactive, staging a non-competitive one-mile fun run in the Foro Italico Park, involving more than 500 children.

The Foro Italico Park incorporates many of Rome’s principal sporting locations such as the Olympic Stadium and an added incentive for participants was the chance to get a glimpse of the likes of Gianmarco Tamberi and Filippo Tortu who are both competing in tonight’s Rome Diamond League.

There was also a one mile race in Spain - one of 40 countries around the world to host a Kids’ Mile Run - and Olympic and European high jump champion Ruth Beitia was on hand to encourage the motivate the participants.

Belarus also followed suit by staging a mile run in Brest which saw around 1000 children taking part. Each finisher was rewarded with a medal from the Belarus Athletic Federation. “I ran a mile and got a cool medal at the finish! I really enjoyed the event, and next year I plan to take part in it again,” said Nina, one of the participants.

The focal point of Global Running Day was the Million Kid Run which aims to get one million children around the world pledging to run one mile.

The European Athletics Quality Road Race standards act as an assurance for road runners throughout Europe. They distinguish between races that respect the standards and those that haven’t sought certification or assessment. They form the foundation of Running for All, a strong recognisable brand for running activities throughout Europe.

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