This was written nearly three years ago. Dread to think what the costs are now?
I guess on this definition I am a ‘hardcore’ runner? I set up two parkruns 7and 6 years ago nearly [free weekly timed runs] largely to be able to get my local population moving without any cost to them. The explosion in running events over the last 10 years has been mostly beneficial, and I certainly understand the costs heaped on race organisers by the powers that be [from athletic governing, event licensing bodies to city administrators] but I find the fact that most runners [both innocent newbies and old hands] now accept the silly $£prices being asked for events to be rather frightening.
Race organisers should be able to make something back for their effort, but as events have moved from being mostly arranged by running clubs for their members and beyond, to events arranged by professional companies [not that their intentions are primarily bad on the whole] with at least some staff that make their living from putting on races, costs seem to have spiralled?
One of the reasons I have completed a very modest number of events, over 35 years of races this coming Autumn, is the feeling that I can just lace my shoes up and run [this has escalated the last few years of long distance training when I could literally put shoes on, get out the door and run a marathon any day of the week on a whim].
Being part of a large crowd with the same aim in mind, a clock to watch, the bling, the buzz of the day, having aid every few miles, and the focus of ‘an event’ is certainly both enjoyable and useful from time to time, but it seems to me these days many runners enter events every 5 seconds for no clear reason? Each to his own I guess. Some perhaps can only motivate themselves to do any running or training if they have an end goal [certainly useful] in mind?
I wish to bring back a more [and here words get tricky] authentic? honest? pure? fuss-less? type of event. This will necessarily mean more low key [and if seen as good ideas then ripped off eventually] grassroots, off the cuff, guerrilla, quirky, ‘races’ or challenges.
I already have a name for the events. Stay tuned for inflatable arch-less, prize free, goody bag free, t-shirt-less, water and bling only challenge events. Will the running community buy it though? Having previously organised events from 1 Mile to 24 hour at little to no cost it amazingly appears to be a hard sell.
Just a 5 mile jog this evening.
Day18 OMC 63 miles