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Tips to Make the Most of Holiday Running Events

By Pamela Young on 11/24/2014 | GOTR Picks

According to Athlinks, an aggregator of athletic-event data, more running events are held on Thanksgiving Day than any other day of the year. In fact, the holiday season is full of opportunities to run. Here are our picks of some tips to help you make the most of your running experience this holiday season.

1. Count blessings. Not just miles. Girls on the Run’s Council Development Manager and avid runner, Lisa “Coach” Keller, shares one of her strategies for transcending fatigue on longer runs. On her arm, she writes a list of things on which to reflect or give thanks—one item for each mile. Says Lisa, “I really try to set aside everything else in my mind to reflect on the blessing for that mile, then the next, then the next. It helps me through the race and feeds my spirit too!” Lisa writes her list right on her arm with a sharpie, but if you’ll be running with your arms covered, you can write it on paper, cover it in press-n-seal wrap and strap it to your sleeve for easy reference.

2. Load your soundtrack for success. Music can be a powerful motivator. At Girls on the Run, we have a few favorite songs that keep our feet moving! Check out the “girl-powerful” song list with selections that many of our councils use at the celebratory Girls on the Run 5k that ends each program cycle. Women’s Running also published a November playlist of reader favorites to inspire you.

3. Get on good footing. Finding the right running shoe is important. Girls on the Run’s national partner Famous Footwear can help, with brands including Asics, Nike and other leaders. Click here to see their selection of running shoes along with detailed customer reviews on support, performance and style.

4. Beat the cold. With the cold and snow that’s affecting many areas, it's important to be safe while exercising outside. A few years ago Runner's World put together a list of cold-weather running tips that stand the test of time. Click here to review these tips before you head out to run this holiday season.  

5. Pay it forward. Not only can your running benefit your health, it can also benefit the girls in our program! When you download the Charity Miles app to your mobile device and choose Girls on the Run as your charity, each mile you run, walk or bike raises money for our program. It’s that simple.

To conclude, here’s a motivational thought a girl in our program shared with us after finishing the 5k. She said simply, “I wanted to stop. I never did.” So whether you’re running a marathon or mounting a major holiday meal (or both!), always remember that no matter the pace, big things are possible when you keep moving forward!

 Tell us about your running experience! How were you inspired? What act of kindness did you witness? Girls on the Run and our national partner Famous Footwear want to hear your personal Victory Story. Share your story for a chance to be featured on Famous Footwear’s blog.

Pamela Young


Pamela Young has more than 20 years of experience in the communications and publishing field. She has directed the editorial of a leading technology magazine, led the publishing activities of several nonprofits and currently manages the communications efforts of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Charlotte. She was the editor of Remarkable at its inception and remains a staunch fan of GOTR and of empowering girls to find and shine their limitless potential!

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