Fit City: Running Races

Noa Glow | April 2012

photo: Yoree Grozenok/

Spring has sprung; now it’s time to lace up your runners and hit the road! With over a dozen races ranging in distance from 5K to 50K happening throughout the Lower Mainland this season, there’s no better time to start running than right now.

Perhaps the most popular run in the city (and certainly the largest 10K road race in Canada), the 2012 Vancouver Sun Run, taking place on April 15, promises to be bigger and better than ever before. Though its main goal is to promote health, fitness and community, the race—which last year drew nearly 50,000 participants—donates dollars to support family literacy and amateur athletics in B.C.

Also on April 15, Port Coquitlam’s Up the Creek Run—a 5K and 10K at Hyde Creek Recreation Centre—features a beautiful running route through the forest and along the Pitt River, plus fun post-run activities for the whole family.

The 2012 BMO Vancouver Marathon on May 6 will feature new point-to-point full- and half-marathon courses, which, unlike looped courses, start in one location and end in another. The reason for the change: flatter, faster races that offer more scenic routes through some of the city’s most interesting areas.

The Run for Water, happening on May 27 in Abbotsford, is dedicated to raising funds for clean-water development in underprivileged Ethiopian communities through Hope International. Featuring a marathon, half-marathon, 10K run and 5K run, this worthwhile event works closely with local schools to create awareness among students about global water issues.

June 24 marks the 2012 Scotiabank Vancouver Half-Marathon & 5K run, which provides a unique opportunity to raise funds for various worthy causes. This year, the run’s charity partners include the Alzheimer Society of BC, the BC Bereavement Helpline and Union Gospel Mission.