Urbanathlons are the thing to do this year…

If you’re anywhere in the vicinity of Edinburgh, Scotland on the 30th May, you may well want to participate in this urbanathlon event, an extreme 10km run, which will be more of an endurance race than a normal half-marathon:


Urbanathlons have been inspired by parkour on which we have written a few articles. The Edinburgh event will be a 10km run where  “competitors will run, wade, dangle, jump and crawl over, under and through a challenging, totally original course.”

In fact, this event is the first of 3:

Edinburgh on 30th May 2010

Dundee on 29th August 2010

Glasgow on 19th September 2010

Following the success of Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland’s Urbanathlon 10k in Edinburgh in October 2009, and the Urbanathlon events in England, the two are joining forces for a series of three exciting events across Scotland in 2010.

There are also 2 events in England: Manchester, Sunday 25th July 2010 and London on Sunday 26th September 2010.

Last October’s event in Edinburgh was a huge success and raised £40,000 for Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland, which supports people throughout Scotland affected by chest, heart and stroke illness.

The aim behind this is to get you out of your armchair and outside doing something healthy!

Not only that, but it is guaranteed to be fun.

The first race in Edinburgh takes place on a traffic-free route with spectacular views over the city and covers a range of surfaces and gradients. 10km with a mighty twist! Not only will you run 10km, you’ll have to engage your whole body in this urban-obstacle challenge.

Now if you are the classic lounge lizard or couch potato and think: “hmm, this sounds fun…, but is this for me?” then it’s worth remembering that you will certainly not be able to bootjack your body out of the chair and launch it into a series of unnatural exertions! You will have to get fit.


So, set yourself a realistic goal – if you have not participated in any physical activity or sport for a considerable time, you’ll not be in a position to be running marathons immediately. Pace yourself aiming to gradually increase participation rather than stretch yourself and burn out. Along with the acceptance of your entry into one of the urbanathlon events, the organisers will send you a running support pack which includes a sensible training plan prepared by Edinburgh Leisure which will be specific to an urbanathlon event.

As important as your fitness will be your running shoes. The correct choice of running shoes is top priority. One of the advantages of running compared to other sports is that you don’t need to buy additional specialist equipment, so spoil yourself with a good pair of shoes and preferably go to a specialised running shop to find them as they know what they are talking about and will be able to make sure that the pair you’ve chosen are right for you. Many of these shops have a running machine in situ so you can try the shoes before buying them.

Take note of this sensible advice from Urbanathlon:

  • Go to a specialist running shop. Don’t go to a general sports chain. You need an experienced shop assistant to watch you run in different models to see how they affect your running style.
  • Go during the week when the full time staff are there – they will usually be more experienced than part-time weekend staff.
  • Try the shoes. Don’t just put them on, but run up and down the street in them. If the shop will not let you run up and down the street, leave the shop.

“Don’t just think about it, Do it!”

Avoid disappointment and enter today before they are fully booked up. This will be an exhilarating day out that you will never forget. And best of all you can do it with family and friends.



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