Canadian Running

Colour Runs

Turn your race shirt into a canvas. The Colour Run is the latest in a growing trend of non-traditiona­l running events.

- By Christine Blanchette

A new twist to road racing brings bright colours to your face and your shirt . Picture an event where you are running and then splashed by a different colour at each kilometre. That’s exact ly what happens at The Colour Run, a unique 5k paint-run event series. Colour runners of all abilities st art each race wearing white clothing that is transforme­d like a canvas into a colourful work of art . At each kilometre, a different colour of paint powder f ills the air and covers participan­ts, creating an ever-increasing spectrum of abstract design. This unique experience is less focused on speed and more on fun with friends and family. At the finish line, The Colour Fest ival kicks off and t here’s music and several colour combinatio­ns as participan­ts start throwing paint around.

“It was clear from the beginning that The Colour Run had hidden magic,” says 34-year-old founder and ceo Travis Snyder. “The Colour Run tour has quickly blossomed i nto the largest 5k series in history.” Its motto: “The happiest 5k on the planet.”

Snyder, a former runner and triathlete, began creating his own running events 10 years ago. He wanted to establish a non-threatenin­g running environmen­t where runners of all levels could come together and enjoy the purity of the sport. “I wanted to create an event that would encourage people to get out and run just for the fun of it. I wanted people to enjoy the community experience of running together, and I wanted to add something a little out of the ordinary to the race. Something that could serve as a sort of visual reward for all the hard work these runners put into training for the event.” There’s also a large social media component with more than 1 million Facebook fans and over 42,000 Twitter followers for The Colour Run’s accounts. “It’s about fitness and living a healthy lifestyle, but it’s also about sharing that experience with friends,” says Snyder.

The first series began two years ago in the U.S. with 50 events. The Colour Run has now expanded to more than 100 events around the world, including races in Windsor, Ont., on July 20 and Montreal on Aug. 17.

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