Adding Fun to Your Run

From color runs to zombie chases and scavenger hunts, social running events offer new and experienced runners alike unique and entertaining ways to have fun while staying in shape.

Not long ago, organized racing belonged to competitive runners. Now a variety of fun runs and adventure races offer novice runners the chance to compete in a friendly, social environment. So whether you are a hardcore runner looking to break up your routine or have never run a mile in your life, here are four reasons to try a themed run this summer:
     Take the fear out of running. If you are new to running, a social 5K offers a less intimidating introduction to the sport. Many races are untimed, so you can focus on fun instead of speed.
     “We see people go from doing one little fun race to three or four a year…to eventually doing a half marathon,” says Mallory Jones-Fiske, race director at Mellew Productions Inc., which organizes the Jalapeño Half and more than a dozen races in North Texas.
     Find a reason to run. Themed runs cover almost every interest imaginable from warrior dashes to nighttime glow runs. Do you like to dress up, get dirty or solve puzzles? There’s a run for that.
    Make running a team event. Gone are the days of having to lace up your sneakers for a solo run. Several events encourage team sign-ups so you can compete together with friends or family.
     “It’s all team driven,” explains Jones-Fiske. “It’s a chance to get a bunch of really cool pictures together, have a good time, listen to some music and have a beer.”
     Enjoy running again. If your running routine has become stale, a themed race is the perfect way to remind yourself how enjoyable it can be. Fun runs not only offer distractions along the course, but also post-race entertainment in the form of live music, beer gardens and family activities.
     Running may be good for you, but there’s no reason you can’t also have a good time doing it. You may even catch yourself looking forward to your next race. | by Jessica Llanes |





Happening This Month

Joe’s Run (,
June 7, Panther Island Pavilion, Fort Worth
This “parrot-dise” 5/10K encourages runners to wear their tropical shirts, leis and most colorful sneakers, and includes a Jimmy Buffet tribute band at the finish line.

Dash N Splash 
June 7, River Legacy Park, Arlington
These family-friendly ½ mile and 5K races arm runners with super soakers, and the post-race party includes music, food and libations.

Flexin’ Texan Color Dash 5K

June 7, Justin Community Park, Justin
This color run is free for kids under 6 with a bounce house, games and rodeo at
the finish line.

Merrell Down & Dirty Obstacle Race
, June 9, Cedar Hill State Park, Cedar Hill
The 5/10K courses include mud pits, marine hurdles, rock walls, tunnels, water crossings and more; perfect for runners and CrossFit enthusiasts.

Electric Zombie Run (,
June 13, Community Beer Company, Dallas
Survivors of this nighttime zombie 5K get a glow-in-the-dark medal and can participate in costume and brain eating contests at the finish line.

Rock n Glow 5K (, June 14, QuikTrip Park, Grand Prairie
Runners and walkers put on their best glow-in-the-dark apparel to run a course filled with colored lights and dance music, then celebrate in the finish-line beer garden.

Jalapeño Half Marathon & 5K
June 28, Panther Island Pavilion,
Fort Worth
In addition to new 5K and half marathon courses, this event includes a jalapeño eating contest, tubing at Panther Island and beers from Rabbit Hole Brewery.