Get Fit For A Cause
Inspire yourself by signing up for a race, walkathon, or other fitness charity event.

Get Fit for a Cause

Need new motivation to stay focused on fitness in the new year? Consider signing up for a charity event such as a walkathon, race, or bike ride. Training to support a cause you care about is a great way to kick your fitness into high gear while feeling good about your goal.

And no matter what your fitness level, you can find an event that works for you. There is no limit to the number of walking, running and cycling events that raise awareness or funds for community causes. Athletic prowess isn’t required — only a desire to participate. Fill out the entry form and here’s what you’ll gain:

Inspiration. When your workout benefits a cause you care about, you’ll find extra incentive to move. Plus, by joining others who have the same goal of raising awareness, fighting a disease, or raising funds for those less fortunate, you’ll make new friends and build community.

Camaraderie. Sign up with a friend or two or join a team, and you’ll have workout partners as well as others to keep you accountable. If you don’t know of a team through your work or social network, check the website for your event – often there are teams listed you can join. Pre-race training events are another good way to meet people, and some charities organize group training with expert coaching. Sharing the experience, making new friends, and encouraging each other will build bonds that last long after the race is over.

Purpose. There’s nothing like the satisfaction of finishing a sports event you’ve trained for. Add to that the achievement of raising money for a cause you believe in, and you’ve got double the benefit. Many people feel so good after completing a charity event they make the commitment to continue year after year.

If signing up for a charity event sounds like a good idea to you, here are a few coming up in the next few months.

  1. California Climate Ride: Bike California’s central coast and raise funds to fight climate change.
  2. Fight for Air Climb: This “vertical race” benefits the American Lung Association.
  3. Avenue of the Vines: This half marathon and 5K benefits the local food bank for Stanislaus County.

Melanie Haiken, Health and Fitness Expert

Melanie Haiken writes about health, wellness and fitness for national magazines and websites. She specializes in discovering and reporting the latest research on diet, nutrition, fitness, weight loss and other health-related topics. Her award-winning stories have appeared in Fitness, Shape, Health, Forbes, and other respected magazines. She also contributes health stories to numerous Kaiser Permanente newsletters and other publications.