Run The World (Girls)

Author: Miranda Eason

Last Saturday night I was out in East London. So far so normal but, instead of being in a pub/bar/restaurant as per, I was in Victoria Park about to run We Own The Night, an all-female 10k, organised by Nike. Running is something I pretty much left behind in my teenage years but We Own The Night – a celebratory, ladies-only event in its second year, with an emphasis on having fun while getting fit – captured my imagination.

I loved the idea of running with thousands of other women and that part of our entry fee supported Us Girls Starz, an initiative to help more girls around London get active. It helped that it was happening just around the corner from my house and I really wanted the Nike UK x Alex Monroe x Liberty finisher’s medal, with its three engraved discs in silver, gold and rose gold. If you want to bribe me to do something, a pretty piece of jewelry will pretty much always work.

Never one to be organised way ahead of time, when I picked up my race pack (which came in a cool Holly Fulton-designed tote bag and included a cute T-shirt to wear on the night) I was already four weeks behind the suggested training plan with less than a month to go. Over the subsequent four weeks I ran four 5ks and read Alexandra Heminsley’s funny, inspiring and informative book Running Like A Girl, which I highly recommend if you’re thinking about getting into running.

Woefully underprepared, I arrived at the event village an hour or so ahead of the 8pm start time. The atmosphere was kind of like a music festival but fuelled by coconut water instead of cider. I managed to find the friend I’d made a pact to run with and, what seemed like mere moments later, we were at the start line. And then we were off. There was no going back now. Twice around the park as night drew in. No problem!

The biggest surprise was how much fun it was. There were bands, DJs and hundreds of supporters along the route. Best support of the night came from Run Dem Crew, providing loud encouragement to get us round with a smile on our faces. The sense of achievement and happy high when we finished (in a slow-but-steady just-over one hour) was amazing. The post-run pizza from one of the food trucks on-site was the best food I’ve ever tasted. I already want to do it all again next year. I’m hooked!

Are any RMS readers runners too? Did you run We Own The Night? What’s the funnest run you’ve ever done? What races are you signed up for this year? Do share!

{3 More Fun Runs}
  • PARKRUN Every Saturday at 9am runners get together in parks around the country (and worldwide) to run 5k. It’s fun, free and a great way to meet people.
  • THE COLOR RUN Aka the happiest 5k on the planet, different coloured powder is chucked on you as you run. London, Sunderland and Brighton are sold out but you can still sign up for Manchester, Birmingham and Belfast. From June to September.
  • HUMAN RACE WOMENONLY RUN Women-only 5k, 10k and 15k run through the idyllic setting of Richmond Park on 18th October. There’s a run-with-your-buggy option for new mums.
Born in Yorkshire. Lives in East London. California girl at heart.
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15 thoughts on “Run The World (Girls)

  1. That sounds great! Might see about the October one! Me and my husband are running the Chester half marathon on Sunday!! Eeek!! Xx

    1. Wow, good luck Alex! The first ever Hackney half marathon is happening on 22nd June but I’m nowhere near ready for that kind of distance. Maybe next year! x

      1. Thanks, we have done most of our training through horrible winter months so it’s lovely now it’s lighter and warmer! Xx

  2. I wanted to do this – looked so much fun! Glad you had such a good time doing it. What a pretty medal! I always, always wanted to be a ‘runner’ – I got jealous of people pounding the streets looking happy in their own thoughts and getting a great workout too. But my fitness was awful and I couldn’t even run for the bus. So one day I just decided I was going to be a ‘runner’ – I downloaded the couch to 5k app (which is amazing, I recommend it to anyone). It sat on my phone for about 3 months. And then I read Alexandra Hemmisley’s book while sat on a sun-lounger doing nothing. Finally, I actually put some trainers on.The first few weeks were awful – I was constantly out of breathe and wondering what on earth was I doing. But then something clicked and suddenly I could run! Earlier this year I ran my first half marathon and am currently training for my first Tough Mudder. I now love running and spend my weekends running by regents canal and through victoria park, still in amazement that I actually can run. Yay for running! x

    1. Sian, congrats on the half marathon!
      Have you read any of Dean Karnazes’ books? He’s an ultramarathon running machine who gave me a bit of inspiration when I was prepping for a Race for Life a few years ago. x

    2. It was brilliant fun Sian, I highly recommend! A friend of mine raves about the couch to 5k app too, she did it after her first baby and is about to do it again after her second. After years of thinking running was for other people I’m really enjoying it – perhaps I’ll see you running by Regents Canal or in Viccy Park?! Lots of luck with your first Tough Mudder! x

  3. I only took up running a couple of months ago after I was unwittingly entered into an Insane Terrain mud running event. I felt sure I would never manage it as I hadn’t run since school, but I made it round the 5k and had an absolute blast. I’ve already signed up to do a 10k in Sept and I really want to do a colour run as well.
    Who knew running could be fun?!

    1. Insane Terrain sounds like loads of fun!

      I’ve recently converted to Tracey Anderson (obviously working with Charlotte has had a major influence) but I’m tempted to get running again after this post x

    2. Exactly, it’s how much fun I’m having that’s really surprised me, I think it’s because it’s like being a kid again, a feeling I would imagine is doubled or even tripled at an Insane Terrain event where you’re throwing yourself over obstacles and getting muddy at the same time!

  4. Miranda, your experience sounds very much like my own. I downloaded a C25K app about 10 or so weeks ago and cannot believe I’ve managed to stick with it and get to the end of the program. I am now running 3 times a week (approx 5K each time) and actually quite enjoy the experience!

    The next aim is to get a bridge to 10K app and go from there before perhaps signing up for a ‘proper’ race.

    Not entirely sure what will happen once summer is over and the nights start drawing in again and the mornings are pitch black, but will worry about that at the time. For now I’m just going to enjoy the fact that I CAN run! 🙂

    1. Hmm, yes, Emma, I think perhaps I’m a fair weather runner and will be mostly exercising in warm yoga studios during the winter months, still we’ve got a little while to go!

  5. I was there- what a great night! I have to confess post-run pizza and the gorgeous necklace were my highlights, but it was a fab experience!

    I started on C25K maybe 2 years ago at 10 stone overweight, and cannot recommend it enough! Having lost half my body weight I ran my first half marathon last year – it’s a brilliant way to get going! X

    1. It was such a great night! Haha, the necklace and thinking about what I was going to eat afterwards pretty much kept me going, especially at the halfway mark! Wow, I’m a very long way off a half marathon, but looking forward to doing more 5 and 10ks this year. x

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