Love to race but fallen out of love with running? Or just trying to ease the impact on your joints after an injury? Whatever your situation, there are so many more options around if running alone just isn’t doing it for you anymore. Try adding some extra dimensions of challenge or changing-up your scenery by taking up an alternative outdoor sport.
Read our guide below to get inspired for your next steps!
Add some excitement to your runs by taking part in an obstacle race. Often involving teams of runners, obstacle races vary in intensity – from the downright silly to tough assault-course style challenges. Obstacle races call for more overall body strength, so if you’re trying to work strength training into your routine, they’re a good test of your progress.
If a normal marathon isn’t even a challenge any more – why not try an ultra? An ultra-marathon is classed as anything over the regular 42km/26mile distance and many take place across incredible scenery (see the Solang Skyultra and La Ultra). Distances vary from a more modest 60km to a downright mad 300+km – so there’s more than enough to keep you entertained.
If you’re thinking about taking up triathlons, why not try an aquathon first? An aquathon (also called ‘aquathlon’) combines a swim and a run in one continuous two-stage race. Swimming itself can open up a whole new wealth of challenges, as well as providing another outlet for regular daily exercise and it’s especially good if you’re trying to reduce regular impact on your joints.
If you’re looking for a change of scenery, you can do this quite literally by taking up kayaking. Do it on the water at the coast or inland and see places from a whole new perspective. Kayaking will use different muscle sets than you use for running –there’s much more focus on core and upper body strength – but it’s still an excellent all-over body workout, and there are a range of both leisure and race events to try.
If you no longer love running but love being a part of the running community, cycling could be for you. One of the most popular participation sports worldwide, cycling has a huge following and a varied range of clubs, events and challenges across different terrain the world over. Choose from competitive races to hill-climbs and leisure journeys: all you need is a bike.
Stand Up Paddle-boarding (SUP)
A celebrity favourite and steadily gaining popularity the world over, stand up paddle boarding involves standing on a surfboard-type board on the water and paddling with a single oar. It’s a great way to get out on the water and a good all -over body workout. Rent a board and go at your own leisurely pace, or join in to one of the many paddle race events springing up worldwide.