Now that summer is around the corner, it’s the perfect time to sign up for a race or charity fitness event. Races aren’t only for elite athletes; anyone can participate. Registration for many summer events is open, and popular races tend to sell out quickly. The excitement of the crowds, getting out of your comfort zone and overcoming challenges can all have an inspiring impact on your fitness journey. Once you sign up, you’re more likely to follow through with your goal. It’s also a great way to travel. You can plan a trip around an event at a spot you want to visit. Or, you can participate in a race that supports a cause you’re passionate about.

Tips for Getting Started:

  1. Explore your options (e.g. 5K walks/runs, obstacle courses, bike races, triathlons of varying lengths and full or half marathons). is a great resource for finding events in your desired location.
  2. Keep your current fitness level in mind. Choose an event that’s realistic, but will push you to new heights. If you don’t currently exercise, your first race probably shouldn’t be a marathon.
  3. Decide if you want to participate in a fundraising event. Some races require a minimum fundraising amount to join; this adds an extra time commitment leading up to the event.
  4. Schedule training workouts. This will help ensure you’re prepared for the big event. Many free training resources are available online.
  5. Recruit a friend. It’s fun having a friend to participate with, plus it’s nice to have a training buddy. Or you can find a training group in your community.

“How to Find a Fitness Event That’s Right for You,” American Institute for Cancer Research Staff,, March 2, 2016.Photographed: The Asset Health Team with family and friends at the 2015 Detroit Mustache Dache to support men’s health.