Look, some people don’t like running. That is just a fact of life. Just as some people dislike peanut butter (somehow), there are those among us who would rather walk 100 miles than jog around the block.
When it comes to charity, running seems to be the fundraising option of choice. From marathons to 10k’s, it appears everyone is signing up for their charity. For non-runners who want to do a bit of good old fashioned fundraising, this can bring up a few questions: what if I can’t run it all? What if I’m last place? What if everyone is faster than me? The solution to the problem, however, is very simple: don’t do it. There are a plethora of fundraising events that are not running focussed and suit a multitude of interests. Here’s just a rundown (excuse the pun) of five such options.
Dance the Distance
Fun factor: 9 Sweat score: 9 Move of choice: The running man
As a fairly new kid on the block, you may not have heard of Dance the Distance. Advertised as ‘More fun than a run’, it should spark your interest already. It’s the new event from EMD UK and launches as part of Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life series. If you don’t fancy doing the regular 5/10km Race for Life, maybe Dance the Distance is your race.
Dance the Distance is a dance-fitness class, where attendees dance the equivalent steps of a 5km race. With moves ranging from street to disco to Bollywood and more, you’ll be hard pushed not to raise a smile or two. There’s a pretty awesome soundtrack too, belting out some classics. The bottom line is, there’s styles and songs to suit everyone. What’s more, there’s no running so what’s not to love? You don’t even really need to follow the moves accurately or stick to the beat; just move around and have fun! No first place, no last place, no lap times; just you having a boogie and raising some money for charity.
Be the first to try the brand new Race for Life Dance the Distance event at K2 Crawley on Sunday 17th September. Find out more here.
Fun factor: 8 Mud mask: 10 Laundry: never clean again
As you may have guessed by the name, your favourite workout leggings should probably stay in your wardrobe. Not to be confused with Tough Mudder, Pretty Muddy is another newbie in the Race for Life series, launching earlier this year. It’s an action-packed 5km pink obstacle course. Yep, it’s pink. From the hurdles to the water slides and every hump, jump and bump in between, the theme is pink.
Now, we’ll level with you here; there is teeny tiny element of running between the obstacles, but only if you want to. The only reason you would be running is because you’re so excited for the next obstacle (trust us, this is true. Having done Pretty Muddy in July, as a group of non-runners, we were surprised by how much running we actually did… and enjoyed).
You’ll traverse a wide range of genuinely fun and challenging obstacles, including muddy tunnels, muddy cargo nets, muddy water pools, muddy space hoppers; you see the theme yet? Your best trainers will not make the cut here. If you’re attached to any of your clothes and see you wearing them in the foreseeable future, leave them at home. Be prepared to finish looking like a spa day gone wrong.
Find out more about your upcoming mud bath here.
The World’s Biggest Coffee Morning
Fun factor: 7 Social side: 9 Mouth full of: chocolate sponge
Combining the two food groups that offices enjoy the most, this event actively involves a whole lot of cuppas and even more cake. Held annually in September, workplaces around the UK take a break, have a laugh with each other and raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support.
The premise of the event is simple; set up a table, bring in a cake and munch away. Some offices (ours included) like to take this up a level and include a Bake Off element. From volcano cakes to bug bites, chilli cheese straws to gingerbread ballet dancers, we’ve seen it all. It’s also a great way to get to know colleagues you may not ordinarily get to talk to. Pro tip: we like to split into pairs and bake one sweet and one savoury recipe per duo. Sometimes we bake to a theme, whether that be sports, types of dance, time periods: the ‘futuristic’ couple had some questionable bakes. We add in a couple of prizes but that’s optional. The important thing is everyone donates. It fosters a bit of teamwork and allows the office to be swamped with cake, which can only be a good thing.
Find out more and get the kettle on here.
The London Marathon Walk
Fun factor: 8 Breath of fresh air: 10 These boots were: made for walking
Release your inner tourist for a fraction of the price. Forget open top buses and Thames river cruises, the only way to really see the city is by foot. This 26 mile walk around the capital includes a stroll past some of London’s most historic areas. If the whole 26 is sounding like a stretch, don’t sweat it; there’s a handy 13 mile route available.
The walk starts with a hot drink and a breakfast bap; arguably the best way to start the day. Changing the route annually, the theme for this year is Cockney so expect to learn some lingo on the way round; your plates of meat will be tired after this! The route weaves through London’s rich history and passes some iconic features, including St-Mary-le-Bow; the heart of Cockney heritage. The usual suspects are also included on the walk, with Big Ben, the London Eye, Tower Bride, St Paul’s Cathedral and Buckingham Palace all popping up. Bring your camera and hit full tourist mode.
This is an open challenge, meaning you can do this as a personal challenge or choose which charity you’d like to raise some cash for. To seal the deal, you also get a packed lunch and snack / water stops along the route. After all, you gotta eat calories to burn calories.
Find more ‘about this 26 mile ball of chalk (It’s Cockney, look it up!) here.
The Big Zipper
Fun factor: 9 Adrenaline rush: 12 Feels like: Superman
If you’ve always fancied yourself as a bit of an adrenaline junkie, then you’ve met your perfect match. Meet The Big Zipper – the longest and fastest zip line in Europe. Suspended 500ft above a mountain lake in Bangor’s Penrhyn Quarry, you’ll be treated to some breath taking views as you hurtle across the landscape.
Now, when we say hurtle, we’re not messing around. Expect to reach the peak of adrenaline rush as you reach speeds of up to 100mph. You’ll be donned out in a very fetching red shell suit, like a sassy The Crystal Maze player, and taken through some various health and safety points. Hard hat, goggles and harnesses complete your outfit and off you walk to the launch site. Lying on your front, you’ll be propelled off the safety of the platform and into the unknown… well, the Welsh countryside. There are two zip lines side-by-side so you can partner up with your bestie and see who makes it down first.
Not feeling this height? We hear you; there’s a Little Zipper for anyone wanting to build up to its big brother. Or if you’re just content with the Little Zipper, that’s also fine.
Find more about your next natural high here.
Well, there we have it; a round-up of some events that you don’t need to be Mo Farah to enter. The important thing with any challenge is that you enjoy it and do it for a laugh. You can’t spell ‘fundraising’ without ‘fun’ so take the time to think about the activities you really want to try. Think it, book it, do it, and leave the running to everyone else.