Attitudes toward running range from passionate devotion to pure hatred.

But you don't have to be the next Steve Prefontaine to enjoy local road races. Don't know who Pre is?  You might be in the opposite category of, "If a bear is charging toward me, then I might actually run."  However you personally feel about the oldest sport in the world, don’t count yourself out of the great opportunity for fitness and charity that is the road race.

For the standard participant, road races involve registering for the 5K, 10K, or even marathon and training for the race.  On race day, he picks up a race packet with his bib number, t-shirt, and other goodies.  He shows up at the start line and runs with fellow comrades through the course where, upon crossing the finish line, he enjoys free bananas, pizza, and sports drinks galore.

What is often not seen is the charitable part of fun runs.  Most races are sponsored by local or corporate contributors, and funds raised from registration fees are fully or proportionately donated to charities.

Whether you consider yourself a runner or not, participating in road races can be one of the most valuable hobbies to adopt.  Running a 5K or 10K requires some training, although probably not as much as you think.  Even if you currently tally zero miles per week, you can be race day ready for a moderately paced 5K in as little as four weeks.

Hal Higdon's Training Plans
5K / 10K / Half Marathon / Marathon

Beyond the personal and physical benefits of training, a greater blessing is achieved as well.  Contributing support and funds for a worthy cause strengthens the contributor and the community.  If you sign up to race, choose an event that supports a charity you care about.  Here are three upcoming, local races with great causes.

7th Annual Tin Cup Challenge 5K/10K
Starts in City Park, Driggs, on Saturday, July 19
Join the Community Foundation of Teton Valley to support multiple non-profits all in one event.  In the past six years, the race raised nearly $6 million.  Call (208) 354-0230 or go to to learn more.

Cady Tucker Run in the Spirit/Celebrate Total Fitness 5K/5 mile/Half Marathon
Starts in Freeman Park, Idaho Falls, on Friday, August 15
“Cady Tucker was killed by a driver with uncontrolled blood sugar on August 15, 2002.  The run is a way to rechannel eternal loss into promoting the awareness of the need for fitness… for the health and well being of others.”  Call (208) 569-4157 or go to to learn more. 

8th Annual Run for the Cure 5K
Starts in Freeman Park, Idaho Falls, on Saturday, October 4
Run for the Cure 5K partners with Eastern Idaho’s Pink Ribbon Campaign and focuses on raising awareness and funds to find a cure for breast cancer. Go to to learn more.

Rachel Ewing, RD, LD
Registered Dietitian
Community Health Coordinator
Portneuf Health Care Foundation



Idaho State Journal

July 13, 2014

  • w-facebook
  • White Instagram Icon
  • Twitter Clean

A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body.

Proverbs 14:30

© 2019