Whilst our gyms, group exercise classes and brilliant PTs are available all year round, in the warmer months it’s nice to get outside for a workout. When the days and evenings are warmer it’s nice to be out in the fresh air, making the most of the higher temperatures.
For that reason, why not push yourself this summer and take part in an al fresco fitness challenge? Taking place in London and elsewhere across the country, sign up for one of the fun sporting events below and step outside of your comfort zone in the upcoming months…
Tough Mudder UK
What: A five-mile overnight obstacle course
When: Sat May 13th
Where: Belvoir Castle, Leicestershire, NG32 1PE
Set in the stunning grounds of Leicestershire’s Belvoir Castle, Tough Mudder is a five mile-long obstacle course consisting of tunnels, nets, climbing walls, icy water trenches, and, of course, a whole lot of mud.
Kicking off in the evening, the event continues into the night for the next eight hours. Yes, seriously. Those who think they’re hard enough can enter as a team and fight their way to the end together, aiming to hit the top of the leaderboard with their finish time.
If you’ve already signed up for a Tough Mudder event, see our top tips for first-time participants.
What: A marathon walk at nighttime
When: Sat May 13th
Where: Starts on Clapham Common, London, SW4 9DE
See the city of London at its very best on the MoonWalk, which is a nighttime charity walk in aid of breast cancer research. The walk begins late evening and will have you wandering past some of the capital’s most beautiful and iconic landmarks along the 26.2 mile route.
Whether you opt for the full marathon walk or the half (13.1 miles), all participants are given a MoonWalk bra in advance of the night and are encouraged to walk with it decorated in as much glitter, paint, and fairy lights as possible. Though the atmosphere and dress code here is fun and light-hearted, don’t take the training too lightly. You’ll definitely need to suss out (and bandage up) those blister hotspots before setting off!
What: A series of cycling events for all abilities
When: Fri Jul 28th – Sun Jul 31st
Where: All events begin or take place in London locations
One of the biggest cycling festivals open to the public in the world, RideLondon, which first began in 2013, is a three-day event made up of eight riding events.
For pedal veterans there’s the London-Surrey 100 (a 100-mile route from the capital to leafy Surrey) and the London-Surrey 46 (a 46-mile route), which both begin at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and end back in London on The Mall. For those who love cycling at speed, taking place in Lee Valley Velo Park is the RideLondon Grand Prix, which is made up of multiple sprint races.
If you’d rather saddle up just for fun, the RideLondon FreeCycle (Sat Jul 29th) sees central London free of traffic for one day, and allows cyclists of all ages and abilities to take part in as much of or as little of an eight-mile route around the city.
What: 5k fun run ending in a paint party
When: Sun Jun 11th at Wembley Park, London and Sun Sep 23rd at Madeira Park, Brighton
Inspired originally by the Hindu festival Holi, for which people host powder paint parties in celebration of spring, the Colour Run is a family-friendly fun run where no one leaves clean shirted.
The Colour Run begins with a 5km run, which can be as leisurely or quick-paced as you like. Along the run there are five colour stations, where participants can pick up paint and decorate each other or simply bask in cloud of neon powder. At the end of the run there’s a ‘Finish Festival’ featuring live music, DJs, competitions and a lot more powder paint throwing.
Everyone who signs up for the event is sent a white t-shirt in advance, so there’s no need to worry about ruining your favourite running gear.
What: Open-water swimming racing
When: Sat Jun 24th
Where: Dorney Lake, Windsor, Berks, SL4 6QP
Held at the 2012 Olympics open-water swimming venue, Dorney Lake, Eton Swim consists of multiple clear-water races and events, which cater for a huge range of swimming abilities.
If you’re a beginner, sign up for the 750m or the 1500m sprint race, but if you’re well seasoned in the water, why not opt for the 3k event, the 5k, or even the “swimmers’ marathon”, the 10k race.
Set in a stunning location, even if you don’t decide to take part, Eton Swim is the perfect event to enjoy from the sidelines on a warm summer’s afternoon. Just be sure to show your support for those splashing away in the water.