When we got the chance to come along to The Color Run in Manchester we jumped at the chance, being named the 'Happiest 5k' - who wouldn't want a chance to participate?! This is the first event of it's kind we have attended so we were a little unsure what to expect, but after we spent the day with them I can assure you it lived up to its fantastic reputation
About The Color Run
It's a 5k running event which is aimed less about getting a good time and more about celebrating happiness and healthiness. It’s one of the largest series on the planet attracting more than 2million runners in 2014, who took part in over 300 events in 50+ countries. The idea is to use the paint packs provided to throw colour over friends before, during and after the race. If your free white T-Shirt isn’t colourful enough from that you will also run through 5 different colour dyeing stations on the course, the volunteers will be more than happy to create a cloud of colour for you to run through!
There are 6 events throughout the year, unfortunatly youve already missed the London and Manchester events but don't worry, you can still attend these;
- Birmingham - 15th August
- Belfast - 30th August 2015
- Sunderland - 20th September 2015
- Brighton - 10th October 2015
If you fancy something a bit different they have also introduced 'The Color Run Night' in London, it has the same concept but as its held at night the paint will glow in the dark. After attending the day event we think this will be spectacular, just imagine all the different colours being thrown up against the night sky lighting it up.
On the Day
Held at the Ethiad staduim the venue was quite easy to find however the parking wasnt very well signposted, we followed the mass of cars heading into what we thought was the car park before realising everyone was turning around. The volentueer was obviously geared up for this and was very good in explaining where we had to go (she had plenty of practice!). On our way to the correct car park we still didnt see any signposts which we were expecting to see but still came across the car park with relative ease. After paying the £5 parking charge we got out of the car and could already feel the buzz in the air, whilst walking towards the start line we saw people in every colour of tutu you could imagine along with a stream of white Color Run tshirts with people in really high spirits. We headed past the gowing crowed to the media tent and collected our race packs which contained a white Colour Run t-shirt, 3 x Colour Packs, Runners Number and some extra goodies.
Given the name 'The Happiest 5k on the Planet' we were expecting a good atmosphere and 95-106 Captal FM team started getting everyone in the mood by playing games, doing a few warmups and taking selfies from the stage. There was already a big crowd but people kept pouring in, by the time the race started thousands and thousands of people armed with paint packs swarmed the area...some were so excited they started thowing paint over each other before they had even started!
Our two very willing UK Fitness Events team members put on their newly aquired Colour Run t-shirt's, headband's and the funky sun glasses to head over to the warmup area, lost in the sea of color runners they began the warmup as the whole crowd started what looked like synronised jumping, stretching and jogging on the spot to the music. Once limbered up it was time to go to the star line, however quite lot of people seemed to have that idea before us! We were stuck in a quite a big queue to even get to the start line but after about 20mins of shuffling forward as waves of runners were let loose on the course we were at the start line. Someone was motivating the people in each wave by throwing out more paint packs and goodies and getting everyone to shout as loud as they could before the countdown started and off they went.
If having your colour packs to throw over family and friends wasnt enough there were also some very willing volunteers to help, stationed just past a big inflatable arch at every kilometer of the course, these lovely people grabbed handfulls of paint and threw it at the passing runners. Im quite sure they enjoyed it far too much but then again it does sound like a good role to have! Some people shouted to have paint thrown at them as they passed through the colour zones and the volentueers were happy to do so, creating gigantic colour clouds as they did.
Normally when you complete a race you will have a laugh with your friends on the way home, talking about the best parts...…but hold your horses, these guys will throw you a gigantic ‘Colour Festival’ as an after party! Blasting out some of the best tunes and throwing out yet MORE colour packs, things get a little crazy with explosions of colour coming from everywhere in the crowd. The DJ then gears everyone up for one big colour throw where everyone in the crowd throws their paint up, filling the air with colour whilst everyone is dancing to the music.
Our final thoughts
If you are looking for a fun challenge where you can really let loose and enjoy yourself whilst doing some excercise we would highly recommend this event. Even if you are not into running, The Color Run focuses on happiness so you can relax knowing that you can take your time going around the 5k course. It’s a great day out with friends and you’ll leave with some amazing memories….and covered head to toe in paint!