When I first heard about it, I thought it would be like running from Zombies.
There were no Zombies. But there was running, lots of running.
At a race expo in February of 2014 I approached a booth with wings all over it. The volunteers in the booth told me about their race, Wings For Life World Run. There was no distance to the race. You just started to run and 30 minutes after you started the finish line would start behind you and chase you. Your race ends when the finish line, a chaser car, catches you. I decided the chaser car was probably driven by Zombies.
The race was happening simultaneously in over 35 locations across the globe. All at the same time. I was complaining about our 7am start and the guy quickly pointed out how much worse it was in Denver and Los Angeles.
Cool…but it would be better with zombies.
The guy agreed, and offered to take my entrance fee and my advice all at the same time. I paid up, went to the race which was biking distance from my house, and had a great time. There were the big TVs up showing the racers all across the globe on a live feed. I just ran until I couldn’t anymore, not for any set amount of distance, and it was just fun.
I decided then that I would do this race each and every year, but at a different location.
For 2015 we had initially planned to go to Poland to run in Poznan, but we ultimately had to cancel that trip and stay closer to home. Somehow we ended up choosing the race in Niagara Falls, Canada. We roped a couple of friends into joining us and off we went for a lovely weekend with a giant waterfall and some scheduled running.
The race itself is also interesting for yet another reason. All of the fees go to support spinal cord research. Let me repeat, all of the fees go towards research. The race itself is sponsored and run by Red Bull and some of their corporate friends. This year they told us they raised €4.2 million.
The run itself went smooth enough. I saw Niagara falls with my friend early in the morning when nobody was there hogging the views. I ran my butt of when I saw that chaser car behind me. I managed to run a little further than I ran in 2014. I met a Red Bull BMX athlete, competing a few weeks from now in the X-Games. The crisp air felt nice and we all spent the rest of the time relaxing and enjoying ourselves.
This years winners ran 79.9km (male) and 56.6km (female). I ran 14.4km. That seems a decent distance for outrunning zombies, some of them anyway.
Now the question remains, where are we going next year…and will there finally be zombies.
For more information about the Wings For Life Run, please visit: http://live.wingsforlifeworldrun.com/en