Earlier this year, Chandigarh was adjudged the city with the most number of runners in India by a famous sportswear company. We’ve always been a city of healthy citizens who step out for their daily walk, morning and evening. And the wide variety of gardens sprawling all over the city beautiful are further testimony to that. In the last few years, however, there seems to have been a sudden burst of fitness enthusiasts. The lazy lot are stepping out of their comfort zone and giving rise to a new running community in the Tricity. Here’s a look at some of the established running groups that are spearheading the athletic revolution on our homeland.
In September 2014, a handful of Chandigarhians came together with the aim of turning Chandigarh into the running capital of India by promoting a healthy, fitness-centric lifestyle. Thus was formed the first and oldest of running groups in the tricity, i.e. the Chandigarh Runners. As of today, the group has an active following of 800 fitness enthusiasts and claims to be the largest running group in the tricity. Members meet every Sunday morning for a weekly run. Each session is conducted at a new location, usually on hills and trails on the outskirts of the city. Additionally, special occasions round the year, such as Independence Day, Diwali, et al, witness the group coming together to celebrate said occasion in a healthy way. Chandigarh Runners has been actively conducting large-scale sponsored running events such as Night Runs, Reebok Sunday Runs, etc, that sees active participation of running lovers in the city. To get in touch with them, you can visit their Facebook page fb.com/chandigarhrunners01/
Chandigarh Distance Runners
Chandigarh Distance Runners, or CDR, was formed in mid-2016, with a group of about 8-10 members, with the sole aim to pass along and benefit from information regarding healthy running. Over time this group has gathered momentum and today claims to be one of the largest running groups in the tricity. With its members participating in half marathons, full marathons, and even ultra marathons, the Chandigarh Distance Runners have surely had a role to play in the overall rise of the athletic community in the Tricity. Apart from short distance running sessions, they also hold long distance running sessions every Sunday. Additionally, an intense training and endurance workout session is conducted once a week. The sole motive of this non profitable group is to promote fitness and a healthy lifestyle within all spheres of life. You can get in touch with them via their Facebook page fb.com/ChandigarhDistanceRunners01.
The Weekend Runners is a platform that believes in the power of small motivational runs that eventually contribute to a person’s long term fitness journey. In October 2016, Gangandeep, a fellow Chandigarhian, took to running on a regular basis so as to keep his health in check. By February 2017, the Weekend Runners had taken birth. Today the group boasts of approximately 20-30 active participants as part of their weekly runs, while special events receive an attendance of at least 45-50 running enthusiasts. The group gathers at a chosen spot every Wednesday and Sunday morning at 5:30am, from where the respective members can push for a 5km, 10km, or 21km run, as per their individual capabilities. Additionally, each member is expected to post their daily workout updates on the WhatsApp group in order to retain their membership. The membership itself is free of cost and open to anyone willing to be part of the initiative. To get in touch, visit their Facebook page fb.com/weekendrunnerschandigarh/
The Run Club
The Run Club was officially born in January 2016 but had been casually operating amongst the founder group of friends since July 2015. Today the group is a healthy 60 to 70 members strong and is all about spreading the joy of running in the city, while also emphasising on the need to create friends and build camaraderie within the running community. They actively hold running sessions four times a week, with the added option of evening runs for those who can’t make it to morning sessions. The choice of track differs per session, though limited to roads that remain relatively light in traffic, such as the Rose Garden Road or the Lake Road. Short treks are also organised once a week at the outskirts of the city. Additionally, the club occasionally holds charity runs, the proceeds of which go towards sponsoring a sports person who lacks the financial support or opportunities necessary to pursue their discipline. To get in touch, reach them at fb.com/runclub.trc/