The Surrey-based group ‘Run Like a Girl’ now has more than 131,000 fans on Facebook and is raising money for various causes with local and virtual runs.
Its newest venture, a partnered 5K, 11K, and 22K trail run The Gruesome Twosome, is at Aldergrove Regional Park this Sunday (Aug. 25) in support of local mothers in need.
Langley race director and co-founder Courtney McQueen of Run Like A Girl Adventures Inc., started the organization eight years ago with her friend Dayna Egyed.
The pair, both avid runners, created the movement to motivate women “to go outside and do great things,” McQueen emphasized.
Annually, the organization hosts two major runs including Live, Laugh, Run in Derby Reach Park in October which supports breast cancer research and Be Fearless, a popular 11K and half-marathon in Squamish, for Canadian Mental Health Association.
McQueen, a mother of a two-year-old boy, has been running trails since she was 19 years old.
For the Gruesome Twosome, McQueen wanted to design a race that inspired moms to run with their strollers, and loved ones to trek together in pairs.
“I do a lot of stroller running. My son and I did a lot on the course (with wide trails and short hills) to plan the 5K route,” McQueen admitted.
Proceeds from the partnered run will go towards Burnaby-based non-profit, BabyGoRound, which provides supplies, clothes and “everything a new mom could need,” to Lower Mainland families.
“Usually if it’s a partnered race it is relay-style, and each runner takes turns completing a lap. This run is designed for pairs to stay together the whole time,” McQueen expounded.
McQueen and Egyed completed the infamous Transalpine run – a week-long stage race that spans four European countries in 2016 – and were practically attached at the hip, venturing together for seven days straight.
“It was very difficult in ways that we didn’t think that it would be, and interesting to go through together as friends with each of us having our good and bad days. But now we’re really good friends,” McQueen remarked.
Their online and in-person running community Run Like A Girl, had extended its reach in 2013 to trips across the world, with 130 female ambassadors currently repping the cause.
“It’s grown a lot,” McQueen said enthusiastically, “women are really going outside and following their dreams.”
Gruesome Twosome’s start line is located at 27240 8 Ave in Aldergrove, and the race will begin at 8 a.m. for 22K runners, and in half-hour time slots after that, for the shorter courses. The 5K begins Sunday at 9 a.m.
Those interested in participating can register online at www.raceroster.com.