The UGM Runners’ Blog: 10 Great Tips if Uganda is Your First Race

The UGM Runners’ Blog: 10 Great Tips if Uganda is Your First Race

  Welcome to the Uganda Marathon Runners’ Blog! Our series of blogs dedicated to our participants preparing to take part in this year’s event. Every Sunday, we’ll share new tips to help in your preparations for the 7-Day adventure, from training tips to fundraising and travel advice. Written by a former participant, these blogs are all about helping our group of 2018 runners – please feel free to get in touch if you have questions or topic suggestions – we’d love to help!     So Uganda’s your first race? (Or you’d like to brush up on the basics!) No problem! Everyone has to start somewhere- whether Uganda is your first race ever or the first time you’re tackling a particular distance, here we’ll go through the basics so you’ve got them covered. When I signed up to the Uganda Marathon’s 42K in 2015, my fitness was practically zero and I knew very little about running. But before long, I really got into it and it became routine. Your body will adapt and you’ll pick it up quicker than you expect, so don’t worry if you’re literally starting out. And if you’ve got some running experience under your belt, but would like to brush up, that’s great too! Here are some tips to help, which can sometimes get missed in the midst of training. Here are 10 tips to get you started and to bear in mind over the coming weeks, whether you’re running the 10K, 21K or 42K in Uganda…   1. Break it up When I started running, I found a marathon distance pretty scary. Heck, even a 10K...
Interview with a UGM Runner – Hannah M

Interview with a UGM Runner – Hannah M

Here, we interview runners who have participated in the Uganda Marathon, so they can share their stories and experiences from the 7-Day Adventure. After all, it’s their involvement which makes the week so special, from the impact they have on the projects, to community feel they give to the race. Hannah chose to fundraise for the Charity Project, Women’s Soroptimists, by running our half marathon event, which actually turned out to be her first EVER half marathon! Below, she shares her account of the week, from staying at Athletes’ Village to visiting the Charity Project to Race Day…     1. What made you sign up for the Uganda Marathon and was it what you expected? A few of my friends had signed up and I knew some of the organisers, and it sounded like a brilliant week! I’d never been to Uganda before and had never tried to run a half marathon before, and thought, ‘Why not make Uganda my first?’ It was far more than I had expected – amazingly friendly and cheerful locals, a brilliant spirit and atmosphere in the camp, and the most amazing avocados and fresh fruit…!   2. How did you find staying at Athlete’s Village and camping in the hills of Uganda? The views from the Athletes’ Village were stunning, and the camp itself is beautiful. I was surprised by how lush and green Uganda was!   3. What project did you choose to fundraise for and why? Could you tell us about your experience with the project in Uganda? I fundraised for the Women’s Soroptimists project. Empowerment of women and girls in communities...
Interview with a UGM Runner – Ryan Langridge

Interview with a UGM Runner – Ryan Langridge

Here, we interview runners who have participated in the Uganda Marathon, so they can share their stories and experiences from the 7-Day Adventure. After all, it’s their involvement which makes the week so special, from the impact they have on the projects, to community feel they give to the race. Ryan, a careworker from the UK, joined us in Uganda to run his first ever marathon! Below he tells us about his experience of Race Day,  what it was like to run the final 500 meters(!), and how he tied in his choice of project & fundraising with his career!     1. What made you sign up for the Uganda Marathon, and was it what you expected? I signed up for the Uganda Marathon because I had never run a marathon before and sort of wanted to prove to myself that I could run the full distance. The race itself is far from what I expected (my fault guys, shouldn’t underestimate those hills!) I expected the course to be far different from the reality, including weather on the day etc. The week itself was great fun and exactly what I expected from you guys [the team] so thank you!   2. What project did you choose to fundraise for and why? What was your experience with them in Uganda? I chose to fundraise for STEP. I chose this project based on my job as a care worker at home and thought it may be a good idea to see how elderly people live in a lesser developed area of the world. I had a great experience with STEP and...
Thinking of Signing Up? Here’s 5 of Our Most Popular Questions

Thinking of Signing Up? Here’s 5 of Our Most Popular Questions

  If you’re thinking about signing up for the Uganda Marathon this year and joining us in May, you’re bound to have questions. Afterall, it’s a big undertaking: a week-long adventure in Africa, combining elements such as running, volunteering and fundraising, all to help the Uganda community and leave an amazing impact! So, to help with your deliberations on whether to sign up for this year’s event, we’ve compiled a list of some of our most frequently asked questions – questions which many of our previous runners have asked, and I wondered myself in 2015 when I went through the process of signing up. We hope they’re helpful, and should you have any other questions, feel free to contact the team – we’d love to hear from you! 🙂   #1 What’s included in the Week-long Adventure? The Adventure in Uganda is much more than a race, but a full itinerary of different activities spanning seven-days. In the short, the week can be summed up as: “A week-long festival of travel, volunteering and exploration. An opportunity to make new friends, try new foods and get to know a new culture, with a physical challenge and big party at the end.”  The week is built around opportunities to volunteer and make a difference. Specifically, you’ll get to spend a day volunteering at the Charity Project you’ve chosen to fundraise for, and therefore you’re running the race for. This gives you an opportunity to see exactly how you’re helping the community, as well as give you the chance to pitch in for a day and help by getting hands-on. The week...
Interview with a UGM Runner – Kate Westcott

Interview with a UGM Runner – Kate Westcott

  Here, we interview runners who have participated in the Uganda Marathon, so they can share their stories and experiences from the 7-Day Adventure. After all, it’s their involvement which makes the week so special, from the impact they have on the projects, to community feel they give to the race. Kate joined us for her first ever visit to Africa where she took on the challenge of the 42K event, her first trail marathon! Below, she shares her experiences of staying at Athletes’ Village, volunteering at the project ‘House of Love and Hope Uganda’, connecting with the local running club, and the big day itself, Race Day!      1. What made you sign up for the Uganda Marathon and was it what you expected? The Uganda Marathon had been on my radar for a little while. I’m always on the look-out for good volunteering opportunities and loved the idea of being able to spend time with the local community, supporting local projects and training with the local running club before taking part in a marathon together at the end of the week. I’d also been wanting for a long time to visit Africa, and this seemed to be the perfect way to travel there – staying in a village off the typical tourist track and getting a true local experience, while at the same time, helping to make a positive impact. A few of my friends had done the Uganda Marathon the previous year and spoke very highly of it. When they signed up again, along with some other first-timers, I just felt like it was a trip I had to join. Despite the...
Interview with a UGM Runner – Dayo Akinbode

Interview with a UGM Runner – Dayo Akinbode

Here, we interview runners who have participated in the Uganda Marathon, so they can share their stories and experiences from the 7-Day Adventure. After all, it’s their involvement which makes the week so special, from the impact they have on the projects, to community feel they give to the race. An experienced runner and traveller, Dayo joined us from Nigeria as part of her quest to run a marathon in as many countries as possible. Heavily focused on the race, it wasn’t until she arrived in Uganda, that she discovered the charity element of the event and volunteered at project Huridem…   1. What made you sign up for the Uganda Marathon 2017? I belong to a group of runners who are crazy enough to want to run marathons in as many countries as possible. We are called the Marathon Globetrotters and I personally put a lot of time into researching and planning the countries to run for logistic reasons. When I saw that the Kigali International Marathon and the Uganda international Marathon were 2 weeks apart and in the same geographical location, I knew I had to register for both Marathons. And that is how I got registered for the marathon, coupled with the fact that Elodie [who ran the Uganda Marathon the previous year], one of my runner friends, had good things to say about the event.   2. Was it what you expected? No, it wasn’t what I expected or rather I had no expectations. I just wanted to run a marathon in another country and tick Uganda off my list of countries to record ‘Country 27’.   3. What projects did you volunteer at...
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