WELCOME TO BLACK GIRLS RUN!
We are so excited to have you join the MOVEment! But first, let us tell you what we’re all about! Black Girls RUN! was launched in 2009, Toni Carey and Ashley Hicks (pictured in the top photo) created Black Girls RUN! in an effort to tackle the growing obesity epidemic in the African-American community and provide encouragement and resources to both new and veteran runners.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 80 percent of African-American women are overweight. BGR! wants to create a movement to lower that percentage and subsequently lower the number of women with chronic diseases associated with an unhealthy diet and sedentary lifestyle.
Since it’s humble beginnings, Black Girls RUN! has launched more than 70 Black Girls RUN! running groups across the nation with 65,000+ members. The groups range from the most novice to the most experienced runner in hopes to educate African-American women about health and fitness and provide a support system to help them reach their goals.
GETTING STARTED WITH BLACK GIRLS RUN!
- Being a member of Black Girls RUN! is free! We sustain the groups through our BGR! merchandise and BGR! events! That way, ANYONE and EVERYONE can participate.
- Find a group located near you. For now, our groups are managed on Facebook and our website. You can view a complete list of group by on our RUNNING GROUPS tab on our website. There you can search fr your local group and connect with them via Facebook OR you can login on the website to view the calendar of scheduled runs for your group. Keep in mind, many areas are identified by a large metro market, so if you don’t see your particular city, check with the largest metro market nearest you to see if there is a run that happens in your neighborhood. FIND MY RUNNING GROUP NOW!
- Talk to your doctor! Before starting a new excerise regimen, we recommend speaking with your doctor about your decision to get active! Also, be sure to check with your doctor if you have questions about health and fitness. Black Girls RUN! is run by volunteers, not experts!
- Attending your first group run. We don’t like formalities, so it’s pretty simple to attend a group run. Once you’ve found a group near you, you will find a schedule with the group’s planned activities. Our groups are led by volunteers we call Ambassadors. These Ambassadors determine when and where group runs are held, as well as lead group runs. Sometimes runs or led by run coordinators. These ladies have also volunteered their time to lead group runs throughout the week so that there is more than one opportunity to connect with your local BGR! group and members. Once you’ve found a date, time and location that works for you, simply RSVP to attend the run and show up. Yes, it’s that simple! Be sure to say hello to the Ambassador or run coordinator on duty and let them know they are new. They will be able to provide you with specific details and instructions about the runs and answer any other questions you might have.
- What can you expect? We pride ourselves on being loud, energetic and we like to PARTY ON THE PAVEMENT! (Seriously!) Be prepared to have lots of fun! There’s no reason to worry about your fitness level, experience or time it might take you to finish a route. Most group runs are beginner friendly and we NEVER, EVER, NEVER leave anyone behind. We don’t say, “No Woman Left Behind” for nothing. Your Ambassador or run coordinator will provide the group with distance options and route directions. After everyone has shown up and received directions, the Ambassador or run coordinator will take a count of ladies to ensure everyone returns safely! Just be ready for them to bring you in at the finish. Ever heard of a cheer tunnel? Well, you will definitely learn what it is.
- Completely new to running? : No worries! Besides being fitted for running shoes (Check out this article, ” How to Buy Running Shoes” to learn more), we recommend beginners start with our “WALKB4URUN” training program. This program allows you to start from, you’ve got it, walking to completing your first 5K! Goal setting is incredibly important when starting an exercise routine, so we think this is the perfect goal to set if you are thinking about developing your passion for running. You can learn more about our WALKB4URUN program by going to www.BlackGirlsRUN.com/WalkB4URUN
- Our rules: There’s only two. We like to keep our group runs men free. (Sorry guys, it’s a chicks only zone). AND, everyone must have fun!
A few other things to note:
- When you attend a group run, be sure to dress appropriately and bring water.
- NO ADVERTISING or SOLICITING!!!! This policy pertains to Facebook and the BGR! website, as well as our meet-ups on and off the pavement. This includes personal blogs, your business or services, parties, events, and/or fundraising activities. And, no soliciting also means no soliciting for your friends. Posts that are solicitations will be deleted from the page and ladies who repeatedly violate this policy may be removed from the group and/or asked to leave the group.
- No pressure, but we would love for you to visit our online store to represent for the cause. Hey, a girl’s gotta be cute no matter what! Check out Black Girls RUN! performance tees, hoodies and outerwear at www.ILoveBGR.com.
- Nationally, we host a ton of events throughout the year including our natonally recognized race meet-ups, our Preserve the Sexy Tour, which travels across the country, and our Sweat with Your Sole Festival and Race (September 4 – 7) held annually in Atlanta. For a complete list of events, visit www.BlackGirlsRUN.com/national-events.