National Running Day

Young woman running with a joyful expression, wearing colorful athletic gear, urban park setting, surrounded by fellow runners..
National running day illustration

On your marks, get set, go! It’s 'National Running Day'. Yep, the internet has managed to turn the simple act of one foot in front of the other into a celebrated phenomenon. First encountered online in 2009, it has sprinted its way to internet fame ever since. Now, don't worry. No one's judging your split times or training regimen here. This day is all about tying up those laces, putting a smile on your face and setting off at your own pace!

When is Running Day?

It's national running day on the 3rd June.

Started on a Running Note

The virtual tracks of National Running Day first hit the internet ground running in 2009. It seems humanity's oldest form of exercise was in need of a fresh breath of life. Or maybe just a tasty energy gel. Who knows! This celebration of all things jogging has gathered steam faster than an Olympic sprinter. By 2015, June 3rd recorded a whopping 39932 mentions online. That's an entire medium-sized marathon field talking about it.

Finding Race Pace

The beauty of National Running Day, like running itself, is it's remarkably inclusive. It doesn't matter whether you're more tortoise than hare, or even if your preferred style of running is chasing the ice-cream truck. National Running Day is a day for beginners, Wannabe Usain Bolts, and everyone in between! Over the years, it has become a virtual running festival celebrating personal fitness, health, and the simple joy of wanting to eat an extra slice of cake guilt-free.

Not Just a One Lap Race

In typical long-distance style, the National Running Out of Breath Day (as some panting participants may know it) runs beyond its allocated 24 hours. Instead of vanishing faster than your motivation for a gym membership, it has spawned additional events around it. Virtual runs, charity fundraisers, and race discounts have become part and parcel of the day’s activities. So, even those that run like they've stolen something can give back to society.

History behind the term 'Running'

5000 BC

Ancient Beginnings

Running can be traced back to the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt. In these times, running was a means of survival and a form of transportation. Nomadic tribes and hunters would regularly run in search of food, water, and shelter. The art of running played a crucial role in their daily lives and cultural development.

776 BC

The Birth of Athletics

The ancient Greeks introduced the concept of organized sporting events with the inception of the Olympic Games in 776 BC. Running emerged as a major component of these games, and the stadium race, known as the stadion, became the centerpiece. The stadion was a sprint race stretching approximately 200 meters, exemplifying the speed and agility of the athletes.

17th Century

Running for Recreation

During the 17th century, running began to be embraced as a recreational activity. Instead of being solely associated with practical purposes, people started participating in foot races as a form of entertainment and sport. Towns and villages across Europe organized running competitions, paving the way for the development of modern track and field events.


The Emergence of Modern Olympics

In 1896, the modern Olympics were revived in Athens, Greece. This event marked a turning point for running as it became a prominent sport on a global scale. The inclusion of track and field events, including various distance races, established running as a fundamental aspect of the Olympic movement.

20th Century

Running for Fitness

With the increase in leisure time and advancements in training methods, running gained popularity as a means of improving physical fitness. The concept of jogging emerged in the early 20th century, pioneered by figures like Arthur Lydiard and Bill Bowerman. Running became accessible to the masses, encouraging individuals to pursue active lifestyles.


The Running Boom

The 1960s witnessed a running revolution, often referred to as the 'running boom.' The publication of the book 'Jogging: The Gentle Road to Good Health' by Bill Bowerman and W.E. Harris sparked a widespread interest in running for recreation and fitness. This movement paved the way for the establishment of road races, marathons, and running clubs, fostering a vibrant running community.

Did you know?

Ever wondered why June 3rd was chosen for National Running Day? No historical reason, just that it lands perfectly between spring marathons and fall cross country season, making it ideal for a midyear check-in!


awareness fun sports health fitness

First identified

22nd March 2015

Most mentioned on

3rd June 2015

Total mentions


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