IMAGE VIA @BRUNCHRUNNING
You might know this, but running at high elevation sucks and so does hitting the trails or concrete solo. Well, you can forget about the burning in your lungs and the stitch in your side by running with one of Denver’s best local running groups.
Some of the nation’s best endurance and track & field runners call Denver home, along with a huge population of recreational runners. That means there’s a group for every level and taste. Run for a cold beer? There’s a club for that. Run to beat your marathon PR or squash that ultra 50k-er this spring? There’s a club for that too.
And they’re always looking for new members. So take the next step…
Denver Front Runners
A club for everyone — The Denver Frontrunners is an LGBT run/walk club that meets every Saturday at 9am (rain, shine, and even snow). Rendezvous in front of the Dora Moore Elementary School at 9th Avenue and Downing for an urban park run to the edge of Washington Park (six miles out-and-back). Meanwhile, the walk group takes a 3.2-mile brisk stroll around the park. The best part? Coffee, jalapeño muffin quiche, and chit chat at Buzz Café to follow.
South Denver Castle Pines Trail Runners
A group with a little more bite, this south Denver club of “Dirt Chasers” takes to the empty trails around Highlands Ranch, Littleton, and Castle Rock. The group meets every Wednesday at 530pm for a hearty three-six miles, and often on holiday breaks and weekends for up to 14 miles. Both ultra athletes and well, regular athletes, can take part.
Francois Lagueux Facebook
Have no fear, if pavement nor trail are your thing, Phidippides Track Club slides in for the save. Enjoy the zen of laps on the track every Tuesday, 545pm, at Belleview Elementary. This club is seasonal from March through October (hello, track season!), bringing together fast and, uh, not-so-fast runners alike to tap into the flow summoned by the track. It’s also a great avenue for those who aren’t sure how long their legs will take them that day. One more lap? Heck, sure.
Rocky Mountain Road Runners
You want a tribe? You got one. Just shy of 1,000 members, RMRR is the club for bubbling extroverts who thrive in large groups…but also don’t have free time for a weekly meet-up. Founded in the mid-’50s, RMRR holds monthly runs at varying locations, organized to feel like official races. Aid stations are set up throughout the courses, and the starts are staggered, so it really is like a 5K. Plus, awards. Score! Each event names the fastest female, male, walk group, and 5K-er. However, since it’s highly organized, there’s a $35 fee for the full year.
Denver Beer Company Facebook
Yes, we’re a city of beer-lovin’ pavement pounders, so there’s more than one great beer run group in the city. On Tuesday evenings from 630-730pm, city dwellers unite for a fun run around the Platte Street neighborhood, starting at Denver Beer Co. The club is full of mellow people who are looking for an active social activity, not an all-out race. Hence the free pasta dinner and locally-made beer to follow. We run together, we eat together — just as it should be.
Running with Kids | Facebook
Mothers and moms-to-be looking for a group of like-minded females to train with can join The Active Mamas and Moms-To-Be running club. On Wednesday mornings at 10am, mamas from the Front Range gather for weekly track runs at Mountain Vista High School. After a couple laps, you’re family. And these mamas have the lowdown on hiking, biking, and Zumba workouts throughout the week for all to join.
Hosted by Highlands’ boutique yoga studio, Freyja just wants to bring neighbors together in a no-cost, all-welcome, three-to-five mile run. We can namaste to that. Highland residents walk over to the Freyja studio Saturday mornings at 930am for the no-stress jaunt (non-Highlanders run too). And you can look forward to ending the run with some pigeon poses to loosen your hips. Seriously, it’s the best way to start a weekend.
Who’s up for a beer run? Rally at Joyride Brewing Company on the northwest corner of Sloan’s Lake for a mixed-level run on Wednesdays at 6pm. The short 3.1-mile track around the paved Sloan’s Lake reveals hidden swans hiding in the back corner, and stand up paddle boarders drifting on the water. When you’re all done sightseeing, finish the loop where you started for a cold one at Joyride. Oh, and first-time runners get a free beer. Hooray!