The pain of a 7am alarm on a weekend was quickly subdued on Sunday as soon as I arrived at Strand by the orthodox mix of a dinosaur mascot pumping up freezing cold runners, folks using cardboard picture cut-outs for their instagram under the vibe of a “who gave their Dad the aux?” playlist, giving me the initial sense that it would be a cheesy affair- but this was not to be the case. Just 25 minutes after I arrived, a whole half hour before the race was to begin, the outside of the King’s Building was already packed with runners in good spirits for the 5km, 10km and ‘colour’ runs and with the queue to be registered always busy.
This was the 5th ever Kings Run, and considerably the largest so far, with an estimated 430 runners taking part (much more than the organisers were expecting), with roughly 230 evenly split over the 5km and 10km distances and the colour run being the most popular with some 200 runners. Not only was the number of participants pleasing to see, but also the diversity of the runners themselves; ranging from a few more senior runners as well as a strong contingent of first years.
One consistent trend emerged when talking to the runners – which was that everyone was in it for the fun. One such first year had just recovered from running a marathon 2 weeks prior and ideally would be recuperating for football duties, but didn’t want to miss the occasion. Another first year had been travelling for the last 3 weeks and thus had to catch up on (a hefty amount) of work during the afternoon but similarly didn’t want to miss the run. Perhaps the most interesting runner of the day was one who’d never ran a 10km distance before, and who kept up with the leading pack for the opening 4 and a half miles and only finished 2 minutes behind the front group.
This also wasn’t just a spectacle for KCL to revel in, with plenty of tourists taking photos along the Embankment of runners in colour-soaked clothes and faces during the race. It was the aftermath of the race that was the most impressionable, in contrast to the start where some runners were in ‘the zone’, AirPods locked in; the area behind the finish line after the race was full of runners socialising and taking photos with smiling faces.
A huge amount of credit must go to all involved in the event- the organisers in King’s Sport, pivotal to the logistics and running of the event, RAG, as well as the runners themselves, without which the event would’ve been nothing. This is the largest event during the year where RAG cooperate with King’s Sport- and their commitment to this event was paramount with the majority of their 13 committee members coming along. Overall, it’s estimated that around £2000 was raised for their 3 charities as a result of the event (to be split evenly between Afghanaid, The Children Society and Medical Engineering Resource Unit). Do continue to support these causes by going to other events of theirs, such as the Stricly Come Dancing Soc in November.
Finally, further congratulations are due to King’s Sport, who will do another one of these in March 2020. The number of participants is only rising, with plenty of spots for additional runners. Hopefully it’ll be less cold.

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