May 14, 2018

A Summer Challenge (for anyone who wants to join in!)

I know that it's only mid-May, but my kids reminded me that they don't have many days of school left. Can you believe that summer is approaching so quickly?!

I've done this Summer Running Checklist for the past couple of years, and I've decided to take it to the next level this year and turn it into a challenge. Also, in addition to the running list, I also added a "Summer Walking Checklist" for those that don't run. (It is nearly identical to the running list, but it is specifically worded for walkers).

This challenge is for those of you who want to run or walk through the summer, but you aren't going to be training for anything big, and you're not sure you want to do a strict schedule. You may just want to loosely follow a plan in order to get you moving through the summer.

Most importantly, exercise should be FUN! Summer is all about fun, but I used to completely dread summer runs. Michigan gets very hot and sticky (the humidity is terrible here, despite what you may think about Michigan weather). And what is more fun than challenging yourself and sharing about it with others? ;)

The object of the challenge is to complete as many of the runs on the checklist as you can. These are all items that just about anyone can do--whether you walk or run. You can go as fast or as slow as you'd like, because these workouts aren't based on speed or distance. They are just lists of things to make your walk or run a little more interesting!

To make things even more fun, I create a Facebook group just for people who want to give the challenge a try. In the group, you can post photos from your runs/walks, write about each experience, tell us about whether it was a good or bad run/walk, etc. Brag, complain, ask questions, whatever you'd like! But it's basically an accountability group for those of us who want to attempt to complete the challenge list this summer.

The challenge starts on June 21st and ends on September 22nd (from the start of summer to the end of summer). I really hope that you'll join in and follow along with others who are doing it as well!

Here is a link to the (closed) Facebook group:

Runs for Cookies Summer Run/Walk Challenge

I chose a closed group so that only other members can see what you share. You will have to request to join, so please be patient with me. I will approve you, as long as you don't look like a spam account. I'm not a fan of lurkers, either, so please take a minute to introduce yourself! ;)

I run a couple of other Facebook groups, so I will not always be around in this group--which is why I need your help to keep it interesting. Share things with each other! Make friends! Once in a while I might do a giveaway or some sort of prize for people who are actively working on the challenge as well as posting in the group. I haven't sorted out all the details yet, but I will get it worked out before we start on June 21st.

Anyway, without further ado, here are the challenge checklists (you can click on the photo to view/print the PDF):

Once you join the Facebook group (if you want to; obviously, you don't have to), then print out either your walking challenge or your running challenge sheet. Then, starting on June 21st, start working on each run/walk on the list in any order you choose.

There are a few that have to be done on certain days... there is one that has to be done ON June 21st, because it's the summer solstice--the first day of summer. If you run between 6:06 and 6:08 AM, you will have run from spring to summer! Summer officially starts at 6:07 AM ET. (This is explained on the challenge sheet.)

Like I said, do them in any order you'd like. And then if you're in the Facebook group, it would be great if you posted pictures of your completed runs! And yes, if you would like some runs to count for more than one run on the checklist, that's up to you. For example, if you take a mid-run selfie while you're doing a rainy run, you can count that as both the selfie run and the rainy run. You can basically make up your own rules! I don't know that I will count them both together, but if you want to, go right ahead.

Okay, and there you have it! I hope you are as excited as I am to knock some things off this list this summer :)


  1. I will be having a TKR Total Knee Replacement on June 12, so I probably won't be walking much, but WILL be water walking, and biking and maybe swimming, good idea to have challenges, might follow along for inspiration. I am dreading not being able to exercise....who said that ??? yeah. me...

  2. Yes! Thank you for also doing a walking challenge, I'm looking forward to being able to participate in the challenge this summer! I'm still struggling to start losing weight and I am a far way from being able to run.

  3. I am super excited to start this challenge. I had spinal cord surgery back in December, and have been officially cleared to start walking/running again. I'm anxious to get back where i was when it came to exercising and this is going to be a great start!!!

  4. Just what I am needing to find my way back to fitness. Hope it is ok to start early. Summer starts this coming weekend for my family and will be over long before September. The late Aug/Sept dates will hopefully help keep me moving though. I'm in desperate need of some motivation and determination these days. Thank you for always being such an inspiration.

  5. Yay! A friend and I got some people in our Weight Watcher group to do the checklist last summer(we just used the running list for walking) and it was so much fun. I can't wait to do it again!

  6. This looks super fun! I'm in and will request to add the group. Will also see if my daughter wants to join. I will tag her in my message so that you know who we are. We live in mid Missouri and it is also super hot here in the summer but this sounds like a tremendously fun summer bucket list for me.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. Great idea Katie! Thank you!

  8. AnonymousMay 18, 2018

    Our schools run such a weird schedule- they let out next week and go back August 8th. So I might fudge the dates a little and do this. I love that it makes the muggy summer runs more fun. I ran a half last year and stopped running so much after it. I was burned out. I need to get back into running, so thank you for the inspiration.


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