Santa Barbara California Fun Runs

This is the time of year that every Southern California home owner loves to hate. The barrage of food-centric holidays such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve means trouble for the waistline, forcing many of us to resort to the dreaded diet and exercise-focused New Year resolution. One way to keep that waistline in check throughout the holidays is to sign up for one of Southern California’s many fun runs.

This is a great time of year to sign up for a short run, such as a 5K or 8K, because the cooler Southern California weather provides ideal training conditions. Short training runs are also a great way to help keep off the pounds while not having to devote the many hours a week it takes to train for a longer half-marathon or marathon.

Here are a few fun runs to look into to keep yourself in shape with the upcoming holidays.

Elings Terrain Festival, Santa Barbara

Many local races and fun runs benefit some type of organization, making them beneficial to runners and their communities. The Elings Terrain Festival Satruday, December 13, benefits not one, not two, but three local school programs as well as the locale in which the festival takes place. The festival is billed as a “fundracer” that raises proceeds to be divided equally among Elings Park, and the cross country programs of San Marcos, Santa Barbara and Dos Pueblos high school.

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The festival includes a 5K trail run open to all ages and skill levels as well as a 3K dog run, in which younger kids and dogs can join their adults on the beautiful Elings Park trail course. Runners will be able to celebrate their personal records and fundraising accomplishments post race with live music, food, exhibits and a 21 and older beer garden.

Hot Buttered Run, San Diego

What San Diego home owner doesn’t love a hot buttered rum drink around this time of year? Luckily, local sponsors have teamed up to host an event Sunday, December 21, that will ensure locals have earned those delicious treats. The Hot Buttered Run is a 10K run and a 1K Kids Kandy Kane race that both finish at the Barefoot Restaurant, where adults can enjoy their favorite holiday libations and the kiddos can warm up with some hot chocolate. Runners at this event really enjoy getting in to the spirit of the season, dressing up as their favorite holiday characters.

Redlands Chamber Night Light Run, Redlands

For a truly electric running experience, sign up for the Night Light Run held in downtown Redlands on December 27. This 5K run begins at 6 p.m., and is truly geared toward those who like the “fun” part of fun run. Runners deck themselves out in neon, battery-operated and glow in the dark gear for a 3.1-mile journey through the dark streets of the city. The event is by no means stuffy or exclusive, race organizer encourage runners and partiers of all ages and skill levels to come out and partake in the festivities.

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