It’s a call for women to gear up. To run. And to repeat history. With a record of 450 participants running together to raise awareness about breast cancer in early March, the second edition of the bi-annual Chennai Pink Run this Sunday is expected to rope in more.
“It is observed that women in Chennai are a little more conservative when compared to other metro cities. So the main motive behind the run is to encourage women to overcome their shyness and talk about breast cancer openly,” says M Rajalingam, founder, Running For a Change.
The run will commence at 5.30 am with registered participants running all the way from the Velankanni church on Elliots Beach to Fortis Malar hospital. The run will be held for two categories — 3 km and 5 km.
“The distance has been consciously shortened. This is because we are not testing who is more athletic here. We just want more women to participate. Whether they are literate or not, at the end of the run they will know that they ran for this cause. This is the first step to awareness,” he says.
Also, he says that with the short distance, it becomes easier for amateur runners to complete the distance and there is no prior training required like there is for a marathon. Nearly 250 runners were first-timers in the March run, he says.
So why pink? “Women are generally associated with pink. The logo for breast cancer is a pink ribbon. And this run is exclusively for women, so we thought to name it that way,” he says, clearly aiming to keep the women in the pink of their health. “We would also be distributing pink tee shirts for the participants along with their chest numbers,” he adds.
The whole event will be wrapped by 8 am, with ‘no long discussions and speeches’. This, according to Rajalingam, has been done so as to retain the focus on running as an activity. “When you run, you lead an active lifestyle. It helps let in fresh oxygen and also has proved to encourage people to quit smoking and boost their will power,” he says.
Those interested can register their names by logging on www.chennaipinkrun.com. The registrations are on till Saturday night 10 pm.