What is Running Up For Air?

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Running Up For Air is an endurance challenge, calling on runners to gain elevation while raising funds for the fight against air pollution. In our third edition of the European event, we’ve partnered with Strava to take the challenge to new heights—asking you to join us in racking up ascent on a run between 1- and 24-hours long. Over hills, on a ski slope, through the mountains, or up the stairs. It all counts. Together, we’re raising awareness and funds to support 18 environmental groups who are campaigning for better air quality across Europe.

Is there a fee to take part?

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There is no fee to take part, but we highly encourage donations and fundraising. All money raised through Running Up For Air will go straight to the 18 environmental groups we support.

Do I need to fundraise?

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We want to raise as much money as possible for the 18 environmental groups we’re supporting, and every Euro will help in the fight for clean air. Fundraising is not compulsory, but we’re giving everyone who takes part the option to start their own online sponsorship page. All donations made to your fundraising page will be transferred to the groups automatically, and will help them continue their vital work.

How long and how far is the event?

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For 2022, you can take part in Running Up For Air on Strava, with any run between 1- and 24-hours long. Wherever you choose to run, the aim is to accumulate as much elevation as possible, within your time. Any run with 100 meters and above of elevation, on 25 June, will qualify.

Where does it take place?

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As this is a Europe-wide endurance challenge, you can participate from anywhere within Europe.

What time does it start?

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Wherever you are, the event takes place on 25 June. You should start and end your run between 6am CEST on 25 June and 6am CEST on 26 June.

Can I take part with a team?

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You must sign up individually to take part, but we encourage you to run the challenge alongside your local trail running community. Look for your local RUFA Chapter here.

Is it safe to run for up to 24 hours?

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We can’t offer medical advice about what your body is and is not capable of. For guidance, please speak to your doctor. Whatever length you are running, remember to listen to your body and prepare wisely. This includes ensuring you have access to plenty of fluid along your route, enough food, suitable clothing, a light source and a fully charged mobile phone.

What should I wear?

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Please check your local weather forecast and dress for the conditions, with warm layers. Even on a sunny midsummer day, the higher you climb, the colder it will feel.

What should I pack in my kit?

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Trail running often takes you to places with changeable weather. We recommend you bring the following kit with you:

  • Appropriate footwear for loose or rough terrain
  • One litre of water (minimum)
  • Enough food / nutrition to sustain you 
  • First aid kit
  • Head torch with spare battery
  • Lightweight, warm layers
  • Emergency bivvy sack or blanket
  • Waterproof pants and jacket
  • Gloves
  • Hat or neck warmer
  • Fully charged mobile phone
  • Map of your intended route
  • Compass

Will I get a prize?

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Your prize is satisfaction—not only that you’ve completed a difficult challenge, but have done so to raise funds and awareness in support of the fight for clean air. Everyone who completes a qualifying Running Up For Air run will receive a digital Strava challenge badge, too.

Is there a minimum age to take part?

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Yes, you should be 18 or over on 25th June 2022 in order to participate.

How do I find my unique fundraising page?

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When you register to take part, you will create an account. Log in and hover the cursor over your name in the top right corner of the page. Now you will see the ‘Fundraising Page’ link.

You can also search for your page on the website. And your email confirmation includes the link to your page.

How can I pay my fundraising money to the groups?

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The money you raise will help groups across Europe to campaign for clean air - and for that we are hugely grateful. All donations made to your Funraisin page will be transferred to the groups automatically, so you don’t need to do anything.

How can people donate to me?

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Either share the link to your page with them or ask them to search for you on the site. Here they can quickly and easily donate to you.

Do coronavirus restrictions apply to the event?

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We have built Running Up For Air 2022 so that people can take part in a safe way. However, you should check local restrictions before taking part and comply with them on the day.

Is it a competition?

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While this event is certainly not a race, you can view the elevation leaderboard on Strava, which will be updated throughout the challenge day (25 June 2022). We also have a fundraising leaderboard on patagonia-rufa.com—because the vertical meters only count when they mean action for the environmental groups we’re supporting.

How can I share my pictures?

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When posting images to social media, please use #RUFA and (as long as your profile is open) they will be automatically displayed on the Running Up For Air site.

How do I record my run on 25 June?

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After you’ve signed up, simply complete your Strava activity on 25 June. It will then be automatically synced with the challenge and you’ll receive your challenge badge.

You can log your activity up to three days after the challenge ends.



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