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Why Costumes Make Running Even More Awesome

One can quickly realize, that we runners are kind of crazy people in more than one way. For example, we love to make up “reasons” for which we absolutely need to go out and run.

“OMG, it is the shortest night of the year, we have to run through it!”

Or something like

Why Costumes Make Running Even More Awesome

“This is the first time we have snow this year, let’s go out for a quick run.”

Or maybe

“It is 12/12/12, we have to have a 12k run from 12:12,” etc. I think You know what I am talking about. We (local running friends) have actually done the first two; here is a collage of us when we ran in relay with a torch from sunset through the longest night until sunrise.

In this post, however, another type of runner-craziness is discussed: when we dress up for a run.  If you have ever been to a major running event, I bet you have seen people running in costumes. I nearly bumped into Son Goku when I kicked of my first marathon run.

Costume Runs

These guys are amazing, and make these events much more fun. But my focus is now on events that require dress up. I am not 100% sure, whether costumes are the excuse for running or the other way around. Probably a little bit of both. Anyway, one thing is sure, these events are a lot of fun, so I am about to share 3 events from my history with you, starting with the smallest one.

The Halloween Run at the University of Pannonia, Veszprém, Hungary

Well, the title says it all; university students dress up in various crazy costumes on Halloween night and do a small run around the campus. The best costume is rewarded.

Costume Run


Classic Balboa run

For the third time now, the community of trail runners in Hungary have organized a Classic Balboa run in February. The track is based on the distance between the house of Rocky and the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, thus it is around 19km with 800m of elevation mostly on forest trails. The “climax” of the run is at halfway, when we climb the steps of the Erzsébet sightseeing tower, and wave our hands in the air just like Rocky did.

Costume Run

Oh, and I nearly forgot to mention, everybody is dressed up as Rocky Balboa, with gray hoodies, black gloves & cap, etc. I don’t have the data for this year, but if I recall correctly, around 800 of us went on a run in Balboa clothing last year. It is not a competition, absolutely free to enter, and refreshments are brought by the participants.

Costume Run

An additional fun factor of the event is, that our beloved (retired) boxing champion, István Kovács, alias Koko, is also a regular participant. For me, personally, one of the best moments was, when we were struggling to climb up on a steep road, and He just said “Keep it up guys, You are doing great!” to us. It was simply priceless.

Mikulás (Santa) run in Budapest

Before going into details, you have to know, that in Hungary, Christmas presents are brought by Jézuska (the young Jesus Christ) and the angels. Mikulás is a similar character to Santa Claus, originating from Saint Nicholas who brings presents on the 6th of December. It has to be said, however, that due to American influence (mainly Hollywood movies), the two characters are under kind of a merge. Anyway, last year on Mikulás day, a Santa run was organized by BSI for the first time in our country. Roughly 2700 runners—from the really small ones  to those who didn’t need an artificial Santa beard—came together to run that 2.7 km distance in our Capital, Budapest. The pictures tell it all 🙂

Costume Run

Costume Run

Have you ever run a costume on a run? Do you have any costume runs planned?

Máté Hegyháti

About the author:
Máté Hegyháti

I am a PhD student in IT at the University of Pannonia from Veszprem, Hungary. Next to teaching, supervising talented students, I also manage the university orchestra, and organize group runnings for local people, mainly university students. I wouldn't say I am a runner, but I like to run, just as I like to hike, cycle or roller skate :-). If I had to choose, I'd say, I am a hiker, even though I'm running more.