If you’re looking to up the ante with your fitness this year, why not try out one of these unique challenges?
After such a tumultuous 2020, it’s almost hard to believe that the new year has (finally) begun. But, while last year wasn’t always the easiest, it definitely taught us how to keep our minds and bodies active, no matter the circumstances.
Maybe you took to walking miles after work, started running 5Ks and 10Ks for the first time, or found an at-home bodyweight strength training routine that worked for you. Whatever it was you did, chances are you learned a lot about your motivation and fitness in the year just gone.
If you want to keep your momentum going in 2021, then why not mix things up a bit? Of course, it’s great to set yourself goals such as “lift a heavier weight” or “run further”, but a more unique challenge can really help to keep things fresh and interesting.
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There are plenty of challenges out there to choose from, no matter what form of exercise you prefer, from taking part in a Tough Mudder to entering the Coast To Coast challenge. Below, we’ve collated a few of the challenges available for you to enter in 2021, all of which keep government Covid guidelines in mind.
Dixons Carphone’s Race To The Stones
The award-winning Dixons Carphone’s Race To The Stones takes place in July, and sees competitors conquer 100km along the oldest path in Britain, The Ridgeway. Finishing at the iconic Avebury Stone Circle, this unique challenge provides you with the chance to learn more about the route’s history as you pass bronze age hill forts, neolithic burial chambers and Roman river crossings.
When: 10-11 July 2021
Where: The 100km route starts in Lewknor and finishes at the Avebury Stone Circle
Entry: Prices vary depending on the route you select, with entry starting at £44 (with a pledge to raise £425 for charity)
Heineken’s Race To The Castle
Heineken’s Race To The Castle is an ultra-marathon event which will see you head to Northumberland to take on a 50km or 100km trail. Walk, jog or run the epic route across moorland, winding rivers and ancient woodlands over one or two days, ending at the magnificent Bamburgh Castle.
When: 26-27 June 2021
Where: The 100km route starts at Kirkharle and finishes at Bamburgh Castle
Entry: Prices vary depending on the route you select, starting at £39 (with a pledge to raise £425 for charity)
Deloitte Ride Across Britain
If running isn’t your thing why not try out the Deloitte Ride Across Britain, which sees you spend nine days tackling the UK’s most iconic cycle route: Land’s End to John O’Groats. There’s 980 miles of stunning landscape waiting for you to explore – why not give it a try?
When: 4-12 September 2021
Where: The route starts at Land’s End in Cornwall and sees cyclists make their way to John O’Groats in Scotland
Entry: Prices start from £499 (with a pledge to raise £2,200 for charity)
Tough Mudder UK
Tough Mudder has made a name for itself with its unique obstacle challenges which promise to push you outside your comfort zone. These courses will challenge every aspect of your fitness – including your strength, stamina and agility – so they’re perfect for someone who is looking to focus on their all-around fitness.
When: Tough Mudder events take place on different dates across the country, starting from April in North London with the final one for 2021 taking place in October
Where: All across the UK throughout the year
Entry: Prices depend on the course and event you take on
Rat Race Coast To Coast
This endurance challenge will require you to run, ride and kayak 105 miles across the Scottish Highlands past the historic Cawdor Castle and legendary Loch Ness. Navigate the unforgiving terrain and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime – this challenge is truly extraordinary.
When: 11-12 September 2021
Where: The 105 mile route starts in Nairn and ends at the Isles of Glencoe
Entry: Entry fees vary depending on your team size and event choice, while prices for camping start at £340pp
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Image: Rat Race UK
As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.