Last Sunday June 4 was all about sports, health and good vibes in the streets of Vilnius. Thousands of participants took part in the annual We Run Vilnius event and participated in 3 categories, half marathon, 10 and 5 kilometers. Our EVS volunteer Tatiana from Slovakia represented the National LGBT* Rights Organization LGL with a rainbow flag and completed her 5 km race. This was her personal experience.
The race started at 13:00 and participants were lucky to have the beautiful sunny weather on their side. The shortest course of the event gathered impressive 2630 runners from both, Lithuania and abroad. Before the actual start, many enjoyed a collective warm-up provided by local fitness coaches, which was already being recorded by several camerapersons and a handful of drones flying around. The atmosphere was buzzing with pumped-up music and commentators warming the crowd. Without further ado, participants proudly lined up at the start line and set off to run for their lives.
Tatiana intended to keep up with her own pace and wanted to make sure the rushing crowd would not sweep her, taking her energy away from the last kilometers. “I was happy how I distributed my powers throughout the whole race and avoided any major crisis,” she said. “My strategy was to detach from the body and run with my mind. It is only about the next step.” Registered participants were required to estimate their overall time score for the whole distance and Tatiana managed to overcome her expected result. “I exceeded my personal goal and could not be happier with my participation. I am also happy I managed to represent a large number of people by running with a rainbow flag in support of the LGBT* community and their equal space in public.”
The event was perfectly coordinated by a large number of volunteers, taking care of participants, handing the sponsored gear and refreshments to them, and organizers who did not take anything for granted. Registration stands, sponsored stores, the dressing rooms and makeshift restrooms were all working well during the whole event. Participants could also take advantage of the ‘Health Tent’, where designated doctors measured and assessed individual body features, such as height, weight, fat and bones index, calculated the overall Body Mass Index (BMI), the metabolic age, or the desired percentage of all of them. The main sponsors of the event were DNB and NIKE+ plus many others. Thanks to all of them, participants were presented with starter packages full of treats, promotion coupons and a Nike + Run Club T-shirt for the first 7000 registered ones. The safety was taken care of by local police units, as well as medical staff and volunteers. Traffic was diverted from the Old Town during the whole event until 15:00. With all the construction work removed right on time, the traffic resumed without any delays.
Name of the project “Democracy and art intertwined: working towards empowered and active LGBT community and allies in Lithuania” under the Erasmus+ programme EVS (European Voluntary Service).