The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter. Before you know it spring will be here and you’ll want to be looking your best when you start to take off those layers of clothes and expose that pale skin to sunshine.

Too much lying on the sofa eating pizza makes you fat. So what are you going to do to prepare yourself for the summer?

Everybody needs a challenge in their life. So what about this?

The Great Manchester Run returns to the city’s streets on 24th May and it looks like being its biggest year yet. The event will celebrate its 17th anniversary this year, offering the greatest atmosphere, the greatest experience and the greatest course for anyone taking part. 

The Great Manchester Run returns to shut down the city this May I Love Manchester

The organisers are promising an entertainment-packed run, whether you’re running the half marathon or 10k.

10k may seem a long way, but it’s actually only just over six miles in old money. 

If you haven’t done much running before, you’re probably thinking: “how the heck do I prepare myself for such a thing?”. 

Well fear not, because the Great Run team have uploaded their very own training programme for both the 10k run and half marathon to their website, for newbies to prepare and more experienced runners to push themselves further. 

If you start preparing soon, you’ll be ready to run by the big day.

The Great Manchester Run returns to shut down the city this May I Love Manchester

The run is the perfect opportunity to meet new people and bond over the experience. Maybe you shared a bottle of water? Now you’re going to be sharing a bottle of wine over dinner next week. And with the streets along the track closed down for most of the day, you’ll feel like true royalty. Now that’s a confidence boost if we ever heard one. 

The run will begin at Portland Street and finishes on Deansgate. With iconic entertainment and cheer zones located at every kilometre of the track, there won’t be one minute without support from your fellow Mancunians. 

And don’t worry if you find you can’t make it to the finish line. Running is not a requirement. You can jog, walk, jump or crawl to the finish line, all in the name of your chosen charity

The Great Manchester Run returns to shut down the city this May I Love Manchester

You’ll be joined by 30,000 other runners in all shapes and sizes from the superfit to the occasional jogger and cheered on by thousands of spectators.

And when you do make it to the finish line and get your finisher’s medal, you’ll have a great sense of achievement and you’ll know you’ve raised much needed funds for your favourite charity.

Take your phone, your camera, your selfie stick with you. Whether you document the whole thing or focus on running, chances are you’ll see bits of the city you’ve never noticed before.

So why not give it a go. Do it for charity and do it for yourself. You deserve it. 

P.S. The run will be covered by the BBC from 12pm, so this may be your big chance to get your sweaty face on the telly, too.

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