Greenland is a great place to get active. Here are a few running events you can consider!
The world’s biggest island is mostly covered in ice. The summers are very short, lasting from June to the end of August. Perhaps because it is so different to my home country, Poland that I’d been dreaming of visiting Greenland for so long.
I’m a very active person so had many ideas of how to experience Greenland: from a summer trip to run an organised marathon in Nuuk, to a winter adventure up near the Arctic circle and running in the Polar Circle Marathon.
Of course, life likes to surprise us and it’s hard to plan things one year in advance.
Since making those plans I met someone who told me on our first date that “I want to go there with you” – a few months later we then decided things were going so well that we wanted to have kids – and then I got pregnant!
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Perhaps a marathon in cold temperatures wasn’t the best idea, but there was no need to give up on the idea completely. We adapted our plans to visit in October, while I could still run at four months pregnant (soon I would become immobile!). We chose two of the most accessible destinations: Kangerlussuaq and Nuuk.
Since we couldn’t take part in any organised races like the Polar Circle Marathon while being pregnant, we created the project “Fajna Zyciowka”. In English this means ‘Nice Personal Best’ and Greenland was the first country we visited to try it. We organised a 7km run in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland. The general principles of the project were:
Strong windy conditions and ‘real-feel’ temperatures of -27°C combined with deep snow, made it a challenge but all in all it was an incredible experience like no other. And while we were at it, we still had the chance to experience what Greenland had to offer.
In this country where it’s hard to grow anything at all 8 out of 12 months, the cuisine is fascinating. Meat-lovers will be delighted with the new delicacies from muskox burgers, reindeer, lamb and delicious seafood. It’s a bit harder to get fruit and vegetables, but in the bigger cities like Nuuk you can get pretty much everything.
We met lots of native Greenlanders, who gave up so much of their time to show us interesting places and to tell us about their everyday lives in such atypical conditions. They did it all selflessly, with a smile on their face and with a huge amount of kindness.
The aurora borealis – wow, I’ve got to admit this was the most magical thing I’ve ever seen! Before I came here I was convinced that the pictures of the aurora borealis were all taken with good equipment and special filters, but that’s really how the lights look – no filters, no special effects.
So what is there to do in Greenland? Oh boy, a lot, and I hope you get to discover it one day too!