Everything You Need to Know to Rock Your First Color Run

3 years ago

Are you thinking of doing a Color Run? Great! Regardless of whether you’re a veteran runner or a newbie to the 5K game, this is going to be a fun run for you!

I did my first Color Run a few weeks ago, and it was amazing. As an advocate of fun 5Ks, I would definitely recommend the Run or Dye race that I ran, or any other similar Color Run near you for a good time!

In an effort to help you rock your first Color Run, I’ve put together a few tips based on my experience. Hindsight is 20/20 after all, and I’m still finding dye around my house to this day! Hopefully you can keep these little cheats in mind and make the most out of this milestone race!

It’s Meant to Be Fun

This means you’re encouraged to dress up, wear tutus or other “swag,” and come with friends! In fact, bring everyone – your kids, friends and family, dogs even. No one is taking themselves too seriously here or racing to set any world records. Go at your own pace and have fun along the way!

Exhibit A: Unicorn Sock Swag

Bring Water

I was wondering what I would do about water. Run or Dye supplied us with a backpack that I thought we would check, but we ended up carrying it throughout the run and switching up backpack duties. It wasn’t bad since we weren’t running too fast (more like a steady jog), and it came in handy when it came time to store our phones as well.

You’re Going to Want Your Phone

Speaking of phones, you’re going to want yours, or some other picture-taking device. Half the fun of the race is capturing how silly you look, and getting great before and after pictures! Make sure to keep your phone/camera in some sort of protective wrap (Ziploc, etc.) and have it tucked away when you’re running through the dye stations.



Keep Your Mouth Shut

Not all the time, just when running through the dye stations! I learned this the hard way, since in my excitement I was smiling and laughing and ended up getting a mouthful of blue dye. I was spitting blue for the first mile of the race, as appealing of an image as that is.

Do Not Buy New Clothes for This

Don’t bother getting new shoes, shorts, or any other gear for this. Everything you have will be covered in dye. While my black workout pants were salvageable, the white socks and shirt most certainly were not. Something to keep in mind! Oh, and crevices of my black sneakers still have pink dye hidden in them.

The Dye is Going to Get Everywhere

And I do mean everywhere. All over everything. Be prepared for that.

The Dye is Going to Stick Around

You may look like a creature from The Fifth Element for a day or two while the blue/pink dye wears off your forehead. Make sure you do your run on a Saturday morning and scrub vigorously after!

Bring Towels for Your Car

I cannot stress this point enough. My previously tan seat belts are now a tie dyed rainbow color. I mean, I can dig it, but I’m not so sure it’ll be a plus come resale time. Bring towels for your car and cover everything.

The Early Bird Gets the Worm

It may seem daunting to get up early on a Saturday morning, but the earlier you go, the better the afterparty will be! They give away all the good stuff early, including extra dye packs, not to mention that the crowd dies down as the day progresses. And you definitely want to make the most of the afterparty after successfully completing your first Color Run!

Get a Good Deal

There are always links on Groupon or Living Social for Color Runs and other fun 5Ks. I did mine for only $19! Make sure you’re not overpaying if you don’t have to, and check out these sites first for great local deals.


You did it! You completed your first Color Run! Take a ton of photos, bask in your post 5K glory, and start planning your next fun 5K!




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