As our Zwift Running community grows and more events fill the calendar, it can be a challenge to choose the right event, especially if you are new! Today we are going to highlight some of the most popular and the more established group events on Zwift.
Whether you are new to Zwift Run and looking to begin taking part in group runs, or you're an experienced runner looking for something different, everyone should find appealing events in this list. Let's dig in!
Run in the Park
Every Saturday morning, no matter where you are in the world, Run in the Park is a 5k group run with a great community atmosphere. Attendance is regularly high, and it is without a doubt one of the most popular running events on Zwift.
The run has been in the calendar since the beginning. It was created, and has been lovingly overseen, by long-time Zwifter and run community leader, Jon Hancock. Developed initially as an event where everyone runs together, it still has a community vibe - but some do now race the 5k distance. It’s the perfect event if you’re just looking to get a feel for group running on Zwift.
Monday Run Club
Another long-established event on Zwift, MRC has always been your ‘easy’ start to the week.
Originally created by Tim Grose, it is a workout session that keeps you in your comfort zone while still getting the heart rate up and getting the legs turning over quickly.
It is usually done as a progressive run with a few short ‘strides’ or bursts of speed thrown in.
Zwift Runners Walk/Run Intervals
The Walk/Run Intervals group is hugely popular and is a superb community event for runners of all abilities.
Held on Fridays, the event does what it says on the tin. You walk for 60 seconds, then you run for 90 seconds. Repeat until you complete 5k.
There’s lots of chat, support, and encouragement, especially from Run Leader Steph Koett.
Workout Wednesday (WOW)
Another Tim Grose event which has been on the calendar since the beginning of Zwift Run, this is a hard session, and it’s designed to be so.
Whether you run in Group A, B, C, or D, this workout should get you blowing hard by the end. Don’t shy away from this, though! If you are looking to improve your speed, you need to step out of your comfort zone every so often.
While we are on the subject of stepping out of your comfort zone, Dusk Patrol is another long-standing event that aims to work you hard!
Jordan Maddocks is a long time Zwifter who holds the dubious record of fastest marathon in a banana costume (2:41:27). If you’re up for it, Dusk Patrol gets you running hard and fast for 60 minutes every Thursday.
5k Down Under
Also on a Thursday is Ben Shepherd’s 5k Down Under, a very popular event, and not just with those in the Southern Hemisphere.
This is a very relaxed event where you run at your own pace. However, Run Leader Ben has an unfortunate habit of sharing jokes throughout the event. Be warned that you may spend much of your 5k laughing or groaning instead of concentrating on the run!
PACK Friday Fartlek
Ryan Downey is a well-liked and respected Zwift Run Leader and race organizer. He organized the very first Zwift Run Festival as well as the St. Patrick’s Day Marathon and Half Marathon Festival, and has been running PACK events for some time, including the regular Tuesday PACK Social 5k event and Friday Fartlek.
‘Fartlek’ means speed play in Swedish. Fartlek Friday takes place on the Mayfield track and consists of short bursts of fast running followed by recovery. Rather than being a set Group Workout, Ryan calls out instructions on screen which makes things more fluid and social.
Every month Zwift HQ organizes the Zwift Race Series. These events usually have different themes and consist of race distances of 5 and 10 km, and there are virtual prizes to be won.
These are races, so there is no warm-up and no expectation to stick together. You run as hard as you'd like until you cross the finish line.
These are very popular events and the start line can be very crowded. But the atmosphere is excellent, and there’s always a little pre-race banter between participants.
Fast Friday and Turn It Up Tuesday
These two events are relatively new to the Zwift calendar. Both are configured specifically to match your individual pace settings, and both are interval-type runs.
Given time we hope these events will grow and become popular additions to the Zwift calendar. If you are looking for an interval session tailored to your speed which perhaps doesn’t require the all-out effort of Wednesday Workout, then one of these events may suit you very well.
Tour Events and Run Festivals
These runs are massive and growing all the time. Distances vary from 1-mile races up to marathon distance, and, as with the ZRS races, if you complete the challenge you will be rewarded with virtual goodies like new running shoes or shirt and shorts.
Elite Hosts and Partner Events
Zwift is partnering with an increasing number of brands and elite runners, and you will often find group events hosted by some of the world's best runners and triathletes and the world's biggest brands.
These events are quite popular, with packed start lines of runners all trying to get a glimpse of a virtual Mo Farah or Gwen Jorgenson. Keep your eyes on the Zwift calendar for these branded events which can be raced or run at your own pace.
Never a Dull Moment
With races and group workouts popping up in all time zones throughout the day for new runners or experienced runners, there is never a dull moment on Zwift Run, whether you are an elite, slow, or mid-pack runner.
So lace up those shoes, throw on a footpod, and we’ll see you in Watopia!