By Stefanie V.

In the running community, earning swag and supporting a cause normally don’t happen until you pay that race entry fee. A new non-profit organization is aiming to give you the perks of racing while you train.

Good Running, a Northeast Ohio-based Facebook group was established in April 2016 by local runners Kelly Chandler and Angela Pohl. The group was created to encourage running and fitness also while contributing to different charities on a month-by-month basis.

“Our participants have told us how it motivates them to post their workouts and they are inspired by seeing  other participants’ training,” Pohl says.

Facebook members earn virtual raffle tickets or “ticketless tickets” for each mile they run/walk or for 20 minutes of exercise such as yoga or skiing.

At the end of the month, tickets are randomly pulled and there are lots of prizes each month to be won,” Chandler writes. “To join, we ask that you donated to the highlighted charity of that month.”

And it’s as simple as that. Find out more about Good Running below in their Q&A with Ohio Trail Runner.

Ohio Trail Runner: What is Good Running and who can participate? 

Good Running: Good Running is a monthly mileage challenge where anyone can earn a raffle ticket for each mile ran/walked and/or 20 minutes of exercise (yoga, skiing, etc.) At the end of the month, tickets are randomly pulled and there are lots of prizes each month to be won.  To join, we ask that you donated to the highlighted charity of that month.

OTR: What is a ticketless ticket? How does someone earn it?

GR: A ticketless ticket is essentially a raffle ticket, but we aren’t writing out a physical ticket. We keep a spreadsheet and each ticketless ticket is assigned a number. We use a random number generator to pull winning “tickets.”

OTR: Where can participants need to be to participate? Any specific location?

GR: Anywhere, but some prizes may be for business/goods in Northeast Ohio. However, we’ve had people participate in many states and countries!

OTR: Why is Good Running sexy?

GR: Angela and Kelly run it.

OTR: How many people participate?

GR: Each month varies, but we had nearly 100 participants in August which was our largest month. We have a group of 3-5 “ticketeers” who log tickets.

OTR: What are some of the causes and how do you go about choosing them?

GR: April- Project Hope
May- Lake Humane Society
June- Downs Designs Dreams
July- 24 in 24 A Special Wish Cleveland
August- Back to School Supply Drive
September- Mental Health Awareness
October- Clothe A Child
November- Random Acts of Kindness
December- Food Drive

Our criteria for selecting [a charity] is just that it’s a local (to Northeast Ohio) not-for-profit. Often, we are benefiting an organization that one of our members has recommended.

OTR: What is the most you’ve raised so far?

GR: Each month is different, and we often provide the opportunity for members to volunteer in place of a financial contribution. There’s frequently an option to donate items on the NPO’s wish list too, so it’s a challenge to get a bottom line of our impact. In August, we estimated over $2,600 in school supplies were donated. Our total for 2016 would be nearing $15,000 to over 30 different local NPOs. Something unique about us is we never handle ANY of the money. All members make contributions directly to the NPOs we are supporting.

OTR: What types of prizes/donors have you received in the past?

GR: Massages, tons of gift cards, Fit Bits, running gear, classes, wine, memberships, and so much more! Every prize is donated.

Ready to earn some swag during your regular training runs? Click here for details about the January Facebook challenge.

Also, don’t forget to ‘like’ the official Good Running – Monthly Challenge Facebook page!

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