Rice Survivor to 5K

Rice Survivor to 5K is a free 10-week run/walk training program for 10 adult cancer survivors and 20 volunteers. Volunteers run/walk with survivors during practices and work toward completing a 5K race.

2018 Rice Survivor to 5K Team

Rice Survivor to 5K consists of three components:
  1. Practice – two weekly practices to be held on weekday evenings at Rice University
  2. 5K Race – a community 5K race to take place at the end of the training period
  3. Awards Ceremony – a celebration the evening of the race, for families, funders, and potential future participants
**Currently the Spring 2018 program has concluded. Please fill out the form below to be notified about future programs.**

Thanks to early detection, prevention programs, and excellent treatment and follow-up care, more people than ever before are surviving cancer. However, survivorship can leave a host of problems in its wake. Like many challenges that come after a crisis, these are not immediately obvious to outsiders. Even after treatment finishes, physical, emotional, and financial hardships can persist for years. Cancer survivors are also at a greater risk of developing second cancers and other health conditions, leading to a significant uncertainty of the future. Specific challenges often faced by cancer survivors include difficulty finding jobs, economic burdens of costly treatments, and denial of health insurance or life insurance. In addition to logistical problems, emotional burdens including strained relationships and a fear of recurrence may pervade a survivor’s life. Exercise has been shown to reduce symptoms and improve physical functioning and quality of life in cancer survivors, as well as decrease their risk for cancer-related death. 

        Why participate?
Nearly everyone is affected by cancer or will be at some point in our lives. This is a great opportunity to volunteer while achieving fitness goals at the same time. Beginner runners can jump-start a passion for running that will lead to a healthier lifestyle, survivors can see an improvement in their physical and emotional well-being, and experienced runners (survivors & volunteers alike) can improve their running.
        What are the dates of the program?
The Spring 2018 program has concluded. Please fill out the form above to be notified about future programs.

How far is a 5K? 
A 5K is five kilometers, which is just over 3.1 miles. Completing a race of this distance is well within the reach of beginner runners.

What will the training be like? 
Each runner will be given a custom plan tailored to their abilities and goals, which can be altered over the course of the season as needed. The plan will consist of three workouts per week, two of which we will do as a team and one of which you'll do on your own. Workouts will take between 30 minutes and an hour depending on your starting ability. On Mondays, we'll practice at the Rice running track to work on our speed. On Wednesdays, we'll run the outer loop of Rice (the running trail) to work on our endurance. You'll do your third run/walk of the week on Friday or Saturday.

What kind of starting fitness do you need to have to participate?
None! We will begin and end each workout together, but the majority of the workout will be done at your own speed. Participants from those who can't run a mile to those who already run fast 5Ks will benefit from this program.

What are the requirements and benefits?
Survivor Requirements:
  • Have received a diagnosis of cancer at any point in time (currently undergoing treatment is fine as long as doctor clears it)
  • Rice affiliation not required
  • Obtain written clearance from your doctor to participate in this athletic program
Survivor Benefits:
  • New running shoes
  • A motivating and compassionate group to support you on your journey to restoring physical wellness
  • A training plan
  • Race registration
  • Program T-shirt and water bottle
Volunteer Sherpa Requirements:
  • Any physical fitness status -- beginners to running are encouraged!
  • Dedication to completing the program
  • Willingness to set your own goals aside in favor of helping survivors when necessary
  • Compassion and patience; desire to volunteer
 Volunteer Sherpa Benefits:
  • Race registration
  • Program T-shirt, Program water bottle
  • A physically and emotionally rewarding volunteer experience
Many thanks to the program's current sponsors:
  • Student Activities President's Programming Fund
  • GSA Community Service Grant
  • Rich Family Endowment
  • Jennifer and Purvez Captain
  • GameTime Hydration
  • Colorectal Cancer Alliance
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Please email rice.university.cycling@gmail.com with any questions.