Sporty island

Nature’s own outdoor gym - a challenge with natural obstacles

Blöt deltagare i Swim Run på Åland springer upp för klippa.

Choose Åland for training or competing, using water and wind to up the intensity of your workouts. It is fun and addictive to test your limits against the power of nature.

The season is long - you can train outdoors all year round. From winter sports to holiday runs, the weather and footing are the only things that vary. But, not all training has to be a struggle - it can be fun, too. We recommend Åland for outdoor training, from the crisp coolness of spring to the clear air of the autumn.

Challenge yourself with a competition

During the year, several fun runs are held, with classes ranging from elite to enthusiasts just having a go. If you love to run, the charity run Mercy Ship Race is worth a look. Your endorphin levels are sure to spike when you run for a good cause!

The classic Kanonloppet run presents a bigger challenge, with its 22 kilometres over varying terrain. You can also choose to run shorter sections or participate in the Ålandsmarschen hike, in which you walk the same course.

If your thing is crawling and running, you should absolutely take part in the Åland Swimrun, where the archipelago is the event venue. The courses pass over islands and cross open water, throwing everything from waves to slippery rocks at you. This is a real challenge, even for seasoned athletes. Fortunately, there are also classes for regular fitness enthusiasts. But, don’t let that fool you - not even the shorter, “easier” courses are as easy as they might sound.

Many appreciate the fact that sporting events are small in scale and well organised. The mood is familiar and everyone takes part. Participants of different abilities can still run the same races together thanks to the wide range of classes and distances. The possibility of combining training and running with a family holiday is also appealing. While the athletes are doing their thing, the rest can soak up the sun, go swimming and see the local sights. On pages 52 and 55, you’ll find several tips on family activities.

Discover Åland

Road cyclists call Åland the Mallorca of the North, but better! This is due to Åland’s light traffic, excellent roads and beautiful natural setting. A total of 1,100 km of public roads and over 150 kilometres of bike roads are perfect for cycle training.

On Facebook, there are several Åland groups where you can get in touch with other people interested in training in a variety of sports. They often welcome other enthusiasts to their practices and competitions. Check out, for example, Ålandscyklisterna, Åland Springer or Skidspår på Åland.

Then, take care of your aching body by loosening your muscles up in a relaxing sauna.

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