Running with the “Cães D’ Avenida” – Discovering Porto’s Running Community
Running crews are a worldwide phenomenon and offer an opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals from all walks of life who share the same passion for running. If you want a great way to stay active, make friends, and explore new places, joining a running crew might be the perfect solution. In this article, we will introduce you to the “Cães D’ Avenida”, a running crew based in the beautiful city of Porto, Portugal, and give you an insight into the local running community.
The Beginning of “Cães D’ Avenida”
The running crew “Cães D’ Avenida” was born informally in 2011 when friends and acquaintances decided to start doing group training on the Avenida do Brasil. This seaside avenue facing the Atlantic Ocean soon became the perfect meeting point for the growing number of amateur athletes who wanted to run together. In 2013, the sports association “Cães D’ Avenida” was founded, counting over 180 founding members, and has been going strong ever since.
Running After Dogs – Cães D’ Avenida
The name of the running crew, “Cães D’ Avenida”, comes from a joke made by the founder João, aka “Pidas”. He teased the idea of running after the dogs that walked with their owners on the avenue, making fun of the runners’ enthusiasm. But this inside joke stuck and became the crew’s name; the rest is history. The running crew is now managed by Carlos, João, Francisco, and Miguel, who continue to foster the spirit of friendship and mutual support that characterizes this crew.
Training and Activities
The crew consists mainly of local runners from Porto, and their ages range from 30 to 60 years old. They love running as amateurs but take races seriously, always trying to push each other to achieve collective success in an individual sport. The crew meets monthly for their “Mensalão” training session, usually on a Saturday morning, where they run a 10K distance in different groups. The training is held in front of the Foz tennis court on the second Saturday of the month at 9:30 am. The training session is open to all, and the runners can choose from different groups with different paces, so there is something for everyone.
A Running Tribute to Pidas
In 2015, “Cães D’ Avenida” lost its crew founder “Pidas,” who was the team’s soul and unifying force. In 2017, as a tribute to all athletes, family, and friends, they created and organized an amateur 10Km race once a year (in September) open to the entire community in Foz do Douro, on the Brazil avenue where they run so much, and that everyone knows so well. The 10 km running race is called “Corrida Pidas”. This family race is open to all, and children have the opportunity to participate.
In A Nutshell: Cães D’ Avenida
The Cães D’ Avenida running crew is an inspiring example of how a simple idea and a group of friends can create a community of runners that promotes friendship, mutual help, and a love for running. Their monthly training sessions, the “Mensalão,” and their amateur 10 km race, the “Corrida Pidas,” have become important events in the running scene of Porto. Running crews like the Cães D’ Avenida are a testament to the power of running in bringing people together and fostering a sense of community. Porto is a beautiful city that offers plenty of opportunities for running. With its vibrant running scene, it is the perfect destination for runners worldwide who want to experience the joy of running with like-minded people.
Running in Porto
Porto is a beautiful northern Portugal city famous for its historical centre, beautiful river, and bridges. The city is also an excellent place for running, with its diverse landscape of hills, coast, and riverfront, making it perfect for runners who want to explore new routes. If you are a runner, you will not be disappointed with the endless possibilities of exploring the city on foot.
Discover the Diversity of Porto’s Landscape
Porto is a must-see in Portugal for its rich history, beautiful architecture, and fascinating culture. Its streets are lined with colourful buildings, historic landmarks, and picturesque alleyways that transport you back in time. But beyond its stunning landmarks and cultural heritage, Porto is a city that caters to runners and fitness enthusiasts alike.
The city’s terrain offers diverse running routes, from hills and valleys to the coast and riverfront, making it an ideal location for runners of all levels. With so many different routes to explore, you’ll never run out of options. For those seeking a challenge, the city’s hilly terrain offers a great workout, with the added bonus of incredible city views. The flat areas along the riverfront provide an easy and scenic option for those looking for a more relaxed run.
From the Hills to the Coast: A Runner’s Paradise
One of the most popular running routes in the city is along the banks of the Douro River, where runners can take in the beautiful views of the water and the historic Ribeira district. Another great route is the Foz do Douro, a coastal area with a long promenade alongside the beach, offering stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. The Parque da Cidade is an excellent option for those looking for a more challenging route, with its many trails and hills that wind through lush greenery.
In addition to the city’s natural beauty, Porto has several parks and gardens that offer great options for running. The Serralves Gardens, for example, is a perfect spot for a relaxing run, with its well-maintained trails and beautiful greenery.
Running Events in Porto
Porto is known for its love of running and hosts several running events throughout the year that attract runners from all over the world. Two of the most famous events are the Maratona do Porto (Porto Marathon) and the Meia-Maratona do Porto (Porto Half Marathon), which occur annually in November, making it an ideal time to visit the city.
The Porto Marathon is a challenging and competitive race that takes runners on a scenic journey through the city’s streets, showcasing several iconic landmarks such as the Ribeira neighbourhood, the Arrábida bridge, and the Douro River. The race is well-organized, and the route is marked with aid stations offering runners water, energy drinks, and snacks. The marathon attracts professional and amateur runners, with a diverse mix of participants worldwide, making it a truly international event.
On the other hand, the Porto Half Marathon is a shorter and more accessible race in September that is perfect for runners of all levels. The race starts and finishes at the Douro riverfront, making it an excellent opportunity to explore the city’s charming riverbanks. The half marathon also offers stunning views of the city, and the route passes by several landmarks such as the Porto City Park.