Night Terrors Run Crew (NTRC) was founded by Aimee Laurel in Toronto in the spring of 2013, with the group meeting at Trinity Bellwoods Park’s Strachan Gates. NTRC’s Toronto chapter is now co-led by William Chaupiz and Sula Larochelle.
NTRC started as a small group of individuals who saw the night as an opportunity—an opportunity to see the city, to spread community, to meet people and to find ourselves through running.
Our mission then, as now, was to encourage a healthy lifestyle and provide free fitness offerings while growing the urban running culture in our community. By providing group runs at night, NTRC offers runners of all abilities an outlet to be active, social and to feel safe running outside after late working hours or other obligations. Over time, we’ve expanded our playground from running at night in urban streets to running during daytime hours in nature areas to challenge ourselves to cover more ground.
Through running, NTRC gives runners a platform and opportunities to become leaders in our local running communities. It’s because of this approach that NTRC can now be found not only in Toronto, but also Los Angeles and Portland.
NTRC’s Toronto chapter offers four runs per week:
- Monday night is our social run. Two distances are offered, 5K and 9K, and we take time to socialize and explore what’s happening in our vibrant city by running together, our speed being determined by how the participants feel.
- Tuesday night is about improving our speed, so we hit up the outdoor track or local hills. These sessions are an opportunity for fast runners and new runners to work together in positive atmosphere.
- Thursday night is dedicated to middle distance, with our run distance varying weekly from 10K to 15K. On this night, we also offer a shorter route of approximately 8K to help runners who are still working on building their distance.
- Saturday is reserved for long runs, and we use this as an opportunity to run to various areas in the Greater Toronto Area. Toronto is much bigger than the downtown core and, depending on the time of the year, we will run to areas like Evergreen Brick Works in Toronto, Centennial Park in Etobicoke, the Scarborough Bluffs, King Edward Gardens in North York or Port Credit in Mississauga.
On our runs, we visit interesting locations including graffiti art murals, street art installations and festivals, and take group photos to capture that experience. We also enjoy running to various neighbourhoods outside of the downtown core to help deepen our relationship with our beloved city.
Every month, we venture out of the downtown core and join our sister crew, the NTRC Trail Runners, to run in nature. This helps our crew escape the urban grind while continuing our path to become stronger runners.
All runners are welcome to join our free workouts and there is no need to register. We run all year long, rain or shine, and our run leaders ensure that no runner—no matter the pace—is left behind. If you’re a newer runner, we recommend joining the Monday night run to get better feel of the group and our vibe. If you’re a runner who wants a break from your monotonous solo routine or wants to add variety to your training, you’ve come to the right place.
While many NTRC runners are working on various goal races for their half or full marathon, we encourage runners of all levels to join the sessions that compliment their personal running goals—whatever they may be. If you’re looking for structured training plans for a 10K, half or full marathon, or ultra marathon, you’re in luck! We also offer training plans, and they’re free. All we ask from you is to pay it forward to the community.
Author: William Chaupiz, co-captain of Toronto’s Night Terrors Run Crew.
Check out the Night Terrors Run Crew page on Svveat for the run club’s social links and upcoming runs.