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Carrie Hope Fletcher (pink), Bryony Gordon (centre) and Shareefa J (right of centre) celebrate with runners after crossing the finish line in the Celebrate You wave.

Smiles for Miles

This year we are celebrating the meaningful connections we make through running and calling on participants to complete the distance with a smile on their face.

The Vitality London 10,000 will welcome around 20,000 people on Sunday 22 September, and will champion the role our running communities and social groups play in supporting our desire and motivation to exercise.

The final wave of the day will be the Smiles for Miles wave. The brainchild of comedian and podcaster Helen Thorn and author and mental health campaigner Bryony Gordon, the wave will celebrate the joy of running – with joggers and walkers also welcome – and the pleasure that can be had by exercising with your friends, family, or anyone else. The Women’s Running community, including the mighty Pod Squad, are excited to be joining the Smiles for Miles wave, hoping to encourage and support as many people as possible to run, jog or walk with us in celebration of each of us and those around us.

To enter the Smiles for Miles wave, check the tick box when signing up and you will be allocated a place there. Places are limited so be sure to sign up below!

Participants holding hands at the Vitality London 10,000

Tell your story

There's no better way to discover the benefits of physical activity on your mental health than by getting out there to train for your incredible Vitality London 10,000 experience.

We want to hear your story. If you have an inspiring tale to tell ahead of Event Day, please email us.

Mental Health Mates

Bryony Gordon founded Mental Health Mates in 2016 to encourage women to get active and celebrate body positivity.

Following the pandemic, it was evident that the number of people impacted by mental health concerns was rising. A London Marathon Events survey of Vitality London 10,000 participants to understand their motivations for running found that 92 per cent of respondents said running was important or very important to their mental health and wellbeing, while 90 per cent of respondents said that the cognitive benefits of running were equally important or more important than the physical benefits.

Mental Health Mates is a peer support network for people experiencing mental health challenges. The network organises walking groups across more than 150 locations in the UK, providing a safe space for people to get active in a positive, supportive environment.

Bryony, who is a journalist, bestselling author, and campaigner, says: "I set up Mental Health Mates when I was really suffering. My obsessive-compulsive disorder was terrible. I was depressed and in the grip of alcoholism.

"I knew there were other people like me. I just didn't know how to meet them. So, I created this peer support group that allows people to walk and talk together without fear of judgement.

"I'm incredibly proud of the extraordinary community it has become. I hope we continue to grow and reach as many people who need this sort of help as possible."