- I hate paying to run...I often feel guilty using "fun" money for a race entry when I could use it for a day at the play place, a special lunch out with the boys/family, a new movie to snuggle up with etc. So I tend to be picky about what races I will be doing and how many a year I run. And up until just recently the husband worked on weekends and taking a Saturday or Sunday off so I could race was not easy so I did not ask unless it was a race I really wanted to be a part of.
- Pre Race anxiety...this is a big one for me. I become overwhelmed pretty easily on race morning especially if I have to drive somewhere for the race. This often leads to me showing up for a race hours early and exhausted by the time the race starts. Not to mention the 15 trips to the port-a-potty because I am afraid I will have to go at mile 2.
So because I like to be selective with the races here are some of the criteria I use:
- Distance: Is it close? Will it require an over night stay? I like to have that one travel race a year that we can go to as a family and make it a vacation...For the last few years and 2013 it will be Bayshore in Traverse City since it is one of my favorite courses and races.
- Crowds: Is it a HUGE race? If it is a really large race similar to the Downtown Turkey Trot I normally opt to skip it. To many people overwhelm me...But something like the Free Press 1/2 seemed to be a controlled crowd and actually was not that bad.
- Medal: I do not keep my medals (or even my bibs for that matter) but I like to run races that have really nice bling and I think will be appreciated when I donate them to Medals 4 Mettle (a running charity that donates earned medals to patients dealing with debilitating illnesses)
- Cost: Is the cost of the race worth the entry fee? Normally I plan far enough in advance so I get the cheapest entry fee for a race, rarely if ever will I pay last minute costs to race. Recently I ran the PoHo 8K and several people had issues with the entry fee, but since I knew I was getting (and needed) a sweet 1/2 zip that cost even more then the entry fee to me it balanced out. This also applies to who the money will benefit from the race, does it go to a group or a charity that I support?
- Course: Is it a course I have already run and want to conquer, is it a new course/race that I want to try?
2013 Race Schedule:
- 1/1/2013: Commitment Day 5K (completed)
- 1/12/2013: PoHo 8K (completed-ran because I wanted to add a winter race to the schedule, chocolate, 1/2 zip, friends, and relatively close distance from home)
- 3/24/2013: Out Run CF (registered: The founder of this race is actually a pretty inspiring individual who also happens to be a GP Runner. Emily has been in Runners World and is featured in a new running documentary as a runner with cystic fibrosis.)
- 5/25/2013: Bayshore Marathon (registered: This may be the last year I run the Bayshore 1/2 for awhile so we can travel to other cities but my goal is to sub-2, this is also my favorite course to run because the beauty of Traverse City never gets old)
- 6/7/2013: Cipriano Classic 5K (Good cause run)
- 9/8/2013: Run Woodstock 50K (I need to register for this but it is my "challenge" race of the year and will be my first Ultra Marathon...I am a bit intimidated but some hard work and I will be able to finish it-which is the ultimate goal)
- 10/20/2013: Detroit Free Press International 1/2 (registered: I wanted to run this one at least one more time (to get some use out of the MI Enhanced License I got last year) but I also actually had a wonderful time at it last year and wanted to run the bridge one more time)
Bucket List Races:
- St. Jude Memphis Marathon: I remember doing the St. Jude Math a Thon as a kid and this is a wonderful organization so I would love to run for them and in a race that benefits the hospital.
- Disney Goofy Challenge (Planned for January 2015): I figure medals with Donald, Mickey and Goofy would be awesome to give to the little patients through Medals 4 Mettle.
- Chicago: Planned for 2014 ...While this is a HUGE race I had a great time in the city of Chicago last year and what a better way to see it all. We are planning this for our travel race next year since the boys also love the city.
- Either a full or half marathon in DC
- An international race (Scotland, Paris, Italy wherever-I am not picky)
How do you pick what races you are going to participate in? What are some of your favorite races to run?