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Running in 2016: The Year of the Marathon

Updated on March 22, 2016

As mentioned in my previous blog post, Running: The Most Expensive Free Sport, one of the many costs of running is the fees for participating in races. This year I’ve picked out a handful of races to run in, and I’m pretty excited. First and foremost, this is the year I’ve decided to run my first marathon. I’ve ran the Run for the Rocks Half Marathon the last two years, but neither was well trained for. Still I was able to finish each year, and even improved my time by 15 minutes in 2015. Naturally, the logical step was to sign up for a marathon next and so I did. To go along with that new distance, I’ve lined up some more races that I can use as part of my training.

Mine Run 5k:

This will be my first race of the year, and I’m very excited about it. The race takes place 650 feet underground in a salt mine, which will require the runners to wear a helmet and a light. I imagine running with a bike helmet won’t be conducive to getting a PR, but it should be a great unique race none-the-less. I will likely have a more in depth post about this race after it takes place. UPDATE: This race has come and gone, and it was awesome. Read the full review here.

Prairie Fire Half Marathon:

When I decided on the Prairie Fire Marathon, I noticed there was a Back 2 Back challenge available. You pick a shorter distance in Spring, and a longer distance for the fall race. Since I wanted to complete the fall marathon, that meant I needed to run the half marathon in the spring. I’ll get an extra medal out of the challenge as well….assuming I finish both races that is. I know I can finish a half a shade under 2 hours, but I’ve never run this particular course before. My official goal is any time under 2 hours.

Hospital Hill Run:

Every now and then Meghan tells me I should sign-up for a race, and this is one of those races. All of the races I’ve run so far in my life have been on fairly flat courses. For that reason I’m excited about the challenge that Hospital Hill can present, as it is far from a flat course. I’ll also enjoy running around downtown Kansas City.

Officer Down 5k:

Meghan has a special place in her heart for the Police and their four-legged K9 friends. This race helps support both, so we decided to run this one together. Just a simple 5k we can use for a training race.

Prairie Fire Marathon:

The second race of the Back 2 Back challenge is the marathon. It is one of the few 26.2 mile races in the area, and therefore it is fairly popular. It will by far be the biggest event I’ve been a part of. It will be a challenge, and will certainly require me to take my training a bit more seriously than I do for half marathons. Historically I only run for my workouts, and the extent of my cross training is some softball and volleyball. I’m not going to be able to ignore all the core work I should be putting in if I want to complete this race. Honestly, that may be a bigger challenge for me than the race itself. I won’t set a target time for this until I see my time from the spring half, but imagine I’ll be shooting for a 4 hour time. No matter what it is guaranteed to be a PR!

Run for the Rocks

I’ve raced this half marathon the last two years, and we’ve officially added it to the list. The date is close to the marathon I’m running, so I’m worried about wearing myself out too much. My first attempt at this race was around 2:15, and last year I was able to improve that to 2:00.

St. Louis Rock ‘n Roll 10k:

I’ve created a running bucket list for myself, and this race should take care of two of those items. I’m a rock ‘n roll music fan, so I’ve always been intrigued by the Competitor Rock ‘n Roll Marathon Series. On that list I also have a variety of distance races accounted for, which includes a 10k. Even though my usual morning run is a 10k, I’ve never ran a race of that distance. If all goes to plan I will have marked off a marathon, 10k, and RnR event from my running bucket list in 2016. Meghan will be joining me for this 10k, and we plan on making it a mini-vacation. I am personally aiming for anything under 1 hour for this one.

Potential Events:

Classic Rock: This is the “warmup” race for Run for the Rocks. It’s a 5k that takes place the evening before the Run for the Rocks half marathon. I participated in this race last year, which was the inaugural year.

 

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