Monday, January 12, 2015

So many races, so little time....

I'm linking up today with MCM mama, Run the Great Wide Somewhere, and My No-Guilt Life to mull over the races I'm thinking about for this year.

Tuesdays on the Run

In my post on Chicago, I alluded to races I've run in the city I love. I also talked about why I haven't committed to much of anything yet...I want to see how I feel as the year moves forward. Last year, because I had a foot fracture, I had to DNS a race I paid for and that didn't make me happy at all. Most races don't sell out and so I feel like I have a little wiggle room. I also am thinking about backup races, in case the ones I want to run do sell out. 

One race I did commit to early on is the Sarasota Half Marathon on March 15. As early as last March, I was considering a go at this race. The timing of this race was a problem, since my boys don't have spring break until the last week of March. I needed to see if my parents would host me for 2 weeks, and if my work would grant me the time off. Luckily, everything fell into place and I was able to sign up. This is a race that sells out and I wanted to make sure I got in. I'm so excited to run this one. The race runs from Sarasota across the John Ringling Causeway to St Armands Circle and back to Sarasota. And if you like bling, this medal is a keeper, with a large dolphin on it. This will be my third Florida half marathon (and 11th overall). To say I'm excited is an understatement!


I've also committed to the Great Western Half Marathon. This is a trail half marathon, held on May 3, run on the Great Western Trail in Kane County. Because it is a trail run, the entries cap at 1200, which keeps it small and safe. The race is relatively inexpensive ($55) and has a nifty train engine medal. I'm looking forward to running this one. My friend Karen, from Trading in My Heels is leading a training group for this race, and I'm excited to do a race with her! I'm trying to rope in a few other friends as well. 


I'm also planning on running the Chicago Marathon again this year. Last year I won my entry, but this year I'm planning on jumping into the lottery. Some of my friends are moving on to a different marathon, but I do love this one and am looking forward to running it again. My first go at this beast wasn't pleasant, but I got my head around that and trained smart and had a fantastic time. I'd love to best my time last year, but even if I don't, I'll be ok with that. As long as it still is fun, that is. Stay tuned. I do have a couple of marathons in mind as a backup plan, but I'm not going to even think like that at this point!


I haven't yet committed to the CARA Lakefront 10 miler on April 18, but most likely I will run that one. The 10 mile distance is one of my favorites and it will serve as a "long run" while I continue ramping up my miles for Great Western in May. I've talked about this race before. It is a "runners' race" and is always fast and fun. Even if the weather is bad.

What else am I considering? I'm still looking at a late summer/early fall half. I have to consider my marathon training plan and the timing of 13.1 miles. A lot of halfs are held here around the same time as the marathon. 

 A couple Chicago races that I might consider includes RnR Chicago, which is on July 19. I've never run an RnR. Could be hot. And the expo is a pain, at McCormick Place, which is a giant convention center south of downtown. No race day packet pickup, which means I'd have to head down to the city two days in a row. The Chicago Half Marathon, which I've run before, is this year on September 27. This is 2 weeks before the Chicago Marathon and I'd have to run it as a taper run. I'm not so sure about that.

I've always wanted to do the North Face Endurance Challenge, which is held in Wisconsin September 14.  But would a trail run mess with my marathon training? What about the Madison Mini Marathon, which I've run before? On August 22, the only issue with that is it is my son's 18th birthday and maybe he wouldn't want to go out of town for the weekend. And do I dare leave him home alone? Um, no. That could mess with my head, anyways... 

While looking for a fall half marathon, I came upon this Lake Michigan trail half/full/50k on September 6, in Cudahy Wisconsin, which is just south of Milwaukee. This looks intriguing! BTW, the full is a Boston qualifier for anyone looking for an alternative to Chicago. This one is moving high up on the possibility list. Another trail marathon that came up is the Nearly Sane Trail Half Marathon which is held on August 23. Considering how hot it can be here that time of year, a trail race does have a certain appeal to it! This one is held in a Forest Preserve about 15 miles from my house. Hmmm....

Depending on how the marathon goes, I would even consider a late fall half. But that's a long way away....

There is also a relay that I'm planning on. The Fall 50, held in beautiful Door County Wisconsin in late October, is either an ultra or a relay. Door County is a peninsula between Lake Michigan and Green Bay, and the race runs from the northern tip down to the end of the peninsula where lies the town of Sturgeon Bay. My parents have a home in Door County and I have been going up there since I was a little girl. Door County has a special place in my heart, not only for the memories it holds, but because it is a place of beauty and peace. I would love to run this relay. Several of my friends have expressed an interest, and I'm hoping to have this firmed up by April, when registration opens. 

Ellison Bay Bluff

The curvy road which yes, you might get to run on if this is on your leg of the race!

Oh, the sunsets over Green Bay!

I think once I know I'm in the lottery for Chicago, I can move forward and commit to a fall half. Until then...I'll keep considering the possibilities. And I'll keep running and training! So many races...so little time (and money!)

I always say, have you ever seen Wonder Woman and me in the same room? I think not...

How do you decide on races? Are you a planner or do you wing it, taking it as it comes? How many races do you run in a year?

And local peeps, have you made your plans for 2015? Are you running any of the same races as me? And what about the options I'm considering for the fall? Have you run any of them? Any insight?

44 comments :

  1. I'm a combination of planner and winger. I usually plan for a few months at a time, based on wherever my current fitness is. This year, I've actually plotted out the whole year, though I'm keeping my options open in case I feel better or worse than I think I will. I rarely run races that sell out, so I always wait until the last minute to pay!

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    1. I guess I'm more like you..I plan a few and wing a few!

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  2. I'm a planner with the occasional impromptu race! I think I've already told you but, Chicago is on my list this year and I can't wait. I've run it before but it will be my husband's first time. Still deciding between 2 spring halfs for a goal race.

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    1. I guess I'm a bit of a planner here...! I hope to meet you in the fall!

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  3. RnR races are a blast but I can see how it could be hot then in Chicago. You should come down and do DC in March. Looks like a fun year!

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    1. I'd love to come to DC, believe it or not, I've never been there! And so many awesome bloggers live there...

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  4. So many cool races near home. Too bad I don't live there now - someday! I'm totally jealous of the Sarasota race. That one sounds awesome!

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    1. Truth! Between Chicago and Wisconsin--you can't lose!

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  5. I have a lot of ideas penciled in on my calendar, but nothing definite. We haven't decided what our vacation plans are, and that's throwing a kink into my race planning! I'll probably end up running 10-12 half marathons, 1 full marathon...and whatever else comes my way.

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    1. Are you going to a full this year? I'm so excited for you!

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  6. What a great schedule! The Great Western Half Marathon sounds amazing. I'm going to do my first trail half marathon this year and I'm so pumped! I hope you get into Chicago, I'm sure you'll do great!

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    1. This will be my first trail half too! Are you going to do any fulls?

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  7. I'm trying to come up with a tentative plan for the year and go from there. I guess there's alot to consider when you want to do a lot of races- especially long distances. I really want to run Chicago one of these days!

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  8. I love your race schedule! I usually try to plan ahead, but this with injury.. I think this year is going to be a lot of winging it :)

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  9. I am always so jelly of dolphin, surfboard and other beachy medals, alas I've run in FL but never raced. Need to add that to the bucket list one of these years. I plan the big stuff then fill in with smaller races. I still don't really have a BHAG (big, hairy audacious goal) like NYCM was last year. Ok maybe that's the tri...

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    1. I can't believe you've never done a race in Florida! No Disney? Never drank the koolade? LOL...

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  10. WHOA! This Great Western Half Marathon looks awesome; I wanna go...I try to plan out most of my races but, inevitably, I get sucked in to some other ones along the way by my running club; I call them the "enablers."

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  11. I am running my 11th half and my 3rd Florida half this weekend. I ran Sarasota in 2013. You will love it!

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    1. I can't wait! Looks like we are on the same track...

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  12. My hubby is from Wisconsin so I need to find a fun fall run there! Nice run schedule- I am still working on mine and yes, i am a planner :)

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    1. There's a ton of great races in Wisconsin in the fall...let me know if you pick one! I'm still open on that front...

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  13. Chicago is definitely on my race list! I'd also love to find some nice trail races. Your schedule sounds great! Thanks for linking up with us today!

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  14. I am one of the lucky ones who gets to run with you this year!!❤️❤️
    I'm so excited to see you kick butt in FL in March.
    Love you, W!

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    1. I'm the lucky one, I think! I get to run with YOU! Did you see the comments about the awesomeness of the GWH? I'm EXCITED!

      XOXO

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  15. I'd have to say that I'm part planner and part winger. I like to have a lot of options, but I don't really sign up for anything until I really feel like committing to it. The early bird registrations are quite tempting, though. Good luck with your races! They sound great!

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  16. I ran GW the last 2 years and it's my PR half. Hope to run it again this year!

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  17. I'm trying to do the 50 states, but it's slow going due to cost, so I've been lucky to get one or two racecations in a year. There are a lot of good races where I live in Southern California. I'm trying to not keep doing the same ones over and over again. I'd love to do the Chicago Marathon. One day I'll get there. Have a great year!

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    1. What a great goal! I've run races in only 3 states :( Illinois, Wisconsin, and Florida. Money is definitely an issue in that department!

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  18. Wow, so many great races! I wish I could get out to Chicago for the marathon, but with my trip to Paris, the budget has tightened up a bit!

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    1. Hmmm...Paris vs Chicago? I know where my resources would be headed!

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  19. I'm doing what you are doing! Putting my name in for Chicago and letting that decide where I go from there. :) How great would it be if a group of us all got into Chicago!?

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  20. Sarasota, mid-March, brilliant! Also love the sounds of the trail half--nothing better. I'm up in the air still with what I'll be doing--taking it as it comes.

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    1. I'm so excited to go to Florida and I've wanted to do this one for several years. This year all the pieces fell into place for it to happen!

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  21. Fantastic list. I don't plan my whole year other than planning around the Boston Marathon. After that, I will focus on the triathlon season over the Spring and Summer then ponder a Fall marathon. I'm trying to get into NY AGAIN!

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    1. I'd love to do NYCM...maybe once my boys are out of high school! And of course, I'd LOVE to do Boston. That's going to be a stretch for me, but you never know, right? Have you ever done Chicago?

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