Friday, January 13, 2017

Kicking that Bucket List: 5 Races I'd Love to Run

Did you know that I ran the Big Sur Marathon last year? I hardly ever miss a chance to mention that I fulfilled a dream when I crossed that finish line! But today's Friday Five 2.0 topic got me thinking. What's left for a runner after she does her dream race? Well, I've been thinking about this a lot. Since running from here on out is all about fun for me, I've picked 5 races that I want to add to the bucket list.

By the way, did you know the term "bucket list" comes from the saying "kicked the bucket"? As in, things you want to do before you die. I'm not planning on crossing over to the other world anytime soon, so I figure I've got a few years to knock some of these races off the list. The races I'm eyeballing are all in the US.



Bryce Canyon Half Marathon
This half marathon is always held on the 2d Saturday in July. While there are quite a few half marathons that are near the national parks, this one runs on a downhill through Bryce Canyon. Sounds quite amazing! There is also another half marathon, which is held in conjunction with the Bryce Canyon ultra races June 17. This course sounds a little more challenging. I'd be up for either of them. For the more ambitious, there is a 100 mile, 50 mile, and 50k distance.

source: nps.gov
Avenue of the Giants Marathon
Marcia hipped me to this race last year when we were discussing Big Sur, and I haven't forgotten about it. Avenue of the Giants takes place this year May 7 and takes runners through Humboldt Redwoods State Park in Northern California. A small race, this one's right up my alley. There's a half marathon and a 10k as well. I won't get there this spring but you never know what the future holds.

source: avenueofthegiants.net
Key West Half Marathon
Even though I've had my booty handed to me on a platter every time I've run one, you know I love me a Florida half marathon. There's just something about running in the warmth of the sun while the rest of the country is shivering. Yes, living in Chicago during the winter, I have no opportunity to prepare for the Florida heat and humidity. But my reward is being able to run in a beautiful place in the dead of winter. I haven't been to Key West for over 20 years. I'm sure a lot has changed since then. But who wouldn't want to be there in January? This one's coming up soon--January 15--so this year is out, but this one's on the list for next year!

source: southfloridareporter.com
Rock and Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon
Those of you who know me well are probably thinking--what? She hates crowds! But I won't lie--this is one race I'd love to run, provided I'm in the company of some good friends. I went to Las Vegas for the first time a couple of years ago with my sister with zero expectations--I didn't want to go--and we had an amazing weekend. I think this would be a lot of fun. Maybe I can make this one happen--#hotlottafun ladies? November 12.

source: mybestruns.com
Boston Marathon
This one is still the ghost that is haunting me. I haven't given up on it yet! I'd still love to run Boston and I still think I have a BQ in me if I can get this RA under control. The other problem is ALL THE CHEATING people are doing to get in. Even if I meet my qualifying time of 4:10 (a perk of getting older), I'd probably need to be right around 4 hours to guarantee an entry spot. I may never get there but I'm sure going to keep trying. It keeps me motivated.

source: boston.com
I have many more races I'd like to run, but these are few that I've been thinking about for a few years now. How about you? Any races you want to do? Have you run any of these and is it worth it? Are you going to watch the Boston Marathon movie that is coming out?

I'm linking up with Running on Happy and Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday 5 2.0!





93 comments :

  1. I am very interested by the Boston Marathon movie. Obviously it will be a movie about Boston, and they have to make it mainstream, but I am curious as to how much they really make about runners.

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    1. I'm interested too! Plus Marky Mark is in it, which is a plus.

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  2. Your post graphic is awesome! You are such a pro now!! I totally want to go to Key West for my birthday. But that's in September and my husband says Florida is better for the winter. (Smh). Maybe if I can convince my husband to run the half we can go in January! And I hope I see you in Boston soon!!! We'll be in Chicago again this year for him to run the marathon!

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    1. I'll be at mile 13 at Chicago to spectate--maybe you want to join us? I'd love that! It would be fun to do Key West together. Let's keep each other posted on that...

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    2. Remind me closer to October! ��

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  3. Those all look really fun. I think if I did a half marathon, which I don't see happening, I would pick a rock and roll one! I think it would have so much energy and be really motivating and upbeat. We are going to see the movie on Monday. I like your comment to Susie "Marky Mark is in it"... I couldn't agree more!

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  4. I'll see the movie, even though I still shudder to think about that day. Great picks my friend! If getting to AOG weren't so darn challenging, I'd be all over it...we'll see. I'm so up for a #holottafun in Vegas!

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    1. Wouldn't it be a fun adventure? AOG, that is! LV would just be FUN.

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  5. I did Rock n Roll Las Vegas this year. It was a crap race for me because I was injured, but the crowds are great and you get to run down the strip at night! If you go, I would skip the 5K and only do the half.

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    1. I'm not a two-fer racer, so for sure I'd only be down for the half!

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  6. I'm trying to broaden my race horizons this year. I have a hard time planning ahead for out of town races b/c of work, but I need to get over that.

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    1. The hard part about the out of town races is that you are completely out of your comfort zone. So for me, it's all about the experience!

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  7. I did the RnR Vegas half a few years ago and I have to say that it was a blast! The crowd support is unreal and the course is all flat and it starts in the afternoon. I would say go for that one!

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    1. Sounds like a big party to me! I think it would be a lot of fun.

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  8. I've already done Vegas. Twice. But I didn't know what I was doing basically either time and would love to try it again! But Mr. Judy would have to come.

    I always thought Key West would be my FL half . . .

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    1. Husbands aren't allowed on girls weekend.

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  9. That Bryce Canyon race looks like it would be gorgeous! And - I didn't realize you didn't automatically get to go to Boston if you qualified. That's frustrating. How do you even cheat on something like that?!

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    1. The link to that blog, Marathon Investigation, holds the answer to that question.

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  10. The Boston movie has me intrigued. I think most any runner has had the Boston Marathon cross their mind. Like you, I'd have some work to do to qualify, and just don't honestly think I'm willing to go that route with the training commitment and then still not get in (hello? Route 66?). NYCM has my interest, though....(but another lottery and mucho $$$)

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    1. I don't really have the desire to do NYCM. As you know, I'm not much for the spectacle. Except Chicago, that is!

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  11. Great list Wendy and I could not agree more about the cheating to get into Boston. It makes me so sad. I also found out recently that overseas runners can "buy" a race entry through a tour company. That makes me so angry. Boston is special and it should be hard to get into and not just with $$. I'm definitely going to see the Boston movie, especially since I spectated that day and ran the following year. My sister lives less than a mile from where they found one of the brothers in the boat. Scary indeed. My list includes a Hawaii race and of course I would love to run in French Polynesia, but I don't think they have a race there.

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    1. There are so many great places to run--I'm all about the adventure.

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  12. How are people cheating to get into Boston? I thought they kept a pretty good eye on that race?
    I did RnR Las Vegas a few years back and I think all the Hype was more exciting than the actual race was. It was a PR for me there so that was good though.
    The Avenue of the Giants looks very cool. How amazing to run among those huge trees!

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    1. If you chase the link where I talk about Boston, it will take you to a blog that has started because the cheating is so rampant! At Honolulu alone, over 200 runners were disqualified for cutting the course short...

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  13. What a great list! The Bryce Canyon race seems just awesome! :)

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    1. I think most of the national park races would be pretty darned spectacular!

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  14. Great list. I'd love to run Bryce. Key West is on my list and boy would we have #holottafun in Vegas. (I even have the Friday before off from work.)

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    1. My husband wants to go to Key West with me, so that one's already on the calendar for next January!

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  15. The Bryce Canyon race looks gorgeous! Big Sur is on my bucket list as well. Time to pick a pretty next marathon!

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  16. I have a dear friend who, though he BQ'd, never was quite fast enough to actually make the cut. So he turned his sights towards the Dana Farber Cancer Foundation and has run Boston 3 times and raised over $100,000 for them. He said this has ultimately been way more satisfying. Maybe you could consider something like that.

    Bryce Canyon looks gorgeous. I have run a half with lots of downhills and I'll just say it's not as easy as it sounds. I couldn't believe how exhausted my quads were at the end of that race!

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    1. Well, geez, he's kind of an overachiever! :p I think the minimum for Boston is $5000, which still sounds like a lot to me!

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  17. I can't believe people cheat to get into Boston. How do they sleep at night? I hate hearing about things like that. Karma will get 'em eventually.

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    1. More than that they cheat to get into Boston, I hate that they steal spots from people who actually qualified. I'd be really upset if I didn't get in because I missed it by a minute or so, knowing that a course cutter took my spot.

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  18. I'm potentially looking at the Vegas 10k. I haven't been to Vegas since I was a kid, and there's a whole lot more now to see.

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  19. Bryce Canyon looks awesome! I'd also like to do any Key West race LOL. I figure I'll qualify for Boston when I'm 70 - until then I'll just keep plugging along.

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    1. That may be me as well! Never give up the dream!

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  20. I have friends who have done 3 of the 5 you've mentioned. I'd love to do a race at Disney World. I ran a half in Kauai and that was pretty awesome!

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  21. Three of your races are on my race bucket list too. Key West, RnR Vegas, and the Avenue of Giants! I'd love to do Boston too, but I know I'll never qualify. Dreams can come true though! :)

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  22. Key West and Vegas are both on my bucket list as well. We went to Key West a couple of years ago, and I'd love to go back (well, travel to anyplace tropical that is). I've never been to Vegas, so running the race there would be a great excuse to go there.

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    1. I think it would be a blast. That would be one race I think my husband would enthusiastically attend!

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  23. Bryce Canyon and Avenue of the Giants. FOR SURE.

    I will never BQ. I so wish I could but it's just in the cards for me. I'm a solid middle of the pack runner and I am a-ok with that!

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  24. Avenue of the Giants looks awesome!!! Thanks to you, Big Sur is on my bucket list. :)

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  25. I love EVERY race on this list and would gladly go with you to any of them. Also (in case you forgot!) I WILL be doing the Las Vegas RnR again this year and would love to meet up. It really wasn't that crowded at all and it was such a wonderfully organized race...plus, I'll be there :-) I would also love to do the Key West race since my husband and I were married there in 2006. We haven't been back since 2011 so it would be super fun all around! Lastly, never give up on your Boston dream!!!!

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    1. I'm seriously considering LV. I know my husband would love to go there. But for sure Key West. Let's do it! Of course, you'll be showered and changed by the time I cross the finish line!

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  26. Cheers to a great list of some awesome races, friend! I can't wait to read ALL of your race recaps, but especially from the ones you want to do as much as these!:)

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  27. I was looking at the Avenue of the Giants Marathon a couple weeks ago. This California girl loves those trees! And May is a beautiful month here.

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  28. I love Key West, running a race there would be amazing!

    Jen
    jpabstfitness.com

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    1. Right? That would be be right up there with LV.

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  29. If May doesn't work for you and Avenue of the Giants, you should check out Humboldt Redwoods Marathon. It's always the third Sunday of October and on the same exact course. The only difference is that the marathon goes out the opposite direction first (it's a double out-and-back event). The half marathon course is identical. And instead of the 10K that Avenue has, HRM has a 5K. Everybody seems to forget that the Avenue of the Giants Marathon has a fall twin. :)

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    1. I saw HRM when I was looking at AOG. That would definitely be an option!

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  30. I would LOVE the first two on your list! There is nothing better than a race with spectacular scenery. There are just so many great races to choose from. I feel like I'm running out of precious time. Sometimes it's not even the race itself -- but the time spent having a #holottafun.

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    1. I feel the same way. Especially now--I don't know what the future holds for me! So I just want to make the most of every run, every race.

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  31. Avenue of the Giants popped up on my radar a few years ago. It sounds so beautiful and peaceful! Right now, Boston is on my radar. If I get there once again and am able to FINISH that thing, I'll be happy and move on.

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    1. I want to see you cross that finish line! With me there, that is...

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  32. oooo I want to do that one in the redwoods!! and RNR Vegas!

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    1. Any good races in Austin? Besides RnR?

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  33. Holy crap I would love AOG! It might just push me into half marathon distances again except that I'd totally go for the 10k since they have the option. :) Dates don't work for this year but that's definitely a race-cation I could get behind.

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  34. I'd love to be a spectator at Boston. I still have to run my first marathon so the thought of going to Boston to run probably won't happen. I can't wait too see Patriots Day in theaters.

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  35. Some of those look fabulous! I am looking at Vegas and Key West as well!

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  36. I used to do Las Vegas every year, then they moved it to a night race. I did it that way once and didn't care much for it. I get wanting to check it out, though!

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    1. I'm not a night racer but this one could be fun!

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  37. I was signed up for RnR Las Vegas, but the timing was bad. I had a client who ran it, enjoyed it, but said the crowds were CRAZY! Still, I'd love to do it too. Maybe the half though.

    I never ran Boston back when I used to qualify. My husband has run it twice, including the 100th in 1996. I don't know if I've got it in this old, injured body to run the 4:10 that I need now to qualify. Of course, next year my qualifying time goes up a bit, so I can look forward to that!

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    1. That nice BQ time is definitely a perk of getting older!

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  38. I say, let's make LV happen! and add Key West to your list for next year- both of these are on my bucket list too! :)

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    1. I'm working on LV--wouldn't that be fun?

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  39. I've run the RnR Las Vegas. Yes, crowded but fun. I love running at night and along the strip. Very cool. I am planning to see the Patriots Day.

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    1. I don't love running at night, but RnR would be a big party!

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  40. You should definitely run RnR Vegas! It's super fun. I've only done it once (full in 2014), but I live in Vegas, so I usually volunteer and/or check out the expo during race weekend. I love the energy.

    Avenue of the Giants would be very fun! I might need to add that to my list.

    I may be the ONLY runner that isn't enticed to BQ. My dream race would be NYC.

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    1. I think I must have OCD, because I can't get Boston off my mind!

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  41. This sounds like such a great list Wendy! I probably need to do some research and plan some more bucket list runs - I'll cross Boston of the list this year (and I know you'll get it too). It may seem weird, but my most important race of the year for me is always Disney Princess - so it kind of feels like a perpetual bucket race :)

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    1. I know a lot of people love that Disney race!

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  42. You've listed a bunch of great races! RnR Vegas is a must! I hope to do Avenue of the Giants next year or the year after!! :)

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  43. VEGAS!! It really is the most fun race. You have to do it!

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  44. This is a great list, and I will have to add some of these to my list! I also have been eyeing some international ones!

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    1. I'd love to do some international races, but for now, the US will keep me busy!

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  45. Love this list of races. I am with you on the Florida ones...they always sound great but kick my butt! Miami Marathon was my first marathon and I used to go run halfs down there all the time bc my sister lived there. I have learned to have no expectations when running in those conditions..

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    1. I have no expectations, yet I'm always disappointed in my finish time!

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  46. That is funny that Key West half is on your list. I am just now reading this post, Yes, playing catch up from my fun weekend. On Thursday I was riding around in Key West virtually anyway via Google Earth, it's really amazing you should try it!

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    1. Mike says he wants to go, so I'm holding him to it!

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