async="src="/ Taking the Long Way Home: Fall Racing Plans!

Monday, August 3, 2020

Fall Racing Plans!

Disclaimer: As an ambassador for All Community Events, I receive free race entries.

Fall is the best time to run, in my opinion! After slogging through the hot, moist conditions of summer, a runner's reward comes in the form of cooler mornings and easier runs. This year is different, though. Almost every race has been canceled. What's a runner to do? Where do we find our motivation to keep training?

Race directors have been digging deep to find ways to keep their programs going. With so many virtual offerings, runners are feeling burnt out. There have been some unique events that have been really popular, such as the GVRAT 1000 and the Yeti Ultra races. But what about events for those of us who don't want to run quite that far? 

I've got a few virtual races lined up for the fall that I'm pretty excited about! Instead of just paying the fee, running the distance, and getting the swag, these events will take place on the actual race course--this is about as close to the real thing as possible. 

I'm also signed up for a live event! Time will tell if it actually takes place.


Naperville Trails Half Marathon

I've always wanted to run the Naperville Trails Half Marathon. Last year I was signed up to run it, but due to that ongoing RA flare, I was not adequately trained for a half marathon. This year I'm feeling good, trained for distance with nowhere to race. But wait! All Community Events is hosting a 'virtual' race. Now before you groan and click away, bear with me. Runners have the option of running the race virtually on the route of your choosing OR on the actual USATF course in the Danada Forest Preserve throughout the month of September. 

Runners who choose to run the actual course can follow the course on Strava or Map My Run. Using the app Run Go, runners will get voice-guided directions. The actual race date was September 13. I will probably run this one on the date of my canceled Ice Age Trail race. Stay tuned. 

Schaumburg Turkey Trot Half Marathon

Yes, this is the race I've run more times than any other race. Traditionally the last long distance race of the Chicago racing season, the Schaumburg Turkey Trot Half Marathon is run in the Busse Woods Forest Preserve. The weather is can be pretty dicey, but this race has always been a great way to cap off the year of running. Like the Naperville Trails race, runners can choose to run this virtually on the route of their choice or they can run the official USATF course in Busse Woods November 26-29. I'm not sure what day I will run yet-it will depend on the weather! 

But will they have photos at the finish line? Will there be a finish line set up?

There is also a 5k option.

Prairie State Half Marathon

THIS EVENT IS HAPPENING LIVE on October 3rd!!!!! That's right. All Community Events has gotten approval from local authorities to hold what they are claiming will be the 'safest running event you can participate in'. Runners will sign up for a starting time prior to the event; runners will start every 10 seconds. Course water will be in sealed packages and post-race foods will be pre-packaged as grab and go. There will be no mass gathering and volunteers will be wearing face coverings and gloves. 

I'm really surprised that this was approved and will be equally surprised if it actually takes place. But yes, I am signed up for the live event. Initially when I signed up, Prairie State was only a virtual event with the option to run the actual course anytime in October, similar to the races above. I'm fully prepared for the virtual option if the live event is canceled or if the threat of contracting COVID is too great. I will continue to monitor the situation as the date approaches. 

Other race distances include a 10k and 5k. 


I know I keep saying I'm done with virtual races but the option to run these races on the actual course is about as close to a real race as it gets. I'll miss the spectators and the fanfare of crossing an actual finish line. You might ask me if I would I do these virtual races if I had to pay for it? It's a good question. But yes, I would. I need a goal, something to train for. I plan to run these as actual races. I'm not so much about the bling as I am about the challenge of running the distance and pushing myself to do my best.  That means the Garmin stays running, no matter how many walk breaks I have to take! Hopefully that won't happen. I've been running hard this summer; it's time to bring that training to a race and see how it pays off. 

What a year 2020 has turned out to be! We keep saying running isn't canceled. Here's our chance to to prove it! Do you want to sign up? All Community Events has a few other options if these races don't appeal to you. Use my code AMBASSADOR2020 to save $10 on your entry!

What are your fall running plans? Any races-virtual or live? How do you feel about running a live race right now? Do you think this plan is safe?

Running isn't canceled! Come join me this fall and run a live half marathon! /via @oldrunningmom @allcommunityeve #runchat #running 

I'm linking up with Kim and Zenaida for Tuesday Topics and with the Runners' Roundup: DebbieDeborahJenRachelSandra, and Lisa.  


28 comments :

  1. Nice, Wendy!
    I really hope that the Prairie Half will happen in October. But at least you are mentally prepared for it to go virtual (you're an expert at that by now).
    We have some races here that offer the virtual option on the actual race course. Somehow it doesn't appeal to me that much.
    Everything that excites me about a race is virus-non-compliant, such as packed starting lines, lots of spectators and crowds at the finish line. Looks like I have a long wait ahead of me.

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    1. I'm ok with running on the actual course, even if it isn't official. I think it will mix things up a bit!

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  2. I hope you get to do your race! Being able to actually run it on the course is a nice touch for a virtual race.

    The only one I'm signed up for right now is the Dempsey Challenge -- it's a great cause. Our friends live in ME (sorta, kinda, long story) & they'd actually love for us to visit -- but they're not so sure about the dogs. Although that wouldn't be race weekend anyway. Still, it would be super nice to go somewhere!

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    1. It would be nice to somewhere. I'm loving my Wisco getaways, but my husband and I hare having a LOT of togetherness.

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  3. I absolutely LOVE that you get to do those virtual races on the actual course!! That would be a real win for me too. I hope the 3rd October Race takes place! Ditiro has recently done 3 mountain biking events that had staggered starts, compulsory masks and limited numbers and he says he felt very safe out there. No running races yet for us so I suspect they will all be in 2021.

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    1. I hope that October race takes place, but I'm not very optimistic about it. Stay tuned!

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  4. I do hope to get to race some of these.

    I hope I run a fall race too. It's doubtful.

    One has be re-scheduled but not on the same course. I decided to defer.

    All the others except one have gone virtual and I asked for a refund. I've done too many virtuals already to spend more $$.

    Fingers crossed for my NH race in Oct!!!!

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  5. Wow, this is really a cool idea! I would totally sign up for a 'virtual' race if I could still run the actual race course. This is a great way to still get a 'race day feel' but be safe.

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    1. I like it--I considered running the Lakefront 10 on the actual course. Sadly, the lakefront trail didn't open up until after the race date.

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  6. Agree 100% that as runners we always need to be working toward something. I have a virtual half coming up at the end of September and a half & 10 miler in October that as of now are live but I'm certain they'll end up virtual as well. I was already registered for these races pre-pandemic. I'm not sure if I will continue to register for official races or if I'll just do my own time trials, but I will keep racing.

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    1. You are right--this definitely will give me a goal to shoot for!

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  7. That's so interesting that Prairie State still plans to take place. I guess we'll see. It's been one hella crazy year.

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  8. I hope your race can happen! I registered for a live local half marathon in November. Our local race company has hosted a few 5K races since the pandemic started, all with special protocols - no race day registration, staggered starts over the course of several hours, no start/finish gatherings, participation caps, etc. The same protocols for the half make me more optimistic, and I feel comfortable knowing we do not have to travel and that it is a small event. I saw one when on my run a few weeks ago and it was more socially distanced than running on the popular loop in town!

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  9. These are great options! I am surprised about the Prairie State Half Marathon and hopefully it will happen. I am sure many people will be happy about it.

    I have no race plans for the Fall. I am OK with it. What a CRAZY year!

    Thank you for linking up with us!

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  10. So wonderful that real live races are going to happen! Fingers crossed that other organizations figure out how to safely put them on too

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  11. Wow sure hope your race can happen! Looking forward to reading how it goes and how you feel about it. I am not sure if I am up for more virtual races yet. I will be sad to miss my annual turkey trot. Happy training!

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    1. I am tired of virtual races too! But the idea of running the virtual race on the actual course is appealing. A runner's gotta do...

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  12. Those sound like really great options! I love that you can do them on the actual race course. I need to try and see if there is anything like that around here!

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  13. What’s to stop anyone from running any virtual race on the actual course? That’s what I had planned to do in Boston providing I could do it safely.
    Good luck with all your races. Now you can choose the day with the best weather for each one.

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  14. Ah! Not a good enough reason to say the word "moist"!!!!

    I don't know what my plans are. Some of our local races are happening, but they are limited entry with staggered starts, and that intimidates the poo out of me. My Cupcake Run comeback race is a go on its new date in September and I will make a play for that. I think. I guess it will just depend.

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