Monday, March 6, 2017

How to Plan a Race Calendar & a Discount

Have you ever been curious as to why people choose to run the races they do?

I've never strategically planned out my race calendar with a rhyme or reason but looking back, there are definitely some trends I've followed and after a few years, I know what I want to do and what I don't.


Lets start at the beginning of the year.

(When I pick races I'm not going for quantity. In fact, I usually only like to do one race a month)

Jan/Feb

In the past, I've always run the Princess races at Disney (in February) or the Marathon (in January), or sometimes both.  Although I love these races, It's just not a great time of year.

Training for an early January race isn't that bad because it's still not that cold leading up to race day but the fact that the race is the weekend following the end of Christmas break makes me feel rushed. It's like fast forwarding one exciting time to get to another. Moments are special and I like to savor them!

As much as I love the Princess races at Disney, I know they would require me to train when the weather is the coldest and I'm not a fan of cold weather running. I hadn't had to worry about that too much in the past because every Princess half marathon I've run, I've been injured (so there's that)!  However, I do feel I need a redemption run so I do hope to complete it again sometime. Or perhaps I'll just go for a smaller distance so I don't have to train as much...lol

March
Not in a million years did I ever think I would run a half marathon in NYC in March. I know how windy it gets and I also know the chance for ideal running weather(for me) is not great.  BUT, I could not be more happy to have the chance to run it this year and what makes it better is that the weather here has been mild this winter so that made training go well.  I know scheduling a long distance race in March is quite a gamble so I won't be doing it again. In fact, I think I already have my first race of next year planned out already and it is only a 10K in March (that should be much more manageable to train for over the winter).

April
For the past several Aprils I've had mid-distance races (mini race-cations) planned and its worked out pretty well. There are a lot of races that pop up during this time of year so I think I'll be able to keep this trend going. April races seem to be the ones I look forward to the most and this year is no exception as I have a super fun one planned!

May-August
Because of how warm it gets, this time of year seems to be focused more on 5K races (with the exception of one year doing an 8K, and 10K).  I would certainly be open to running races of other distances over the summer (since I love running in the summer) but anything more than a 5K can be hard to find.

September
There's a local race I do with my family each year. I'll probably continue this trend.

October-December
The race possibilities during this time are endless. This time of year I don't mind running a longer distance race because I know the weather during training will be almost perfect.  Although I don't have anything set on the race calendar for this fall yet, I've seen a few that have caught my eye. This time of year is perfect for another race-cation.  -M



PS. If you are looking for a race to fill your calendar this year and you want to add the Utah Valley Marathon (or Half or 10K) you can use our code faf15 for a 15% discount off registration. (sorry our free registrations have already been given away)

I'm sure you've seen a ton of  bloggers talking about this race lately. Apparently all the cool kids will be running it on June 10th.

Here's why:
  • The Utah Valley Marathon was named a TOP 10 race in America by Runner’s World Magazine in 2014
  • They are giving out a nice race jacket instead of a shirt in 2017 due to this being our 10 year anniversary
  • They have a super fast downhill course, BQ
  • They have very large race medals


We will be linking up with the gals from TOTR.



42 comments:

  1. Utah does look gorgeous! I'm glad so many people are getting free entries. As you know I'm not one to plan ahead too much for races!

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    1. Yea, I like the races that I can sign up for at the last minute!

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  2. I'm not a big planner, which is what I'm writing about on my post!

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    1. I plan it all out in my head as to what I'd "like to do" but then what I actually feel like doing is often different!

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  3. I do like to plan. I like to have my halfs lined up ahead of time -- it motivates me. I don't plan the shorter races as much.

    I really hate training through the winter. It just sucks! I can deal with the cold, but the snow usually really narrows down where you can run -- IF you can run -- and I get so sick of the same routes.

    Thankfully for the moment we are snow free so I was able to go somewhere I haven't been in a while yesterday!

    I usually try to avoid halfs in the summer, but I will be at UT. :) God willing!

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  4. I'm big on planning, and am often looking wayyyyyyy ahead in my calendar, sometimes more than a year in advance. With the Disney races now, its pretty much necessary to have to plan that far ahead.

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    1. Oh I can't even think of planning a year in advanced. I have too many other things going on in my life. That's the bad thing about Disney, how far in advance you have to sign up. I'm glad I've done all the Disney races I care to do, although I wouldn't mind repeating a few if the timing is right!

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  5. I have my major races planned (mostly tri races) through July and then I am going to see how things go. Looks like you are really organized

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    1. Well I don't have all my races planned for THIS year. This is just a run down of what kind of races I usually do during the year.

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  6. My half is always at the end of April so the beginning training is always so cold. I was thinking of doing a local half that is at the end of October & curious how the training will feel different since it will start in the heat of summer.

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  7. I am a planner by nature but I like to leave some wiggle room open just in case a big opportunity presents itself for and adventure like Utah! I don't normally run a half in June but I am going to give it a try!

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  8. I am way excited for your NYC race! Doing longer than 10K on the summer is rough! it is so hot on some days! There is the free 10K in Carlisle and a weird 10K in Harrisburg in August. Both really warm days1

    Right now, I'm planning races based on registration prices now... I'm signed up for a half in September that sells out in April, that one I need to plan early.

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    1. Thanks Ana. I'm planning to do some more races down your way!

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  9. There are practically zero races here from June-August with the exception of a 4th of July race and a random night time 5K here or there. Like you, I have a few races I know I'm going to run no matter what, but I do like to pick and choose new ones as they pop up and appeal to me.

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    1. I missed our local night time 5k this past year but I hope to this year!

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  10. I would love to do that Utah race but I'm already signed up for a local half marathon that same day. Maybe next year! Once of my best friends is moving to SLC in August so it would be a great race-cation destination.

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    1. Oh yea! There are so many bloggers running Utah this year that you should be able to find tons of race reviews to determine if it's one you would want to do next year!

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  11. I also dont really run more than one race a month. Utah sounds great but there's no way I could pull it off this year!

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    1. Yea, it's definitely a long trip from the East Coast!

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  12. I generally keep potential goal races for March-April or October-December. The rest. The year I mostly just do 5-10ks for fun :)

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    1. I've started to do a lot more 5K's and I'm loving them. a lot less to train for for sure!

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  13. I need to be better about how I plan my races. I end up doing most of them last minute LOL. And all of a sudden I'm realizing all the races are going to be done soon until the fall! Def need to plan better.. ;)

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    1. I guess it depends on which location you're looking to run in. Around here I could find a few races to do each month all the way till June!

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  14. This is so fascinating because your approach to race scheduling is totally different from mine. Bummed I won't see you in Utah!

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    1. I figure a race cation in the spring and a racecation in the fall is really all I need. There is so much going on here during the summer that I don't often want to leave the area.

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  15. Sounds like a good plan for the year! I need to sign up for something!

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    1. I haven't actually set my race plans yet for this year but I'm pretty sure I know what I'm doing for Spring at least.

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  16. Wow, you have such a great approach for races! I don't plan or do anything like this - I'm such a last minute race-signer-upper (I've signed up the day of at times) but i love that you have a plan.

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    1. I like to sign up before the price increases but there are a few local ones that I wait till the last minute!

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  17. wow I like the idea you've got a plan for the races. I think I'll make one for myself. It sounds interesting and more organized

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    1. I try. After several years I've determined when and where I like to race.

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  18. I've been traveling for Christmas vacation the past few years, and always manage to get sick with the flu or a cold. The Disney races can be fun, but I'm always worried about getting sick that time of year.

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    1. Christmas time is always such a hard time to travel for races since there is always so much going on. I always feel like I just want to savor time at home with family!

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  19. I don't really have rhyme or reason to my races. I do a lot of the local ones year after year, though. It's easy because they're close. :)

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    1. I am so glad that I discovered the local race scene here. I'm definitely looking forward to doing more local races!

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  20. When I used to plan them, like you I like quality. My idea was races around area's of interest so I could plan a vacation around the race. Some go for Disney, I go for National Parks, Monuments or outdoor adventure destinations, LOL
    This year, other than a very kind and generous person who I "won" an entry from for a half marathon, I am only planning one marathon, and hopefully a second and right now I am looking at New Mexico if I can find one during my fall break, LOL But after I graduate I plan on plotting and planning again to get the rest of the states on my marathon list knocked off!

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    1. New Mexico sounds fun. I hope you can make that one happen. I look forward to seeing which races you choose on the East Coast!

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  21. You and I have the same strategy when it comes to race planning ...I like your style. Yep, I'll be in Utah this June!!

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  22. Choosing races based on weather is smart and something I like to do, too. The Utah race sounds fun to me. Utah is so pretty!

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.