Know what’s more exhausting than running multiple long runs in a week? Walking around the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry for an entire day. Don’t get me wrong – it was absolutely amazing. But we got back to the hotel and I really wanted to go to bed at 7pm. Today we will hit the Shedd Aquarium and maybe some part of Field Museum, so I need to be ready to do it all again. I think I’m going to spend all day Wednesday sleeping.
Given that I’m exhausted, I’d say racing is the farthest thing from my mind, but today’s topic for Tuesdays on the Run is “dream race”. Join Patty, April, and me and tell us what makes a race “dreamy” for you. (Bonus points if it’s a real race and I can go run it. )
Here are the top 5 things I’d include in a dream race:
1. Easy access and well-run packet pickup – Nothing drives me crazier than difficult to get to expo location or lines that last for hours. In my dream race, there’d be parking right by the venue and I’d walk in and have my bib and shirt within 5 minutes.
2. Easy parking right by the start/finish line or plenty of reasonably priced hotels nearby. Having a hotel room where I can walk out of the lobby 10 minutes before the start would be about perfect.
3. An awesome location. I don’t care much about the course – I tend to get inside my head and miss all of the cool sites anyways. I just want a neat place to visit before and after I run.
4. Perfect weather. Hey, it’s my race, I get to decide. I’m so tired of really cold or rainy races. I want cool and sunny. Somewhere between 45 and 60 sounds good to me.
5. Good beer. You totally knew that was coming. I want a craft beer at the end and I want options. I’m not a lager girl and I don’t drink Budmilloor beers (seriously, I’d rather have water than a beer I don’t like.)
Notice that I made no mention of the bling or the t-shirts. I like medals and appreciate an attractive one, but really, it’s just going up on my wall, so it’s not a huge selling point for me. As for the t-shirt, I don’t really care. I don’t generally wear cotton race t-shirts and I have more tech tees than I know what to do with.
What would you look for in a dream race? Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for the full details on our Rock Your Core challenge!!!
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15 thoughts on “TOTR: Race of my dreams”
Reasonable hotels and an awesome location would be on my list too! I love planning a trip for after the race more than the race itself. The restaurants and things to see and do are big selling points for me too when picking a race.
I’ve noticed that race series are popping up, centered around breweries and craft beer. Texas is starting to get them and I know Colorado has a 5k series.
location, location, location. Although I assume it’s run extremely well considering its longevity
Big Sur International Marathon
Pls, pls, pls
We have a lot of the same dream race ideas! Medals and shirts aren’t a huge draw for me either, though it is nice when the shirt is an actual women’s-cut shirt. I want to do the race series around breweries mentioned in the comment above!!
Oh wow you’re in Chicago! Sorry the weather is so gray but it could be far worse! Agree a reasonable hotel is awesome for races. Need to find some for these RnR’s I’m planning on.
I am sure your dream race out there exists! I just am not sure what race that might be exactly. I agree with you…I’d rather have a bottle of water than a crappy beer post race!
I totally agree with the parking/hotel issue! I’m already dreading that about my race coming up in Lincoln Nebraska. There aren’t any reasonably priced hotels near the start, so we’re struggling a bit with logistics of getting me to the race start early when we’ll only have one car and we’ll have my 3 year old. Nobody is looking forward to waking him up that early to drag him out just to drop me off!
Easy access and packet pick up is huge. That can always make or break a race. A complimentary beer at the end of a race doesn’t hurt either.
Perfect weather and parking availability are top on my list! 5 weeks till Ragnar 🙂
I’m with you on ALL counts. I’ve gotten where I don’t really care about an expo. Just give me my bib, please. In my post, I mention new smooth pavement. Cause that’s where I’m always looking!
Chicago is one of my very favorite cities. All the museums are just amazing!! We’re total museum geeks in my house! I do love being able to walk to the start of a race. At Gasparilla, the host hotel was just a five minute walk from the starts which was absolutely perfect both for getting to the start line AND getting back from the finish!
I’m with you on the packet pick-up and parking – The Reston 10 Miler is great for that around here.
Your top 5 look good to me. Most of my races are run at a Disney Park, where numbers 1, 2 and 4 can be tricky. While your perfect streamlined race sounds VERY attractive, for me the magic is a magnet!
Great topic and I love your 5 points! Here are mine:
– Chip timed, with live tracking and frequent splits for longer races
– Plenty of porta potties– a 10:1 porta potty to runner ratio. 1 porta potty for every 10 runners. 🙂
– Accurately measured course, with a minimal number of curves and turns
– Weather: Below 55 degrees, no rain
– For larger races, corrals with qualifying times and strict enforcement
I love all of the things you listed that make up the “perfect race!” I don’t really care about the medals either, but I love a cute race shirt! Most of the ones I’ve gotten are NOT cute, but once in a while I’ll get one that I love!