That’s right! From June 6-8, I’ll be at Boston College in Newton, Mass., for the inaugural Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival as part of the official blogging crew. (Read: They’re covering my race entries, hotel and some meals.) And me? I’ve got discount codes for you.
Why Heartbreak Hill? Boston College sits at the top of the famous Heartbreak Hill section of the Boston Marathon. It’s a rare chance for runners who aren’t yet fast enough to qualify for Boston, myself included, to run this storied stretch of road. Consider me pumped.
The weekend of races includes the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half Marathon on Sunday and the Runner’s World 5K and Runner’s World 10K on Saturday. For you challenge lovers, take on multiple races. The Five & Dime is back-to-back 5K and 10K races on Saturday; the Hat Trick has you run the 5K, 10K, and Half Marathon. All runners receive a finisher’s medal and shirt—tech for the half, event shirt for the 5K and 10K.
All three courses start at the Boston College campus. The 5K is a looped run around the college and Chestnut Hill Reservoir. The 10K and half marathon head west to Commonwealth Avenue and the hills of Newton, Mass. The 10K is an out-and-back run, as is the half-marathon, which also includes a large loop around the Brae Burn County Club. Miles 9.5 to 13 of the half cover the storied Heartbreak Hill section of the Boston Marathon, giving the race weekend its name. Read the rest of this entry →
Runners at the Marine Corps Marathon. (Photo: Cpl. Bryan G. Lett/US Marine Corp)
Still deciding what marathon you want to run in the next 12 months? I am! The 15 biggest marathons in the U.S. are a common place to start.
Over the last few months, I’ve been posting when lotteries and registrations open for many popular races, from large runDisney events to a small 7-miler in Key West, half-marathons in New York to major marathons all over the U.S. It’s always frustrating to discover a race you want to run is already sold-out.
So here’s how and when to register for America’s 15 biggest marathons. Some of them are even among the biggest marathons in the world. And guess what? Most of them sell out before race day.
Half-marathoners, keep in mind that many of these events have 13.1-mile races the same weekend. So if you don’t want to go 26.2, you’ve still got options.
Next up? The Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon & Half Marathon.
Registration opened today for the race weekend taking place November 14-16, 2014. Events include the marathon, half-marathon, and Zappos.com 1/2 of the Half, a 6.5-mile race that sold-out in 2013. A two-day Health & Fitness Expo with more than 100 vendors is free and open to the public.
So what makes the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon Weekend special? Why, running the Las Vegas Strip at night, of course. The marquee races start at 4:30 p.m. and finish at the base of the Mirage Volcano. Live bands line the course at every mile and runners can get married or renew vows at a Run-Thru Wedding Chapel. Not to be missed are the Running Elvi (yep, that’s Elvis plural), hundreds of runners who rock the race as The King, along with other costumed runners dressed as showgirls and other Vegas luminaries. Read the rest of this entry →
Though less famous than its bigger fall siblings like the TCS New York City Marathon, Bank of America Chicago Marathon and Marine Corps Marathon, the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon has the distinction of being a world-class fall marathon that you can simply register for. No complicated lotteries, no qualifying standards, no registration drama. So if you got shut out of any of the aforementioned lotteries, I recommend Philly as a great alternative. In fact, I’ve sung its praises to many a runner looking for a big city race with a small town feel.
Pausing for a photo opp just before a PR finish at the Philadelphia Marathon. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)
I ran the Philadelphia Marathon in 2012 to a 17-minute personal best. I would definitely call this a PR-course in general if you’re trained for a few hills. I ran that year with about a dozen friends and teammates, including my husband. Most of us walked away with personal best times. And it’s a race I would absolutely consider running again.
The Philadelphia Marathon 2014 weekend includes the marathon and half marathon on Sunday, November 23, the Rothman Institute 8K and Kids Fun Run on Saturday, November 22, and a two-day Health & Fitness Expo that’s free and open to the public on Friday, November 21, and Saturday, November 22. The race often sells out its 30,000 bibs, split between the three race distances, anywhere from a month to a few weeks before race day. More than 25,000 runners finished races in 2013 race, and organizers say 60,000 spectators came out to cheer them on. Read the rest of this entry →
It’s no surprise that runDisney’s Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend of races at Disneyland in California sold out in under 2 hours. Half marathons at Disneyland are especially popular, and the Avengers Half Marathon was sure to be no different.
But if you want to run the 5K on Saturday, November 15 or the half marathon on Sunday, November 16, you still can. Limited entries are available through the runDisney Charity Groups Program and runDisney Travel Provider Program.
Contact each group below individually to find out their requirements for joining their team. Charities may require a fundraising minimum and travel providers may require a travel package purchase. Each group offers guaranteed entry, discount hotel rates and other perks. Read the rest of this entry →
Runners, assemble. The time has come to register for the runDisney Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend. Registration for the inaugural event at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., opens Tuesday, March 25 at 12 p.m. Eastern. The race weekend is November 14-16, 2014.
The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend is themed around the Marvel universe and its stars: Captain America, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow, and Iron Man among others. The weekend will include a Half Marathon, 5K, Kids Races, Health & Fitness Expo, Pasta Party, and, of course, super hero themed entertainment and characters.
Captain America runs Disney. (Photo: runDisney)
If I was a betting woman, I’d bet on this one selling out quickly. The two existing Disneyland events have proven especially popular for runDisney.
The 2014 Tinker Bell Half Marathon, which took place on January 19, sold out its 15,000 race spots in less than two days.
And the 2014 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend, scheduled for August 28-31, had the quickest sell-out in runDisney history. All 35,500 of the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend‘s running bibs sold out within 12 hours and 13 minutes. The Dumbo Double Dare, where participants complete both the Disneyland 10K and Half Marathon on back-to-back days, filled up in just 41 minutes. The Disneyland 10K sold out in 53 minutes, followed by the runDisney Kids Races, which closed in 2 hours and 48 minutes. The Disneyland Half Marathon itself sold out in 9 hours and 20 minutes, while the Disneyland 5K closed in 12 hours and 13 minutes.
Holy hills! The Jerusalem Half Marathon is now behind me and 15,550 other runners who tackled 10K, half and marathon races at the Jerusalem Marathon. I ran the race as part of a press trip sponsored by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism in cooperation with El Al Airlines. About 4,680 runners took on the half-marathon with me, mostly men. The event as a whole is 71 percent male. The women’s running boom hasn’t quite happened in Israel yet, it seems.
It was spectacularly scenic and easily the most difficult course I’ve ever run. Ever. No seriously, I mean it. Every runner I talked to agreed, including folks who have run 20-50 road marathons around the world. There are probably courses that are as difficult. But it’s hard to imagine a tougher one far as city marathons and half-marathons go. This was a road race with a trail profile. Between the hills—never ending climbs up never ending hills followed by quad-crushing descents—and the turns—more than 40 of them over 13.1 miles—this is not a course to run a personal best. The marathon is no different.
But the scenery makes up for it. At the tops of those hills are views of the Old City, the new city and Jordan in the distance. Around those turns are historic sites, charming neighborhoods and, sometimes, more hills.
So I sat back, relaxed, and enjoyed the ride…or at least the running equivalent. I haven’t even looked up my official time because I really don’t care. I ran with a GoPro camera, stopped and shot video, took pictures and just enjoyed the gorgeous course. My good friend, triathlon partner in crime, and Canadian journalist Tania, was there with me. One look at the photos, and you’ll see why we’re friends.
So here’s a sneak peak at the event. My full race report—with the nitty gritty details on the race, organization, course, and my experience of it all—is still to come when I get home from the trip!
I won’t be racing this one, but instead want to take in the sights and sounds of the city. In my three days on the ground here, I’ve seen both sides of Jerusalem: serious and silly, somber and sublime. The photo above reflects the gravitas of Jerusalem. The one below, its goofy side.
I’ve met Muslims, Christians and Jews, runners and non-runners, many of whom have been delightfully candid in their views of life, politics, religion and the collision of them all in this spectacular setting. And it is spectacular.
But I’ll leave all that for another day. Tonight I sleep. Tomorrow I explore the city in yet another way—through the lens of running. Of course, there is much more to come.
Runners storm Times Square at the NYC Half. (Credit: Courtesy of NYRR)
Reminder: The 2014 TCS New York City Marathon application closes today, Tuesday, March 18, at 11:59 p.m. EDT. If you want to apply for the random draw, visit tcsnycmarathon.org before then. The drawing will take place Wednesday, March 26.
The 2014 NYC Half on Sunday, March 16 was the race’s biggest year yet with 20,750 finishers, its first professional wheelchair race and a newly enhanced course. I was on the scene with NYRR’s On The Run at the NYC Half.
2014 NYC Half Champions Sally Kipyego and Geoffrey Mutai. (Photo: PhotoRun/NYRR)
Two-time defending New York City Marathon champion Geoffrey Mutai of Kenya took home the title in the men’s race. Half-marathon debutante Sally Kipyego, also of Kenya, set an event record on her way to win the women’s race.
The race was not without drama, starting with a chilly 31-degree temp and 18 mph winds. Then Great Britain’s Mo Farah, a favorite to battle Mutai for the win, fell before the 10K mark. He rallied to finish in second place, but as the top three men gathered to take a photo right after the finish, Farah passed out.
In my finisher’s blanket warming up.
I was standing by to interview the top three men, and watched the whole thing unfold. Medics rushed to his side, trying to revive and warm him. I was wearing a long, down coat between stints on camera. So I handed my coat to the folks tending to Farah. A few others did the same. When Farah finally came to, the medic put my coat on him as they took him to the medical tent. So the crew gave me a finisher’s heat sheet to keep me warm for the next few hours until my coat made its way back to me.
But rather than tell you all about the race, I’ll let you watch.
Here is the professional race recap, a follow-up on all the runners we profiled earlier in the week, a profile of winner Sally Kipyego, and the inspiring story of Jessica Mar, who went from 268 lbs. to 128 lbs and a 1:50 half-marathon in just two years. Watch and enjoy!
On The Run at 2014 NYC Half Professional Race Recap
Double Olympic and World Champion Mo Farah. (Photo: NYRR On The Run)
Today we’ve got four more running videos from On The Run at NYC Half 2014: A former Marine who continues to serve his country and three of the top pros to watch on Sunday. Each one is about two to three minutes long, so watch and enjoy! And be sure to check out our recap of the race on Sunday evening.
Former Marine Brian Gallagher has raised over $60,000 for wounded veteran organizations. Now he’s running the NYC Half for Hope For The Warriors.
Mo Farah is at the top of the sport. The double Olympic and World Champion is back to regain his 2011 title at the NYC Half on his way to his first marathon in London in April.
American record holder Molly Huddle is making her half-marathon debut at the NYC Half.
Paralympian Amanda McGrory leads the field for the first profession wheelchair race at the NYC Half.
You can find every episode of On The Run online at ontherun.nyrr.org and and youtube.com/nyrrvideo. Watch the NYC Half 2014 marathon on Sunday, March 16 live in the New York City metropolitan area on ABC-TV from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. EDT. You can also watch the race at 7online.com from 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. EDT, or WatchABC on mobile devices from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. EDT. WatchESPN subscribers can also watch the race from 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
For more On The Run at NYC Half 2014 videos check out:
Mike Cassidy cross the 2013 New York City Marathon Finish with Meb Keflezighi. (Photo: NYRR On The Run)
Mike Cassidy is one of New York City’s top local elite runners. I’ve had the chance to interview the Staten Island native three times now: after he won the 2013 Staten Island Half, after he finished the 2013 New York City Marathon hand-in-hand with Meb Keflezighi, and now in preparation for the NYC Half. He qualified for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials with a 2:18 marathon, and yet he’s just a regular guy going to graduate school while training hard.
Among the many things that impress me about Mike is that he has an amazing outlook on running and on life. If you haven’t read his LetsRun.com essay, “The Time of My Life,” you should. Now he puts it into words, and what the marathon moment meant to him, for On The Run.
Goodwill Industries is best known for its retail stores, as name checked by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis in the mega-hit “Thrift Shop.” But the non-profit uses the proceeds from those stores to spread a whole lot of good will, including at the NYC Half.
Goodwill will collect discarded clothing at the start of the race, which will then be sold at Goodwill stores throughout the New York metro areas. Every 91 cents the organization collects goes to fund their job creation programs, including finding workers to stuff the 23,000 NYC Half finisher recovery bags and staff fluid stations along the course. It was really incredible to visit the Goodwill warehouse and see just how much they do. This is just a tiny glimpse.
We’re back! I’ve been filming with NYRR On The Run since Monday for the 2014 NYC Half marathon which takes place Sunday, March 16. We’ve got a week full of stories about professional athletes, charity runners and lots more. Instead of 30-minute episodes, we’re releasing each story as a stand-alone video. So the best way to catch them all is to subscribe to NYRR’s YouTube Channel. I’ll post them all here on RunKarlaRun.com, as well.
With Knox Robinson of Black Roses NYC (Photo: nyrr_ontherun Instagram)
It’s been an awesome week so far. I’ve been to Goodwill Industries’ New York headquarters in Queens where they’re assembling goodie bags for runners after the finish; Battery Park at the tip of Manhattan with local elite runner Mike Cassidy who finished the 2013 New York City Marathon hand in hand with Meb Keflezighi; on the High Line park on Manhattan’s West Side with Fred’s Team runner Regina Romain; out to a middle school in New Jersey where teacher Mike Anderson and guidance counselor Dana Ash are running in honor of one of their students; and to the East Village in Manhattan where the Black Roses running crew trains under the cloak of night.
I’ll also be heading to the expo, catching up with a few other runners and covering the course on race day to capture all the action. My co-host Carrie Tollefson will also be chatting with pros like Mo Farah, Molly Huddle, and Sally Kipyego. And we’ll bring you a recap of the entire event after the race. Read the rest of this entry →
Chef Mickey and Minnie greeted runners at the finish of Disney’s Wine and Dine Half Marathon on Nov. 9, 2013. (Photo: runDisney)
Registration for the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend from November 8-9 at Walt Disney World in Florida opens Tuesday, March 4 at 12 p.m. EST.
It’s no secret that the Wine and Dine Half Marathon is my favorite half marathon. I ran the 2013 race as part of a press trip sponsored by New Balance and runDisney. In 2011, the event was my first runDisney race and where my husband proposed. So it will always be a sentimental favorite.
But that’s not the only reason I love this race. Marriage proposals aside, it has the best post-race party I’ve ever been to, at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival.
The Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon starts at 10 p.m. outside the ESPN Wine World of Sports Complex and takes runners through Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, past Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts, and finally to the finish at Epcot.
Once there, runners can party until 4 a.m. with Epcot all to themselves. Admission to the Finish Line party is included in race registration, along with a $10 Disney gift card and a complimentary beer, wine or soda at the finish.
My husband and me with the real Aladdin and Jasmine. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)
Friends and family can also buy tickets to the Finish Line Party, where select Epcot attractions like Test Track and Soarin’ remain open into the wee hours. The party also includes all the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kiosks, live bands, DJs, and meet and greets with Disney characters. My husband and I got a photo with Aladdin and Jasmine while we were dressed as Aladdin and Jasmine at the 2013 race. In 2011, we photographed ourselves around the world. Read the rest of this entry →
But I had yet to decide if I would use the race as a sub-2 hour half-marathon personal record attempt or a training run for a PR attempt later in the spring.
This is how I felt after the Newport Liberty Half Marathon. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)
Well, I’ve decided.
While the runs I’ve been doing indicate that I am in or near PR shape, I haven’t put in the mileage I’d like to. Rather than have another crash and burn attempt, like my run at the DirectEdge Newport Liberty Half Marathon in the fall, I’d rather keep training, get my mileage up and use the race as a hilly, long run. Then I’ll target another race in April or early May as my big PR attempt.
1) It took me longer to get over jet lag than I would have liked. It was a 6-hour time difference and took me four full days to adjust to the point where I didn’t want to take a nap every moment of every day. Jerusalem is a 7-hour time difference and I’ll have been there for three days before I toe the line. I don’t want to get my heart set on a PR when my body will likely be dazed and confused. Unfortunately, I’m just one of those people who needs lots of sleep.
This trail through the Apls proved slippery for running without traction. (Photo: RunKarlaRun)
2) I meant to run every day on my trip. I really did. But I forgot to pack my Yaktrax. Crucial mistake. In the Austrian ski town of Sankt Anton am Arlberg, where I spent most of the trip, the roads weren’t even remotely safe for running—no shoulder, no sidewalk, steep inclines covered in ice, blind turns, and ski buses speeding by.
Trails abounded, but they were covered in packed snow and ice. I went for one run on a gorgeous trail intended precisely for walking and running, but it was so icy it took me 80 minutes to cover 4.5 miles. After nearly wiping out three times, I realized baby steps were the only way I’d get through the run.
But I cross-trained galore throwing in curling, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, downhill skiing and swimming at my hotel pool.
3) I came home from the trip with a mystery pain under the ball of my left foot. I don’t notice it at all while walking. But it was bad enough that I curtailed my first run at home after just a mile and hopped on the bike instead. I did three more runs of increasing mileage, but still felt the pain lurking, especially on the road more so than the treadmill. I’m guessing I bruised a bone or something. I’ve been babying it in case it’s something more serious. Read the rest of this entry →
I’m not the fastest runner and I’m not the slowest, but I am a running nerd. A journalist by trade, I love to research, read, learn and cogitate. So stick with me. Like all good nerds, I’ll do the homework and share it. But the running is up to you!