Irina Mashkantceva wins the 2012 Philadelphia Marathon. (Philadelphia Marathon)
It’s official. I’m running the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon 2014 on Sunday, November 23! I’d been debating which marathon, if any, to run this fall and I’ve finally committed to running Philly as a guest of sponsor GORE-TEX.
While I considered—and was invited to—a few other marathons in the U.S. and Canada, I decided on Philly for a few reasons.
Pausing for a photo just before a PR finish at the 2012 Philadelphia Marathon. (RunKarlaRun.com)
2) Redemption: I feel like I have unfinished business in Philadelphia. Back in 2012, I’d been zipping along on target for a 4:14 finish when a quad cramp struck after the 20-mile mark and decided to linger. I lost 14 minutes in the last 10K, as I stopped to stretch the cramp a few times, jogging slowly in between. While I was ecstatic about my finish time, a new personal best, I knew I had even more in me. I want to return to Philly and run the time I should have two years ago: 4:15. Read the rest of this entry →
Melissa Hernandez wins the 2014 Tinker Bell Half Marathon. (Jimmy DeFlippo/runDisney)
Registration for the 2015 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend opens Tuesday, August 12 at 12 p.m. EST. The women-focused race weekend will take place from May 7-10 at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California. The race is the fourth largest women’s running event in the U.S. with 11,948 finishers in 2013 and 13,143 finishers in 2014.
2015 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend
Runners get their Tink on. (runDisney)
In addition to the title half marathon, the 2015 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend also includes the new Pixie Dust Challenge, Never Land 5K, Tinker Bell 10K and runDisney Kids Races. Courses for the weekend’s races run through Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure Park and the streets of Anaheim with music, entertainment and Disney characters, not to mention thousands of costumed runners.
The runDisney Health and Fitness Expo is free and open to the public Thursday, May 7 through Saturday, May 9. That’s where runners pick-up their bibs and race gear, can find official runDisney merchandise along with the coveted runDisney New Balance shoes, other retailers showcasing running apparel and products, and a speaker series with tips for training, racing and eating before the big day.
A ticketed Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend Pasta Party takes place inside Disney California Adventure on Friday, May 8 with a buffet dinner, Disney characters and other entertainment.
Runners who register for the challenge and complete both the Tinker Bell 10K on Saturday, May 9 and the Tinker Bell Half Marathon on Sunday, May 10 earn a fairy-themed medal in addition to a medal for each race. To qualify for the medal, you must register for the Pixie Dust Challenge itself and not the Tinker Bell Half Marathon and Tinker Bell 10K individually. Read the rest of this entry →
Have you ever had a running gait analysis? I now have video of mine thanks to Nike Running.
On Sunday, October 19, I’ll be running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco! I’ll be attending the race courtesy of Nike as part of a media group. Along with the race, they’re helping me train and gear up for the event. Excited? You bet!
To help me gear up for the race, I got fit for shoes at the Nike Running store in New York City’s Flatiron district. I’ve had my gait analyzed four times before at various running stores and in physical therapy. I have it checked periodically in case my form has changed dramatically since I’ve gotten faster, been diagnosed with arthritis, injured my hip in a horseback riding fall, and all the other things that affect how I run.
But year after year, gait analysis shows I’m a steadfast neutral shoe runner. This time I have video proof.
Runners get their Tink on at the Tinker Bell Half Marathon. (runDisney)
You asked, runDisney answered. Disney’s running branch today announced the addition of the Pixie Dust Challenge to the 2015 Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland in Anaheim, California from May 7-10.
Yet, race challenges have proven especially popular among runDisney fans, often selling out first among each weekend’s events. The 2015 Glass Slipper Challenge filled up first in 1 hour and 45 minutes despite technical difficulties when registration opened for the Disney Princess Half Marathon and the 2015 Rebel Challenge reached capacity in just 25 minutes before any other Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend event. Read the rest of this entry →
Missed out on registration for the Disney Princess Half Marathon 2015 presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, including the sold-out Glass Slipper Challenge and Enchanted 10K? Limited bibs are available via charity and tour groups. Runners must register directly through the groups listed below to participate in those three events from February 19-22 at Walt Disney World in Florida.
Frozen’s Elsa makes an appearance at the Princess Half. (runDisney)
Regular registration is still available for the Disney Princess 5K and runDisney Kids Races, both of which will feature a Frozen theme and finisher medals. At publication time, the 5K was 65 percent full and the kids races were 55 percent sold.
Tickets are also still available for the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Breakfast and Pasta in the Park Party, both on Friday and Saturday, and the Race Retreat on Sunday. Though the Race Retreat and Breakfast are each 52 percent full. Free, non-ticketed events include the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo from Thursday through Saturday and the Happily Ever After Party at Downtown Disney on Sunday.
The Glass Slipper Challenge, where runners complete the Enchanted 10K and Disney Princess Half Marathon on back-to-back days, sold out first in 1 hour and 45 minutes after an hour of technical problems between runDisney.com and the Active.com registration system. Registration opened at 12 p.m. ET on July 15. At 12:34, runDisney posted on Twitter: Read the rest of this entry →
Here’s what runDisney has planned for 2015, including a Frozen themed 5K and Kids Races with medals to match.
Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend
Disney Princess Half Marathon
Disney Princess Enchanted 10K
Disney Glass Slipper Challenge
Disney Princess 5K themed to Frozen
runDisney Kids Races themed to Frozen
Other race options include:
Coast-to-Coast Race Challenge
Disney Castaway Cay Challenge
The Disney Princess Half Marathon takes runners from Epcot to Magic Kingdom and back, including a run through Cinderella Castle. The 10K, 5K courses and Kids Races go through Epcot.
The weekend also includes the Happily Ever After Party in Downtown Disney—a post-race celebration on Sunday—and the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex from Thursday through Saturday. Both events are free and open to the public.
The weekend’s ticketed events include the Pasta in the Park Party on Friday and Saturday nights in Epcot with a buffet pasta dinner, Disney character Meet & Greets, DJ, face painter and a reserved viewing spot for “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth,” a light, laser, and fireworks show; the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Breakfast on Friday and Saturday after the 5K and 10K, respectively; and VIP Race Retreat Packages, which give runners access to a suite of pre- and post-race amenities. Read the rest of this entry →
The pretty in pink “dress for Cinderelly,” as the mice sing, sounded perfect to me. I’ve always loved the dress the mice made with love, crafted from Cinderella’s mother’s gown. It’s a dress fit for a princess.
Pretty in Pink!
How To Make The Cinderella Pink Dress
Registration opens Tuesday, July 15 at noon EST for the 2015 Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend. If you want to put together your own Cinderella pink dress for the race, here’s my step-by-step “How To” turn this basic skirt and tank…
Basic tank and skirt (RunKarlaRun.com)
into this Cinderella pink dress!
Gather all the pieces for the costume. I have zero background in sewing, so the sewing tools I used were:
Heartbreak Hill Half medals. (Photo: Grace Donnelly)
The Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival from June 5-8, 2014 in Newton and Boston, Massachusetts felt a lot like running camp. But the titular half-marathon lived up to its name: it was a bit heartbreaky and a bit hilly. And I loved almost every minute of it.
Taking the Heartbreak Hill Half seriously. (Photo: @myEPevents, Inc)
I attended the race courtesy of Runner’s World as part of their official blogger crew. (They covered my race entries, dorm room and some meals. I covered my transportation to and from Boston and other meals.)
The race was a chance to run along the most famous section of Boston Marathon course. For Boston Marathon qualifiers and hopefuls, it was a chance to test their legs on the storied climb. For runners like me—for whom qualifying for Boston is a distant “someday” dream—it was a chance to know exactly what all those faster runners are talking about when they dismiss Heartbreak Hill as “not that bad” or confirm its notoriety as “brutal.” I’ve heard the hill described both ways and was excited to find out for myself.
Roughly 6,700 finishers from 47 U.S. states ran in the 5K, 10K, half-marathon, kids’ run and dog run at the weekend. Exactly 3,074 runners finished the half-marathon; 1,838 completed the 10K; 1,565 crossed the line in the 5K, and 69 doggies finished the Eukanuba Dog Run.
The post-race festival. (Photo: Brita Meng Outzen)
There’s too much for me to cover in one post, so I’ll share all my doings at the race over the next few weeks. I already covered the Runner’s World 5K, Expo, Festival programming, on-campus accommodations and blogger crew in Race Report: Runner’s World 5K at Heartbreak Hill Half.
The Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half & Festival from June 5-8, 2014 in Newton and Boston, Massachusetts was a genuine celebration of running. I attended the race courtesy of Runner’s World as part of their official blogger crew. (They covered my race entries, dorm room and some meals. I covered my transportation to and from Boston and other meals.)
Running the 5K. (Photo: @myEPevents, Inc)
Roughly 6,700 finishers from 47 U.S. states ran in the 5K, 10K, half-marathon, kids’ run and dog run. Exactly 3,074 runners finished the half-marathon; 1,838 completed the 10K; 1,565 crossed the line in the 5K, and 69 doggies finished the Eukanuba Dog Run.
Something about the weekend made it feel like running camp. Maybe it was because I was staying on Boston College’s campus in a dorm. Maybe it was the programming, including seminars, movies, meet and greets with runners like Shalane Flanagan and Sarah Reinertsen, an expo and pasta party. Maybe it was the five races and two race challenges that started and finished on campus.
Whatever it was, it added up to a weekend where I lived, ate and breathed running—in a good way.
Boston College has that leafy New England campus vibe that makes you want to sprawl across a green lawn and sing folk songs in a circle. It reminded me of my undergrad experience attending Amherst College in Massachusetts, just a 90 minute drive due west.
Runners tackle the race. (Photo: Grace Donnelly)
One evening, a group of us bloggers sat on the grass whiling an hour away. We spotted Bart Yasso walking to the dorm and waved him over. He sat with us and chatted a while. The whole weekend had that kind of feel—friendly and relaxed. Everywhere you looked, there was someone running, about to run, just finished running or talking about running.
It’s finally up: the full episode of “On The Run at the 2014 NYRR Brooklyn Half,” hosted by yours truly. It aired on ABC in New York on May 31, 2014. So if you missed it or live outside the New York metro area, check out New York Road Runners’ show from America’s biggest half-marathon with 25,646 finishers.
On The Run at the 2014 Brooklyn Half
The focus of this show is less, “Who will win?” and more, “How much fun will everyone have?”
We go on a running tour of the course in the days before the race, meet a variety of Brooklyn locals from a first-time half-marathoner to a runner gunning for a top 10 finish, party it up at the Brooklyn Half Pre-Party presented by New Balance, bike through north Brooklyn and capture all the excitement of race day from the finish on the Coney Island Boardwalk.
Watch the full episode that aired on ABC above or take a look at a few of the show’s segments broken out from the full episode, below. Read the rest of this entry →
Registration for the inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend presented by Sierra Nevada Corporation opens at 12 p.m. EDT on June 10, 2014. The Disney half marathon race weekend will take place January 15-18, 2015 at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif. Events include the Star Wars Half Marathon, Star Wars 10K, Star Wars 5K and runDisney Kids Races, plus the Star Wars Rebel Challenge. Runners who register for the challenge and complete the 10K and half marathon on back-to-back days will earn an extra medal. Like every Disney half marathon, the weekend will also feature a runDisney Health and Fitness Expo, along with Star Wars Wookie Welcome Party and more Star Wars and Disney-themed entertainment. Course maps have yet to be released, but the races will run through Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Downtown Disney and the streets of Anaheim, Calif. Read the rest of this entry →
Registration for the 2014 Nike Women Half Marathon San Francisco random draw opened Wednesday, June 4 at 11 a.m. PDT. Runners have until 11 a.m. on June 19 PDT to register for a chance at being one of the 25,000 runners expected on October 19.
The half marathon is the focus at the 2014 Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco. (Photo: Nike)
For the 11th year of the world’s largest women-focused race, Nike has decided to forgo the marathon distance and concentrate on the half.
“Due to runners’ feedback over the past few years, we have decided to only offer a half marathon,” reads numerous responses to runner inquires on the race’s Facebook page. “But we are dedicated to bring you one of the best Nike Women’s Half Marathons yet!”
The Nike Women’s Marathon and Half Marathon San Francisco debuted in 2004 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the first Olympic women’s marathon in 1984, won by American Joan Benoit Samuelson. The Nike Women’s Marathon and Half Marathon went on to become the largest women’s running event in the world. More than 30,000 runners finished races at the event in 2013. More than 26,000 of them ran the half marathon. Read the rest of this entry →
In two weeks from today I’ll be at the start of the Runner’s World Heartbreak Hill Half in Newton, Mass. The race will be my third half marathon in 2014, but my first attempt at a sub 2 hour half marathon this year. My current half marathon personal best stands at 2:00:30 from the 2012 Staten Island Half. Breaking “2” is the one running goal that has eluded me time and time again. It has become my Everest.
On Saturday, I finished my last long run before the big race. I ran 12.15 miles total, with 10 of them in Central Park’s rolling hills at a 9:40 pace overall. My goal half marathon pace is 9:00, which would bring me in at 1:58. A sub 2 hour half marathon pace is 9:10. I’m absolutely within striking distance.
I don’t like that I had two 10:13 miles as I climbed one of Central Park’s steepest hills twice during miles one and five. But I like that I was at least consistent over said hill. And I love that my last mile was my fastest.
My goals for the race are:
A) Run a sub 2 hour half marathon
B) Run a personal record, which means besting 2:00:30
C) Run as hard as I can, whatever time that means
My “A” goal is a sub 2 hour finish! (Photo: morgueFile)
I know I have the speed in me to finally break 2 hours. I’m much faster than when I set my current half-marathon PR. My long runs have been consistently 30 to 40 seconds faster per mile than they were in fall 2012. And I’ve since lowered my 5K and 10 PRs by two minutes and three minutes, respectively.
But I’m just not sure I have the endurance I’d like to have at this point in the season. Going into the Staten Island Half, my longest run was a 16-miler since I was in the middle of marathon training. Going into this race, my longest run was yesterday’s 12.15-miler, with just 10 of them at speed. The other 2.15 miles were an easy warm-up and cool down. Do I have 13.1 fast miles in me? That remains to be seen. Read the rest of this entry →
The Tunnel of Trees at the Kauai Marathon & Half Marathon. (Photo: Phil Hospod)
Looking for destination races? Check out my three latest stories at Shape.com. I picked 10 women’s races, 10 wine races and 10 beach races worth booking a ticket for. Many of them aren’t even single race weekends, but running series with multiple events all over the U.S. and around the world. In all, these 30 running events have 60 race weekends among them, and even more distances to choose from. Let the day dreaming begin!
Runners toast their efforts at the Wine Country Half Marathon Series (Photo: TJ Nelson/Destination Races)
The 30-year-old Marathon du Medoc in France may be the grandfather of wine races, with tasting stations along the course and wine-fueled parties all weekend long. But you don’t have to travel to France to guzzle grape at destination races that stomp through vineyards on the way to wine-fueled feasts. Events all over North America, from 5Ks to marathons, cater to wine lovers who like to run hard and drink harder.
I picked 10 wine running series with 20 races in 10 U.S. states and Canadian provinces for runners who like to cool down with vino. See them all at Shape.com.
The Southernmost Marathon, Half-Marathon and 10K in Key West. (Photo: Marrero/Doll Photography)
Run and sun under a palm tree at these courses for sand and shore lovers. From Jamaica and the Bahamas to the South Pacific and coast of Australia, these dream-worthy destinations have races to match. Want to surf in California? Party during Carnival in France? Hula in Hawaii? Get lost in the Bermuda triangle? You can, and run too. Read the rest of this entry →
The Brooklyn Half Finish (Photo: nyrr_ontherun/Instagram)
With 25,587 finishers, the NYRR Brooklyn Half Marathon 2014 on Saturday, May 17 surpassed the OneAmerica 500 Festival in Indiana with its 25,521 to become the largest half-marathon in the U.S.
The Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco on October 19, 2014 is likely the only half-marathon with the potential to unseat it.
In 2013, the top five largest half-marathons in the U.S., according to Running USA, were:
1) OneAmerica 500 Festival, Indiana: 30,059 finishers
2) Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco, California: 26,406 finishers
3) Walt Disney World Half Marathon, Florida: 23,148 finishers
4) Disney Princess Half Marathon, Florida: 22,739 finishers
5) NYRR Brooklyn Half Marathon, New York: 21,427 finishers
Rounding out the top 10 in 2013 were five Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series races with 18,000-21,000 finishers: Las Vegas, USA (Washington, D.C.), Philadelphia, San Diego and Nashville.
For 2014, here are the standings. Of the previous top five, only the Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco has yet to be run:
1) NYRR Brooklyn Half Marathon, New York: 25,587 finishers
2) OneAmerica 500 Festival, Indiana: 25,521 finishers
3) Disney Princess Half Marathon, Florida: 20,777 finishers
4) Walt Disney World Half Marathon, Florida: 20,284 finishers
5) St. Jude Country Music Half Marathon, Tennessee: 19,149 finishers
Goofin’ at the start. (Photo: nyrr_ontherun/Instagram)
Brooklyn Half On TV
Befitting such a big race, I spent Brooklyn Half race day at the start outside the Brooklyn Museum and the finish on the Coney Island Boardwalk with “NYRR On the Run” filming a TV episode for ABC in New York. All week long, we ran around Brooklyn and the Brooklyn Half Pre-Party presented by New Balance catching all the action from race week.
Until then, here are some photos from my week. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the Brooklyn Half is one of my absolute favorite races of the year. I love the pre-party, the course and the vibe. The race was my first half-marathon back in 2010, and I cheered on friends in 2011 and 2012. Now I’ve reported from the Brooklyn Half two years running with “NYRR On The Run” and it’s always a highlight of my year. 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!