Running towards an out-of-state marathon
Running marathons is a growing trend in the United States, as many people have turned to running as their preferred form of exercise. Running towards a goal makes it easier to stay focused and encourages distance training. Although most states have at least one big marathon that happens once each year, runners sometimes choose to travel to an out-of-state marathon. There are several reasons this is becoming an increasingly popular choice.
It’s easy to back out of a local marathon, but paying for and planning travel for an out-of-state trip is a pretty big commitment. Runners often find that setting such concrete plans provides great motivation for staying on track with their training leading up to the marathon. Additionally, many big marathons have support groups that runners can join to give them training buddies and people to help keep them accountable.
Runners who are just getting started training can burn out, especially as the distance of their training runs increases. With a reward on the horizon, however, extended training often generates excitement that makes it much easier to stick to a schedule. In fact, runners who have a great out-of-state marathon to look forward to often enjoy their training more because they know each step is bringing them closer to the big day.
Running in the same places every week can get boring and a marathon in a well-known area can make the 26.2 miles more arduous than necessary. An out-of-state marathon offers completely new scenery, which makes the run itself a lot of fun. Racers find themselves looking forward to what they’ll get to discover around every turn on the course, adding a fresh perspective to the activity.
Rather than running the same local marathon every year, runners often enjoy adding another completed marathon to their lists. Some even set a goal of running a marathon in every state during their lifetime or of running a marathon every month for the next year. Out-of-state marathons help people accomplish these types of goals, and, at the very least, give participants one more race T-shirt to add to their collection.
Traveling to an out-of-state marathon isn’t just about the run itself. When those hours are over, runners get to reward themselves with a mini-trip to a fun city. For example, the Chicago Marathon is one of the biggest in the United States, right behind the New York City Marathon. After completing the run that snakes through the lakefront city, runners get to enjoy Chicago hotels, shopping and some of the cultural events the city has to offer. Getting to visit the Adler Planetarium, Shedd Aquarium, Water Tower Place and see a theater show are all great rewards for a job well done.
After deciding it’s worth it to travel to an out-of-state marathon, the biggest challenge remaining to runners is to pick which marathon. In addition to Chicago and New York, runners can choose from the scenic Honolulu Marathon, the challenging Pike’s Peak Marathon, legendary Boston Marathon or San Diego’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. Most urban areas have marathons that traverse a city’s well-known areas or runners can opt for more rural marathons in Napa Valley or Big Sur. Each race has its perks, encouraging runners who can’t choose to compete in several marathons.