Why Attend a Bolt Race?
For the Total Experience! You put a lot into your running and you should get the most that you can out of it. Whether you’re a novice just trying to get started, or a competitor trying for a PR, a Bolt Series run has it all: USATF sanction, race packet full of extra amenities,high quality T shirt, pre-race dinner with presentation from a former world class and Hall Of Fame runner, exhibits, three runs to choose from, well planned courses, chip timing, unique awards, and after crossing the finish line you can help yourself to plenty of food and beverages and join a party with a live band!
How To Choose a Running Event That Is Right For You
The sport of running is at an all time high, and everyone – from beginner to competitive – wants to enjoy the fun of being in a “race”! there’s excitement, the thrill of the starting gun and crossing the finish line, and then the sheer pleasure of meandering around with hundreds or thousands of peers who are also on this running journey in life.
So, its no wonder that there are a plethora of running events to choose from. So, where do you start? How do you know which race to tackle? Here are The Top Seven Points top consider when selecting a race:
- Distance – what are you training for, a 5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon, or are you just getting started and want to “jump in” to something to get a taste and maybe just do a 1 mile fun run? Your training should dictate the distance. And remember not to overdo it. Running should be a fun way to get healthy and trying to tackle a half marathon or marathon when you’re not ready can set you back physically and emotionally.
- Terrain – consider both hills and course composition. A hilly course will give you a better workout and can sometimes be fun, but you’ll likely have a slower time. Similarly, running on pavement will get you a better time and be safer for your foot plant, but trails can be a fun change of pace.
- Location – how far are you willing to travel? Maybe there’s a perfect event 200 miles away, while there’s one not so perfect 15 minutes from your home. Extra travel will mean extra cost, but it can add to the excitement, as well. What are you trying to accomplish and when?
- Season – if you’re running 5K’s and even 10K’s, you should be able to run in all four seasons. But if you’re trying to PR in a marathon, you really have to be selective. If you’re prone to allergies, don’t choose a marathon in the spring. Obviously, too, if you don’t do well in the heat, stay away from summer marathons. That can even be true in northern locations where it might be cooler – remember to factor in humidity.
- Size – there is a huge difference between running among a friendly crowd of 200 versus being in the mix of 50,000 at Peachtree in Atlanta. In fact, there really are very few similarities at all. Again, think through what you’re trying to accomplish – have fun, be part of a big event, just trying to get started, or going after that elusive PR. For the latter, your best bet is to find a sanctioned medium sized event (500-2,000 runners).
- Organizer – most people probably don’t really pay attention to who the event organizer is, but they should. It will be the organizer who ultimately determines whether you are running next to a stroller, how many aid stations there are, how the course is laid out, whether the distances are certified, and many other aspects that greatly affect your experience. Be sure to check out who it is that is making all of the decisions about the event before you commit your time, energy and money. A well intentioned organizer that is inexperienced, or sloppy will compromise your experience.
- Total Experience – there are running events that are very simple. Pay your fee, get a T shirt, line up, run the distance, cross the finish line and go home. Then there are those that have it all: VIP reception and participant dinner and presentation, and exhibit hall the night before, snacks and beverages before the race, a 1 mile fun run, 5K, 10K, chip timing, awards and a party with a live band to end it all. As with each criterion, think through what you are wanting to accomplish – a simple rune, or a total experience.
It’s a wonderful blessing to live in a time and place where there are so many options. Consider the Seven Points and what you’re trying to accomplish, select the one that’s right for you, and enjoy… and repeat as often as practical!