Hi everyone! As my time in PA draws to a close I’ve been thinking ahead to my future as a runner in Alaska. Many people assume I won’t be able to run, but I plan on running all summer (hello no humidity!) and I’m figuring out some goal races to keep me motivated throughout the summer. Plus, I signed up for 14 in 2014 (see my 14 in 2014 page for a list of races I’ve already run!) and I plan on fully meeting that goal with as few virtual races as possible!
I haven’t officially registered for any races in Alaska yet, but I did register for 2 races in the fall! Our contract with our employer in Seward ends on September 14, and my MOH/BFF is getting married on October 4 and I’m a bridesmaid! So we decided that shortly after finishing up in Seward we will fly back to Philly for a few weeks to visit family before her wedding. And then I found out about this:
If you’re wondering what the Blerch is, go here now and educate yourself. We all have one! Anyways, as soon as I found out about it I was moping around the house grumbling about how I wish I could be there for the inaugural race and how much fun it will be (the aid stations will be equipped with cake, nutella, and magical purple drink! And people in Blerch suits will be running around!) and my husband said, “Why not try to register? We can go visit my dad in Seattle for a few days and then you can run it”. So with the approval of my non-runner husband I struggled through the crazy registration process, complete with a crashed race website and tons of stress, and eventually got in for the half marathon right before the race sold out in only 29 minutes! Then there was tons of drama which can be seen on the event’s Facebook page. The organizer decided to add another day since the 2,000 person limit filled up so fast, and the people who got in on Sunday were pretty upset that they were now running race #2! Luckily he opened up the option to choose which day you want to run, and I’m now running the actual inaugural half marathon on Saturday, September 20th. I’m so excited to meet The Oatmeal in person and get him to sign his new running book for me! Oh and there will be Nutella, so obviously I’m super pumped about that!
I’m also running another race during our time in the lower 48! On October 5th I will be running the inaugural Yuengling Oktoberfest 5k in Bethlehem, PA!
I’m mostly excited for this race because I’ll be running it with a bunch of amazing ladies that I will simply refer to as “The Junebugs”. We all became BFFs while planning our June 2013 weddings and we’ve stayed in touch ever since! I can’t wait to meet them all in person! Especially since we will be running together and then celebrating with a ton of free beer! Bethlehem is hilly but I’ve always had fun racing there so I’m looking forward to this race!
As far as Alaska races go, here’s my very tentative list of possible races:
- Her Tern Women’s Half Marathon: When I first realized we were truly moving to Alaska I found this half marathon on the Skinny Raven Sports website (the local running store) and it was the first thing that got me excited about running in AK. It’s only open to 1,000 women and one man, so it’s nice and small. It also takes place on paved trails throughout Anchorage so the scenery will be beautiful, and the weather should be great since it’s at the end of July! Plus all the finishers get to attend a female-centered expo the day before the race, get a Brooks gift card with their packet, and instead of medals you get really pretty bracelets! I’m kind of a medal whore but I like the idea of being able to wear my “medal” all the time in bracelet form. The price is high (much lower than Disney Princess, but still pretty high) so I haven’t registered yet, but I did get approved to take those days off so I really don’t know what I’m waiting for! I chose this one over the other big Anchorage half marathons since I figured it’s a nice, low key way to get into running in AK. I can run the Mayor’s Midnight Sun Half Marathon next summer! Or maybe even the marathon? 🙂
- Anchorage Salmon Run: This is just a 5k that takes place on May 3rd. That’s our first weekend after starting our jobs, so while I know we’ll be tired and possibly stressed I also know we’ll be in Anchorage getting all the supplies we need for living in Seward so I might as well run this race too! It’s one of the few Saturdays I’ll have off all summer so that’s why I’m super tempted to register for this one! Plus it has such an Alaskan name that I can’t refuse! My one reservation is that it snowed for this race last year…yep, in May. Welcome to Alaska racing!
- The Alaska 10k Classic: I’ll need to request off work for this one, but it sounds like a great race and should fit into my training schedule pretty well since it’s at the beginning of August. I also heard it’s mostly downhill, so you know I want to be there!
I’ll definitely keep you all updated when I finally register for these races. I’m excited to have the opportunity to race in Alaska but I guess it still hasn’t hit me that I’ll be there in a little over 1 week! I feel like registering is silly since I still don’t feel like we’re actually moving up there! I really do need to start registering for races now that we’re getting so close to moving day (Saturday!!!!).
What races are you running this summer/fall? Anyone else as obsessed with the Blerch as I am?