Best Races for Food, Fast and Fun!

This guest post was written by Allie Burdick

Why do you race?

This is a simple question that may have a very complicated answer. The reasons why individual runners race, can be as varied as the shoes on their feet!

In the interest of simplicity, we’ve broken down race motivation into three broad categories: food, fast and fun. To bring you the most concise list for whatever your racing reasons are, we’ve scoured the inter webs, grilled running friends and even experienced some of these events first hand.

There are many reasons people race, and we have you covered; if its food, fast or fun, we have the best races for you to choose from!

Here’s our top three for each:

Will Run for Food

If fuel is what you’re after, these races know the way to your heart.

Dole Great Race of Agoura Hills, CA (March)

Dole Great Race of Agoura Hills

Not only are there over 500 vendors and live music at this half, full, 10K and 5K event, but also a complete gourmet food buffet and a pancake booth. Carbs with a side of carbs, anyone? Website

Fat Ass 5K, Springfield, IL (May)

Fatass 5k Springfield

With a name like that, they had better bring the food!

This race doesn’t disappoint. In fact, they don’t even wait until after the race to start feeding participants – the actual race route includes ice cream, donut, beer and corndog stations!

We’re guessing there’s a lot of walking between those stations, and they probably boast the slowest finish times around.

Slow, but happy, very happy. Website

Peaks Island Road Race, ME (July)

Peaks Island Road RaceWhen you think of Maine, there’s only one post-race meal that will do – lobster! The best part is you only have to run 5 miles to indulge in this post-race lobster bake that includes lobster, steak, chicken, vegetarian and kids meals! They should really have this once a month. Website

The Need for Speed

Let’s face it; sometimes you just want a BQ or PR.

Town of Celebration Marathon, Celebration, FL (Jan)

Town of Celebration Marathon

What an appropriate name for a race that boasts a 12.8 percent Boston qualifying finish pool! Plus, it’s in Florida in January; what’s not to celebrate? Website

Maui Oceanfront Marathon, Lahaina, Maui, HI (Jan)

Maui Oceanfront Marathon

Just in case you need another reason to travel to Hawaii, we present to you one of the flattest and fastest courses around.

The marathon is limited to 600 runners, and the other distances (5K, 10K and 15K) only accept 400. Get your spot early and then hang out in paradise while you bask in your PR glory! Website

Houston Marathon, Houston, TX (Jan)

Houston Marathon You know everything is bigger in Texas, except the hills!

You can expect a great course with all the trimmings, and a big Texas welcome when you race this course like a rabbit!

With just over 7,000 finishers last year, 700 qualified for Boston. If seven is your lucky number, I think you just found your race. Website

For the Fun of It

Running is supposed to be fun, right? Sometimes it’s great to sign-up for a race just for the bling, swag or atmosphere.

The Wicked Wine Run 5K, Various Locations

The Wicked Wine Run 5K

Do we need to add anything here? I think the name says it all.

Runners are treated to the sweeping vistas of local vineyards along the course, just to get them in the mood for a glass (or three) at the finish line. Website

Nike Women’s Marathon, San Francisco, CA


Sorry guys but we cannot mention ‘fun’ without this one. What could be more fun then being handed a Tiffany & Co. necklace at the finish line? Being handed one by a firefighter in a tuxedo! Personally I think this should happen at every race.

The ladies are also treated to Ghirardelli chocolate at mile 11 and a Nike dry-fit shirt in their swag bag! Website

New Years Double, Allen, TX

New Years Double

Runners earn every bit of the two coolest medals around, when they complete a half or full marathon on New Years Eve, and another on New Years Day! The medal is actually a big plate with two holders, one for each medal that forms one amazing hunk of bling. Website

Happy New Year indeed.

Allie Burdick
Allie is a sweat addict and gets her fix through running, cycling, swimming and chasing after her twin boys.  Allie is a Oiselle Team Volée member and was a part of Team USA in the World Championship Duathlon competition in 2014.  Allie’s blog VITA – Train for Life is all about hard work and motivation with a healthy kick of snark and hilarity.  Allie currently teaches three weekly fitness classes near her home in the Northeast where she and her husband like to live it up big!
You can find Allie on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Google Plus

Have you ever participated in any of these races? Which one is catching your eye?

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