Top Women’s Racing Getaways (Guest Post)

11 Mar

While I’m away for the week I wanted to share some great posts by some of my Sweat Pink sisters. I hope you find their posts as interesting as I did! This post is by Megan, who blogs at #runmeganrun.

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Hello everyone! I am super excited to be guest posting here! I normally blog at #runmeganrun, but love any opportunity to collaborate with some other Sweat Pink ladies. Becca gave me the opportunity to blog on just about any topic I’d like. With an upcoming girls’ weekend race at the end of April (you’ll read more about that in a minute), I’ve got race-cations on my mind and thought I’d have some fun with y’all and this post.

Top 5 Running Women’s Getaways

 It’s no surprise that with each and upcoming race or race series, they’re catering more and more to the ideas of girls’ getaway weekends. With nearly 1,200 half-marathons in the United States alone, the number of people who’ve finished a half-marathon (13.1 miles) has more than tripled since 2000, and a whopping 59 percent of finishers are women!

With that great statistic behind us, I present to you the Top 5 Running Women’s Getaways – opportunities for you and your BRF (best running friends) to get away from the hubby, kids, the dog, that job, and just life in general to have an all-out great time… and maybe set some PRs while you’re at it! These are really in no particular order, just five outstanding races and series that provide you the opportunity to escape from it all.

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Zooma Race Series

Zooma was literally created with women in mind: “ZOOMA is unique among other women’s races in that it is literally “run by women” (pun intended!)  ZOOMA’s founder and executive director is a woman, mother, and runner, and the staff are all women.” While the race is open to men, it’s still a sea of mostly female runners at each start line, ranging from locations like Florida to Cape Cod and Texas to the Great Lakes. You can find a race pretty much near you, guaranteed (okay, or at least worth the travel)! Zooma races are often hosted at a super nice hotel (usually adjoined with a spa or resort of some kind), so you know you can convince your BRFs for a spa day post-race.

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Barefoot Wine is also one of Zooma’s national sponsors, along with Muscle Milk Light and HonesTea. I’m all about the wine here, so a glass of post-race wine? I’m all yours. You also get a super sweet necklace for finishing a Zooma race, and they recently introduced the PR medal – PR at any of their races, and you get to earn this baby!

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Divas Half Marathon Series

In case it’s not obvious yet, I’m a sucker for all things “girly” – wine, necklaces, the glitz and the glam. So yes, I’m that girl that gets sucked in by a super fun, glittery medal. The Divas Half Marathon series does not disappoint in that arena. With a number of race locations to choose from on both sides of the country and Puerto Rico, you can truly make this a get-away-from-it-all kinda weekend. Along the course, in addition to the normal water stops, there’s also boa and tiara stops, so you can pick up a little glam along the way, all in time for the most spectacular photo finish! What more could you want than to run with a hot pink feathered boa? Not much.

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Check out Divas for a girls’ weekend that is pinked out in every way possible and enjoy a little glitz of your own.

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Destination Race Series

I like wine. You know that by now. What better than a race (or two, or five) that are all based around wine? Destination Races produces the Wine Country Half Marathon Series that includes Santa Barbara, Virginia, Oregon, and British Columbia, Canada, and provide the perfect scenery, beverages (post-race merlot, anyone?) and environment for a wine-tasting and running sort of weekend. My two loves, combined.

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Make it an ultimate girls weekend with an extended stay in wine country, schedule some tours and wine tasting, and throw a race into the mix. Perfection, I’d say. I’m looking forward to doing one of these sometime, but get on your registration quickly – they sell out fast!

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Nike Women’s Marathon

With two race weekends now offered each year (San Francisco marathon and half in the fall, DC in the spring), there’s a few opportunities to make it to Nike’s Women’s Races. However, it’s tricky – the race is only open via a lottery system, and nobody quite knows the rhyme or reason to how to get in. Rumor has it that if you sign up with a group, you’re more like to get in as a group that an individual – all the better reason to get your girlfriends to sign up with you! The best reason to make this a girls’ getaway weekend? Ogle over that post-race bling:

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Yes, I am pointing out those two pieces of bling: those oh-so-pretty Tiffany’s blue boxes and the equally as pretty firefighters dressed in tuxedos. What better way to end a girls’ race than with some fabulously dressed men? Count me in! I get to run the inaugural DC race at the end of April, and I could not be more excited to run DC with some of my best girlfriends and get that bling at the end!

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Ragnar Relay Series

Of the races I’ve mentioned so far, Ragnar is the only one I’ve completed (Nike DC shortly!), but I can’t stop talking about it every chance I get. Mention a relay of any kind, and I’ll pipe up with my almost-31-hour running adventure through backwoods Maryland and into DC last October. Never heard of Ragnar? For shame! Kidding. But really, Ragnar is a relay adventure unlike any other – teams of six (ultra) or twelve (regular) crammed into one (or two) vans for a 200-ish mile journey through any of their sixteen locations (ranging from Southern California to Florida Keys, Niagara Falls area to Chicago). And lots of shenanigans along the way. Want to get to know some running friends better, and make them your ultimate BRFs? Ragnar is your chance to do that – there is no conversation off-limits in a Ragnar van (I mean that whole-heartedly).

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But it’s worth it. The camaraderie, the accomplishment, the exhaustion and the free pizza at the end are all worth it. You’ll truly come home with some of the best running stories of your life, stories on the road you never want to talk of again, and some of the best new running friends ever. Not sold? Check out my experience from Ragnar DC and think about it – I promise, it doesn’t disappoint.

Are there any other races you would consider ideal for a girls’ getaway weekend? Have you done any of the above races and made them a girls’ weekend?


Feel free to drop by my normal home at #runmeganrun or tweet me! Thanks for reading!

Megan

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3 Responses to “Top Women’s Racing Getaways (Guest Post)”

  1. mizunogirl March 11, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

    Definitely I would consider The 26.2 with Donna a GREAT girls weekend! It’s a warm getaway in Florida in February for those up North, and a great way to support Breast Cancer Research…and you won’t find too many races with better crowd support (think multiple ladies handing out homemade pink frosted cupcakes…) Here’s my Race report: http://30weeks.wordpress.com/2013/02/20/race-report-26-2-with-donna/

    The other ideal girls get-away that I have not been a part of is the Disney Princess Half Marathon…Again a Great Florida Get-away…and one that definitely caters to the gals! I did go to the expo this year (I live right here at Disney) and the expo itself was so fun!

    • Megan Johnston (@__MeganJohnston) March 19, 2013 at 12:26 pm #

      Great additions, and I totally agree! I hear good things about Donna’s race, and totally agree with Princess. Would love to do that eventually. 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Back from the Beach | Diary of a slow runner - March 18, 2013

    […] in case you missed them, I hope you’ll check out the guest posts from the past week: Monday – Top Women’s Racing Getaways Tuesday – Healthy Recipes to Cure a Sweet Tooth Wednesday – Time Management as a College […]

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