Hmmm. What races this summer am I going to run? And by run, I don't necessarily mean on two feet. Maybe I should have used the word "compete" or "finish," as some of my favorite races are on bicycle or kayak or scooter or whatever goofy way the race organizers set forth.
With so many race events in Chicagoland, how does one ever pick out the good ones? Windy City Sports magazine http://www.windycitysports.com is probably one of the most comprehensive "clearinghouses" for events of all disciplines. Now is the time to start looking and planning. First time half-marathoners should schedule training for 12 weeks before race day. Beginner marathon programs are more like 18 weeks. But there are still quite a few 5Ks and 10-milers for those without the time to dedicate to a seemingly part-time job of running :)
Brian and I have been adventure racing together for a few years. Our team Sloppy Hogs is already planning for races in the Fall 2008! Think about what your fitness goals are for the spring or summer, and find some events to keep you honest in your training! Even better is to find a partner that you can not only train with, but share mutual support and competition. Brian is the type of guy you want to kill during training runs, but who you want next to you in the late hours of a grueling race. A good training partner firms up the committment to prepare, particularly on those mornings when you might otherwise consider rolling back to sleep.
Find a race. Get a partner. No snooze button.