I’ve been thinking a lot about what makes a good race lately. I love the chilled out supportive atmosphere of ultras, but also some of the extra gimmicks of big city 10ks. So, if I planned a race this is what it would include:
1. A PB bell
You know that feeling when you cross the finish line with your arms in the air after getting that sought after PB? What if right before you get your medal there’s a bell there to ring away signalling you got your PB! I’d love to give it a ring and as a spectator I’d love to lead the cheers every time I heard it rung!
2. My race time on a clock
I may not be setting world records, but a picture of me and my race time (flag included at your own preference) would be ace. Some sort of programmable clock where I can type in my time, grab a photo, and post it to instagram immediately would be a great addition to my post-race glow.
3. Drinks & Cake
Goes without saying really, but races do a good job of providing nutrition on the course, what’s an extra table at the end going to hurt?
Medals are great, and there is nothing like wearing it to the cafe/pub afterwards to subtly show everyone why you’re wearing a soaking wet shirt and have hair poking out of dozens of bobby pins while gagging for a cappuccino. But just imagine getting a CROWN at the end of a race? I’d wear that everywhere for at least a week after the race and act totally surprised when people ask me what it’s for. “Crown?” *looks up* “Oh this thing? I ran a 10k last Saturday, you know…”
5. Surprise age groups
In races there is usually an overall winner, and then winners of age groups. It’s all kinds of awesome when you realize you’re 1 out of 3 in your age group and basically guaranteed a podium (aka bottle of wine in most local races) but as you get older those youngens at the bottom of your age group seem to win all the prizes. At my races the age categories would be decided by the draw of a hat.
“And the winner for the Female under 27 and 3 months is…. YOU!”
Plus, if you’re not there to claim your prize the wine goes to the first person who is willing to open it and drink it on the spot (sharing allowed).
6. THE starter gun
7. Best friends 4eva relay medals
A few of my friends have recently done marathon relays where they form teams and each run 10-20 km of the marathon course and complete the last 100m all together. It’s a fun way to be involved in the marathon even if you aren’t quite up to running the full thing. That said at the end of these relay marathons the teams get the same medals as those who ran the full marathon. I think there is room for improvement here and all relay runners should get a BFF 4EVA medal that fits together to form a whole marathon medal. Like below. How cool would it be to always be able to “fit” your medal in with some elses?