The 2014 Race Awards

2014 was a pretty amazing running year for me. I started the year without any mileage goals, but I really wanted to set personal bests in the 10K and half marathon. I got my 10K PB, but fell short in the half – so you can guess what my top goal for 2015 will be! In the end, I am proud to have totalled 1702.8 km, more than 350 more than my previous yearly best.

Along the way,  I was able to run at 14 different races and fun runs. They were all special in their own way, but some really stand out for various reasons. Here, I will highlight the best of the 2014 races I ran.

And the nominees are…

February 1 – The Blizzard Triathlon (ran as a skate/ski/run relay, I did the running leg), Saskatoon, SK – 5K
March 8 – The Red Rock Canyon Marathon (5K, half marathon, marathon), Las Vegas, NV – half marathon
April 13 – The Zoo Run, Saskatoon, SK – 5K
April 27 – The Saskatoon Police Run (5K, 10K, half marathon), Saskatoon, SK – 10K
May 4 – Wings For Life World Run (moving finish line, many simultaneous global locations), Saskatoon, SK
May 10 – SRRA Run For Women (3K, 6K), Saskatoon, SK – 3K
May 25 – Potash Corp SRRA Saskatchewan Marathon (5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon, kids marafun), Saskatoon, SK – half marathon
June 1 – Beads of Courage Colour Run (2.5K, 5K), Saskatoon, SK – about 3K
June 8 – Bridge City Boogie (2K, 5K, 10K), Saskatoon, SK – 5K
July 6 – Dirty Donkey Mud Run (6K, 10K Extreme), Saskatoon, SK – 6K
September 14 – The Heartbeat Run (1K, 5K, 10K, 3 Canadian locations), Saskatoon, SK – 10K
September 17 – school Terry Fox Run (1.5K, 3K), most Canadian schools – 1.5K with my kids
September 20 – Mogathon (1K, 5K, 10K, half marathon, 30K, 30K relay, “no-K beer run”), Saskatoon, SK – 10K
December 6 – Santa Shuffle (5K, multiple Canadian locations), Saskatoon, SK

Best Scenery – Red Rock Canyon Marathon

Saskatoon is beautiful, but it just can’t compete with the beautiful red mountains of the Nevada desert. The huge changes in elevation are worth it. This area is also home to the endangered Desert Tortoise, but I’ve yet to see this particular scenery feature. (Race review posts from 2013 and 2014.)

Photo credit vegas.com

Photo credit vegas.com

Best Medal – Santa Shuffle

The sparkles on this snow globe shaped medal plus the wide ribbon make this medal stand out in my 2014 collection.

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Honourable Mentions – Red Rock Canyon Marathon, Mogathon

Red Rock’s medal is huge for the second year in a row and also features a paw print in honour of the chosen charity for the director’s races (a big cat rescue) and a mountain silhouette. Mogathon’s medal is sparkly, and anything that sparkles gets extra points in my book.

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Best Race Shirt  – The Saskatchewan Marathon

This is hands-down the best race shirt colour I’ve ever gotten. I love this colour. The adidas shirts fit well and are a lightweight technical fabric. I wear this shirt all the time. (Event reviews from 2012, 2013, 2014.)

Great shirt colour this year!

Great shirt colour this year!

Best Race Swag – The Heartbeat Run

This is a small race, but they have finisher’s medals for everyone, age group medals (gold, silver, bronze) for every 10 year age group for men and women, discounts on next year’s race for medal winners, and door prizes like Running Room gift cards and shoes. (Race reports from 2012, 2013, and 2014.)

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Honourable Mention – Mogathon

With a tech t-shirt, buff, finish line BBQ and kids’ entertainment, this event always offers a good bang for your buck.

Best Finish Line Food – Red Rock Canyon Marathon

Brownies. Cookies. Yogurt. Applesauce. Fruit. Pancakes. Other delicious carbohydrates. Hands down winner.

Honourable Mention – The Saskatoon Police Run, Mogathon, SRRA Women’s Run

Runners love pancakes. For my Saskatoon area pancake lovers, the Police Run is your race. Love BBQ? You’ll love Mogathon. d’lish by Tish restaurant sponsors delicious finish line salads for the Women’s Run, and hot dogs and hamburgers served by men earns points as well!

Most Unique Event – Wings For Life World Run

This race was run simultaneously in many global locations. Everyone started at exactly the same time (4:00 a.m. in the pitch dark for us in Canada!) and 30 minutes later a “Catcher Car” began driving at a prescribed speed. Linked with computers and all sorts of technology that took four years to organize, the cars accelerated gradually and stopped runners’ timing chips as they were passed. The last person running out of more than 35,000 runners in the world was crowned the winner. I made it 18.2 km and placed 10,565 in the world. This was televised, which made it feel pretty “big time.” I’m sad that this event will move to a more picturesque location in Canada (Niagra Falls… Saskatchewan can’t compete with that!) for 2015. (Complete 2014 summary here.)

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Catcher car, another for back-up in case of technical failure in the first, plus an ambulance passing runners.

Catcher car, another for back-up in case of technical failure in the first, plus an ambulance passing runners.

Best Untimed Fun Run – Beads of Courage Colour Run

My blog posts about this race from 2013 and 2014 will explain the details of this incredible charity and the amazing women who put this event together. My kids and I love this run, and will be back again in 2015.

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Best Overall Race Experience – Mogathon

With a variety of distances, the Mogathon has something for everyone, including a “no-K beer run,” a.k.a. beer gardens. With great swag, a medal for every finisher in every distance, lively water stations (with costumes and themes!), bouncy castles and balloon animals, an amazing catered finish line BBQ, live music and chip timing, this event is second to none in Saskatoon. Here are my race reports from 2013 and 2014.

So there you have it. These races were my “best of” for 2014, and I truly enjoyed each of them. I have a few races on my 2015 calendar already, some returning favourites and a couple new ones. All the best to you and yours in 2015!

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One response to this post.

  1. Congrats on a great year of running. Love how you broke out the awards. Love the pic for Red Rock Canyon Marathon. I might have to put this one on my “to do” list. Good luck chasing down that half-marathon goal! Happy New Year!

    Reply

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