Monday, November 15, 2010

MBE: Unconventional Races

Monday Brain Exchange (MBE) is sponsored by Jill, who blogs at Finishing Is Winning. This week's topic is Unconventional Races.

Question: Have you ever partcipated in any unconventional races? If so, tell us about them. If not, is it something you would consider and if so which one(s)?

I'm not sure what Jill considers unconventional, but for the purpose of this post I'm going to define it as anything that's not a straight up road race. I've done quite a few, and I love them for the variety they offer.
  • Holiday runs - these are usually more fun runs than races as they are rarely chip timed, but I get to dress up and they are a blast. My favorite so far have been the Reindeer Run 5K (because I LOVE Santa Hats) and Miami Beach Halloween Half Marathon.
  • Bay to Breakers 12k - at it's heart, this is a road race, but only a few actually race it. The rest of the runners are there to have fun, dress up in costume and party over the course of 12k, which is in itself an unconventional distance. This race is unique in that it is a point-to-point race across all of San Francisco. 
  • Muddy Buddy - not sure how unconventional this is anymore, but it's pretty out there for me. I do not really like mud, and the combination of running, biking, obstacles, and mud pit makes it pretty unconventional for me. I had fun doing this with Jason while dressed up as Alice and the White Rabbit.
  • Urban Dare - this is like a 1-day amazing race! Again you get to dress up, if you want, then decipher clues to find checkpoints on a race to the finish. It's just all kinds of fun.
  • Adventure Race - This is usually a combination of hiking/orienteering, biking, and canoeing. The race we did also had a challenge course that was a true challenge for me but I had a blast.
  • Firefighter Challenge and Stair Climb - This is as unconventional as it gets! The race only lasted 11 minutes for me, but it was quite the challenge. I wore full gear and did various tasks performed by firefighters, then climbed 19 flights of stairs still in gear and waring an oxygen tank. I didn't think I was going to make it.
  • Reverse Tri - This was my attempt at do a triathlon without swimming in open water, because it ended with a very short pool swim. I thought it would be easier, but it wasn't. It was still a lot of fun. 
I wish there were more unconventional races in Florida, because they are way too much fun. I specially want to run the Skirt Chaser 5K, where the women get running skirts and a 3 minute headstart then the guys try to catch them. I may have to travel to do one real soon now that I actually own a running skirt from SkirtSports.

What unconventional races have you run? I'd love new ideas of races to try.

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