I am in the middle of my fall half marathon training plan, and I have heard many others say that they are beginning to ramp up their mileage as well. For us here in the south, half marathon and marathon season is VERY short. It won’t really start cooling down here until October, and most distances races are over by March, so we have to cram in as many races as we can.
Training in cooler weather! Yes!
I am honestly still undecided about my race season and thought many of you may be as well, so I decided to compile several fall races you may want to check out if you live or plan on running in the southeast. Some I have run myself, and some just look like a lot of fun! Hopefully some of you can give input on the ones that I haven’t run that look fun!
1.) Gulf Coast half Mandeville, Louisiana: This is a fun, flat half marathon in my hometown! Just a short drive to New Orleans, you can run a race and still visit the city without expensive city hotel prices. This course is beautiful and goes through old Mandeville and along the beautiful lakefront. October is a great time to race in Louisiana, too! I haven’t signed up yet, but really hoping to run this one with Bobby this year! I had just had Emma Kate last year so I missed it.
2.) Rock n Roll Savannah: As a member of the Rock ‘n Blog team, I am partial to Rock n Roll races, and while I haven’t run this one, it’s on my bucket list and I have heard nothing but wonderful things about this gorgeous course in such a historic city. It sounds like a great November weekend racecation to me! (enter code LOOKINGGLASS15 for $15 off registration!)
3.) runDisney Wine and Dine half and 5k: This race is sold out for this year, but listen to me, SIGN UP AS SOON AS YOU CAN for 2016! It’s SO MUCH FUN. It’s a nighttime race, in the happiest place on earth! Plus, it has an amazing after party in EPCOT celebrating the race and the food and wine festival. This race is typically held the second week in November.
4.) Space Coast marathon and half: This is another one I have heard nothing but good things about. This is Florida’s oldest marathon, and is run along a beautiful waterfront course on Florida’s east coast. The entire event revolves around the space theme, which is pretty awesome. Race is November 29th!
5.) Thunder Road marathon, half, and 5k: This race weekend is in Charlotte, North Carolina. There is a whole weekend of fun with a marathon, half, and 5k option. This is a fun weekend in mid November and celebrates stock car racing. Plenty of family friendly fun and music, this weekend is for the everyone. I have also heard the course is very scenic!
QOTD: Any favorite fall races in the south?
Bridie Rist says
Space Coast half sells out almost as fast as Wine and Dine…I volunteered last year. The course volunteers wear space themed costumes, so its even fun for the volunteers. The medals are also one of the big draws, they are awesome!
The medals look so cool!
I did the Space Coast half last year, and I personally don’t think it lived up to all the hype. The medal is AWESOME and the after race refreshments were some of the best I’ve ever seen, but the course is a narrow out and back with WAY TOO MANY PEOPLE on it. It’s not very spectator friendly and while the river you run along is pretty to look at, there wasn’t much else to entertain you because the space theme is seriously lacking on course.
I would do it again if I lived in Florida, but I’d rather save my traveling to Florida races for runDisney. I’m doing Wine and Dine for the first time this year and I can’t wait for that!
If you don’t like crowded courses you may not like wine and dine lol! Lots of people 🙂 but still a favorite of mine!
Dan Steadman says
Tryon Half Marathon, November is awesome…but I am about to start training for the January Charleston Marathon…of course you can’t go wrong with a Thanksgiving day race…gives you an excuse to KILL the Thanksgiving day spread…the one here is free and top 85 male and female get socks!!!!
I love turkey trots!
Vanessa Walden says
I did the W&D last year – in the pouring rain – and I told my husband last night I want to do it again one year so I can actually enjoy the F&W festival and the after party. I was cold, soaking wet and sore last year so it was a bust. I love running at night, however.
I’m in N. GA so I do want to do the Savannah R&R half, maybe next year. I’d like to do a half where there are spectators and entertainment. I think it would make the time go by faster.
As for other races in the South, the 4 Bridges Half (7 Bridges Full) is in mid-October in Chattanooga. I’m doing the half this year again. It’s a beautiful course but lacks the entertainment factor.
Chattanooga just added a new half/full the first weekend in March called the Chattanooga Marathon/Half Marathon. Instead of running along the river like others, this one will run through downtown neighborhoods and the organizers say they are going to rally the residents to provide spectator support. I’m registered for this one, too, and it should be fun. That would be a great family weekend for you guys, lots of stuff for EK to see.
W&D is my absolute favorite race. St. Jude Memphis Half runs a close second. You just can’t beat the cause, either. It’s because it benefits St. Jude Children’s Reasearch Hospital that makes it so special. Seeing a child holding a sign that says “Thank you for saving my life” will definitely make the run more meaningful. It’s always the first Saturday in December, which is technically fall. It could be the best weather ever (2012), or, iced out like it was in 2013. I’m hoping for beautiful weather this year!
I remember when it got cancelled! That was sad
Rachael @ Catch Me if You Can says
wine and dine to date is my absolute favorite race. the party alone makes it worth it but running through the parks at night is so much fun! I cant wait to do it again (we have done it twice already)
Yes! I have done it 3 times but missed the past 2 (now will be 3) 🙁
Mindy @ Road Runner Girl says
I LOVE Gulf Coast Half in Mandeville! Hope to see you there this year!!! And RnR Savannah is awesome! I ran it the inaugural year and hope to run it again one day!
I’m not sure if I’m running or not 🙁
Runaway Bridal Planner says
Thunderroad is on my to do list when I make it to NC, it just sounded like a fun race, good to know it is scenic too, that’s always a great bonus!
RnR Savannah, would also be a great one to run, I’ve always wanted to visit Savannah:)
Savannah is awesome!