People run for many different reasons; for health, for fitness and some run for both. Others run to raise money for charities, while many run for the challenge and sense of accomplishment. Regardless of why you run the races you do, everyone gets recognition for having done it and a medal to commemorate the event and that medal has become one of the top reasons for many.
If you love medals and want to fill your rack with as many as possible, we have a plan to accelerate your accumulation of this hard earned bling.
I recently had a chat with multiple medal lover Kelly Mullin Lewis (@according2kelly), who this year ran Disney’s Goofy Challenge in Orlando one weekend and then The Tinker Bell Half Marathon in Anaheim the next, earning her five ...yes five medals in two weekends. We were chatting about the LA/SF Challenge program that the LA and San Francisco Marathons have that reward those who finish both with a third commemorative medal and it gave me the idea for this article.
There are several races throughout North America and the world that have extra medal challenges and programs as part of their events. These challenges and programs are a medal lover’s dream come true.
Here are six events we know of and some details regarding their programs;
1. Disney Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge
Hmmm...can’t decide whether to run the Marathon or the Half, run ‘em both and do the Goofy! The Goofy Challenge is a 39.3 mile challenge that takes place annually in Orlando, FL on Walt Disney World’s Marathon Weekend. The Half Marathon is on Saturday and the Full Marathon is on Sunday. You receive your Donald Duck medal for the Half Marathon, your Mickey Mouse Medal for the Marathon and then your Goofy Medal for having completed both. Disney just added a 10K race and an additional challenge called the Dopey, see event #10 for more details.
Here is a photo of these magnificent mementoes and a link to the Walt Disney World Marathon’s website where you will find more information regarding the Goofy Challenge.
2. Disney Coast to Coast Race Challenge
Do you want the ultimate test in endurance with a Disney twist? Then join the runDisney Coast to Coast Race Challenge! If you complete a runDisney half marathon or marathon at the Walt Disney World® Resort and theDisneyland® Resort in the same calendar year, then you will receive an additional medal commemorating your achievement!
Here is a photo of the magnificent medal and a link to the Run Disney website where you will find more information regarding the Coast to Coast Race Challenge.
3. LA/SF Challenge
Runners who participate in consecutive ASICS LA Marathon and The Wipro SF Marathons will receive a special LA/SF Challenge medal commemorating this incredible achievement!
Run LA, get a medal, run San Francisco get a second, run them both and get a third.
Here is a photo of the magnificent mementoes (the LA medal is now an Asics Medal and not Honda) and a link to the LA Marathon website where you will find more information regarding the LA/SF Challenge.
4. Bermuda Triangle Challenge
Looking for an island event, something a little exotic, try Bermuda and the Bermuda Triangle Challenge. The Bermuda Triangle Challenge requires you to complete three races in three days (Mile, 10K and the Marathon). Upon completion of the three you will receive not only a medal for each but a fourth to commemorate this momentous achievement.
Here is a photo of the magnificent mementoes and a link to the Bermuda Marathon Weekend website where you will find more information regarding the Bermuda Triangle Challenge.
5. Rock n Roll Heavy Medals
The Rock n Roll Marathon Series has a “Heavy Medals” program. You can earn some serious extra bling when you finish two or more Rock n Roll Marathon Series races in a single calendar year (Jan – Dec).
Start earning extra medals after two races. You get more extra medals when you hit the four, five, six, seven and ten race milestones. There are other extra medals awarded for specific race combinations and one for running a race on both sides of the Atlantic. It is actually (theoretically) possible to earn up to twenty medals in one year for running eleven races (oh yeah ... huge travel budget and unlimited time off work are required to run those eleven races).
Here is a photo of the magnificent mementoes and a link to the Rock n Roll Heavy Medals website where you will find more information regarding the program.
6. Drop 13 – Salt Lake Half Marathon
We don’t have a picture of this medal but the concept of this race’s program is really cool. It’s all about achieving goals and you have a choice of shooting for one of two when you register. The name of the race is the drop 13 and the reason for that is that it is a downhill 13 mile course. Two other reasons for the name are that you can add one of two possible goals to completing the 13 mile race. You can choose to complete the race and either drop 13 pounds while training for and running it or you can choose to cut 13 minutes off your best half marathon time. If you succeed in finishing the race (all downhill, actually 3,000 ft of elevation descent) you get a medal and if you succeed in achieving the goal you set at registration, you get a second. It’s a cool concept; the race is very scenic, fast and an excellent opportunity to earn some extra bling.
Check out the details at http://www.drop13.com/
7. Allstate Life Insurance 13.1 Marathon Series (update)
Jules Edwards (@WeightLoss319) brought this one to my attention, and am I ever glad she did! I was familiar with the series but had no idea they had such an awesome medal program.
If you complete three events in the 13.1 Marathon Series (they are actually Half Marathons...hence the 13.1 designation) within a calendar year, you will receive a special medal and when I say special ...I mean really special. The medal design consists or three rings and the rings are custom engraved with the names of the three cities you ran in (see below). Upon finishing five events in the same series (same year) you receive another custom medal in the shape of the "V" roman numeral but this time you choose the cities whose names appear on your medal.
Finally, there is another cool award worth mentioning and that is the award for finishing all the series’ events in a single calendar year. If you run all the events in the series within a calendar year you earn free entry to any Allstate Life Insurance13.1 Marathon Series event for LIFE!
Here is a photo of the magnificent memento and a link to the Allstate Life Insurance 13.1 Marathon Series website where you will find more information regarding the program.
8. Maryland Double (update)
This program is a partnership between the Frederick Running Festival and the Baltimore Running Festival, to help promote both events. Not only do you get a $10 discount when you register for both events but you also get a special third medal upon completion.
Here is a photo of the magnificent memento and a link to the Baltimore Running Festival’s website where you will find more information regarding the program.
9. Boston 2 Big Sur Challenge (update)
You’d think that the most sought after finisher’s medal in the world would be enough but no some people want more and for them there is the Boston 2 Big Sur Challenge. The Big Sur International Marathon in California offers a third medal to runners who successfully complete the Boston Marathon and then the Big Sur Marathon back to back.
All B2Bparticipants receive:
- Entry into the Big Sur Marathon
- A B2B Asics Jacket
- A B2B Asics Tech Shirt
- A B2B Medal to commemorate their achievement
- And a bunch of other stuff.
Here is a photo of the magnificent mementoes and a link to Big Sur International Marathon’s website where you will find more information regarding the program.
10. Disney's Dopey Challenge
Run Disney just announced that they are adding a fourth race to The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, the 10K. Now a runner can run the 5K on Thursday, 10K on Friday, Half Marathon on Saturday and the Marathon on Sunday. Disney also announced the launch of their new challenge, the Dopey... yes one weekend 6 medals. One finisher's medal for each race, the Goofy medal and the new Dopey medal.
Disney builds such a huge show and a magnificent event arround Marathon Weekend that you wonder what more could they do? The new race and challenge answer the question and in my humble opinion keep Disney locked into it's enviable position as the funest Family running event ever!
So there you go, ten opportunities to fill your medal rack by running great events, having fun, achieving goals and inspiring others along the way. These are ten extra medal opportunities that we know about. If you know of any other events where you can earn extra medals, let us know and we’ll be sure to get the word out.
Have fun folks and run strong!