Need a quick marathon time to to qualify for the Boston Marathon? Heres your ultimate flat, speedy, PB setting list for each distance: from 5k to ultra 50 milers. Time to get registering!
Of course when searching for a fast course, whether that be a half marathon, full 26.6 or why not try and PB an ultra? There are often several things to keep in mind such as:
- Flat as can be course, perhaps even downhill the entire route.
- Pacers! With a solid number of runners that will hit your target time too
- No congestion. It’s so common for the first few miles to be overcrowded. (Of course with Covid 19 restrictions and safety measures this may be void with races releasing runners in waves) because nothing is worse than being stuck behind too many bodies (take it from someone who knows!)
- A roaring crowd. There’s a reason they call it home advantage with soccer games, because of the fans! The power of a crowd is incredible and uplifting even when you’ve hit that wall. The banners from complete strangers are so compelling and heart warming; there’s defiantly something in having a stranger cheer for you. Cities are the best option for this, easy for spectators.
- Choose a course that fits with what you need – some prefer the quiet, the hills or the scenic route; some want the beach views and some just want the winter weather, whatever you like theres something for everyone out there!
Boston is celebrating its 125th event this year!? With the quickest female 2:19:50. And fastest male 2:04:33 are you looking to smash those records? You need to qualify first! Heres the routes that could get you there:
5K: Carlsbad 5000
California. – April.
The self-proclaimed “world fastest 5k” is a road race on the sea-side streets of California. Well to be fair, the current 5k world records were set at Carlsbad 5000 – so maybe they’re right? The event is split for all ages and abilities including masters, age groups, party people and worlds fastest elites! Not to forget the legendary post—race after party with friends and family to celebrate; after all, they wont need to be hanging around long will they? (The fastest it was ran in was 13 minutes!)
Massachusetts – June.
The newest of the recent additions to the infamous Boston marathon. The course takes you along the historic commonwealth avenue; a city perfectly flat and plenty of crows to cheer your name (or bib number). Shalane Flanagan set the national 10k road record in Boston 10k therefore, it is claimed to be one of the fastest of its ilk. This year is a virtual one however.
Half marathon: 3M Half Marathon
Texas – January.
A 7am start during the coolest month of the year; Texas has your back for your half marathion PB! Not to mention the elevation of 300feet drop. The route is mostly downhill running with a few turns but no serious climbs in sight. You’l be taken past Austins finest locations and finish right near the Texas state capitol; expect nothing less than perfect racing conditions from the southern state.
Marathon: A1A Marathon
Florida – February.
South Florida beauty is the only term that comes to mind. The course is laden with unobstructed ocean views stretched for miles. There are pace teams available with the cut off at 6 hours but the maximum elevation 60foot, you’re sure to have a speedy race. The flat course is perfect for a flying personal best and ultimately a perfect opportunity for a qualifying time for Boston marathon. The ocean is your start and finish line. What more could you possibly want? (Pehaps a signature beach themed dolphin medal?) Sadly the 2021 race has been and long gone, but 2022 is open so get registering!
50k/50 miles: The Cascade Super Ultra
Washington – September.
They are both a point to point race from South Cle Elum To Cedar Falls.
The 50k racestart is at the Hayek trailhead and has almost no elevation gain and a whopping 1500 foot elevation drop over the course, making it one of easiest and fastest 50k in the country- considering the cut-off is 11 hours – definite one for the speedsters.
The 50mile race start is at the south Cle Elum Trailhead, one of the fastest you will find with about 600 feet elevation but and other crazy 1500 feet running on a wide gravel bike trail; no tree roots and pot holes to worry about. The official cut off time for the 50 miler is 13 hours – They mean business in Washington!
There are pacers available for both races, picked up at specific locations (COVID dependant) and plenty of aid stated both manned and unmanned, both type of aid stations are chock full of food! (With veggie options also available). Hot food and snacks like chips pretzels and pb&j sandwiches, sounds like a nice day out huh?
Speaking of which, the ultra marathons are on Sept 25th so get cracking and register now!