Why I Won’t Bandit a Race

Saturday is the Rock n Roll Marathon and Half Marathon in DC, the following weekend is the Shamrock Marathon/Half in Virginia Beach (which I did last year)…I was really hoping to do one of them but, as I’m on the job hunt, race entry is not on my list of necessities before a steady paycheck comes in.

So, why don’t I just run rock-n-roll anyway? I have a Garmin, I could time myself. No way. I am super opposed to banditing races. Most races are non-profit events, many are either raising money for some organization or set up as a community event. A lot of resources and planning go into planning a marathon. Streets have to be blocked off, police are usually along the course, having a course officially measured is an intense process, race entries exist to cover the cost of the event, water and gatorade and fuel are provided.

Many races (not including Rock-n-Roll, by the way) don’t make a profit, they charge what they need to in order to put on the event. Some races, like Marine Corps, charge participants less than what the even costs because there is so much sponsorship from other companies and organizations. So, if I’m going to participant in an event that took a huge amount of planning, I need to pay for it and not tax the already limited resources that go into it.

Plus, one of the joys of doing a race is having an official time. Even though I wouldn’t say I’ve ever really “raced,” I do like having official times. I’m thinking my next race will have a goal, though, what do you think? So, I’m going to have to sit out this weekend (unless someone wants to sponsor me? :-) or I am offered a job in the next 56 hours) and keep going and going to get ready for the next race.

Random side: As I was looking for the article I read a couple years about official course measurements (which I couldn’t find), I found this DC Rainmaker post about why we often run farther than the distance. It’s a great (and detailed – like all of his posts) explanation – I did a 26.7 mile marathon and when I tell people this they’re confused…even when I try to explain how/what that happens. I now can direct everyone to this article. Yay!