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Marathon Nation Re-Launch and FREE Race Entry

23 January

Marathon Nation LogoNext week we’re finally going to re-launch Marathon Nation. After eight months and over 100 finish lines, we are finally in a place with all of our content, training plans and support to be able to offer a really amazing experience for runners of any ability level training for almost any distance.

On Wednesday I’ll tell you more about it, and on Friday we’ll open the doors for everyone on the Early Bird email list (you can sign up here). Then on Monday we’ll open it to everyone else who is still interested. Spots will be limited, but I can’t really comment on where I’ll draw the line…so getting in early is better.

But first! Let’s have some fun and give away a free race entry.

I get a lot of questions about picking the right marathon, many of them from newer runners. “Should I race close to home? How hard is it to race internationally?” Should I do a fun first marathon or go for time?” Those are some of the questions that come up, over and over.

Picking a first marathon (or half marathon) is a very personal experience…you’ll know the right race when you find it. At that point all you have to do is sign up and then start getting ready.

Marathon Nation will be helping lots of people build running fitness and get race ready, starting next week. But before we open the doors to the masses next week, I wanted to help someone from our broader community get a free race entry to their next big race.

This weekend I’ll be giving away one Race Entry Free Card — up to $300 — to one of our readers who can use it.

‘Free Race Entry Anywhere’ Giveaway! Here’s How It Works

The Race Entry Re-Imbursement can be redeemed for a race entry anywhere within North America, anywhere within Europe, anywhere within Asia, or anywhere within Australia/New Zealand.

The winner needs to:

a) Send me the reciept for their race entry, along with their mailing address.

b) Deposit the check I write them for race entry (now we’re even!).

c) Take pictures and report back to us with a blog post or video update after s/he hits the finish line!

That’s it. If you win, I’m paying you back for your race entry up to $300. You’re on your own to pick and sign up for your race. Two things to know:

1) You have to register for the race — we don’t have any secret entries to closed out events; and

2) If your race entry is only $175, you do not get the remainder of the $300 to spend on food or lodging.

Post a Comment to Enter

Please post a short comment on the site saying where you’d like to race and why. By entering the contest, you agree that you really will run the race if your entry is the winner.

Our usual biased judges, including my feline computer companion Daisy (and other more helpful friends), will select one person for a free race entry.

That’s it! See you on Wednesday with more on the Marathon Nation Re-Launch…and good luck. The deadline for comments is Tuesday at 17:00 EST.

If the biased judges choose your entry, where will you use your free trip?

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46 Responses to “Marathon Nation Re-Launch and FREE Race Entry”

  1. elaine February 26, 2011 at 5:23 am #

    shamrock marathon! my friend, shamrock sean, is running it as his first – so i’ll be there to run & for support! plus, it’s a good training run for american river 50, which i’ll be running 3 weeks later:)

  2. Sue Siragusa February 22, 2011 at 1:05 am #

    I’m running the Glass City Marathon in April in my first bid to qualify for Boston. Nothing would make me happier than to reach the goal of qualifying and being able to share my experience would be priceless.
    In other words… Pick Me… Pick Me!

  3. Karla January 28, 2011 at 4:47 am #

    This year is my first marathon and we’ve chosen Vermont City Marathon in May. We just started running about 9 months ago and have completed several smaller races closer to home. We chose Vermont since that is where my husband is from and it just seemed “right”. I run for many reasons related to my own fitness, but as a home health and hospice nurse, I see patients every day that have lost the ability to perform the smallest task for themselves. Its easy to push yourself a little harder, a little farther, when just hours earlier you care for people who struggle for every breath they take. As a result, I never take any day for granted and each run is dedicated to those people who can no longer run themselves.

  4. Megan D. January 26, 2011 at 11:57 pm #

    I think running a race for free sounds like the BEST THING EVER! Who cares where I am running it, right? lol. Well, I signed up a few months back for my first marathon – in Ogden, Utah, this May. I am dreaming (and training too) of qualifying for Boston at this marathon. Can you imagine if I DID qualify and ran it for free. Now that is the American running dream! ;) I also would love to get into the St. George marathon or take the family to Disneyland and run the marathon there. Thanks for the awesome giveaway and the informative site!

  5. JP Miller January 26, 2011 at 9:25 pm #

    I would love to register for and run the Kona marathon – since I may never get to do the Ironman there…Besides, my wife would love it if I took her to Hawaii

  6. Roy S January 26, 2011 at 6:04 pm #

    In my last two marathons, I have bonked out. I’m sure it’s because I have not taken care of my nutrition. I am really eager (or anxious!) to get back on the road, with a nutrition plan in mind, and gel packs in hand, and see how I can do. I’m running in the Earth Day Challenge Marathon in Gambier, Ohio. I like the small field, and expect the experience to be a fun, intimate, satisfying one.

  7. Angela January 26, 2011 at 5:59 pm #

    I’d like to run the NYC marathon as my 2nd full marathon. What a thrill!!!!

  8. Maggie D January 26, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    I ran NYC marathon last year and I believe my brother is running this year, I would love to run it again this year since we are both so competitive and see how I do racing with him/against him, friendly brother and sister competition.

  9. Nicolette Kennedy January 25, 2011 at 11:30 pm #

    I want to run the Chicago Marathon this year :) I ran it last year for my first marathon at 19, and I loved it!! I really want to improve my time this year, and my goal is to raise $1000 for the National MS Society w/ team Run to Stop MS! I’d love to have a free entry, because I’m a broke college kid and any money I can save can be put towards the MS Society to help find a cure for people living with MS, like my mom.

  10. Brenda January 25, 2011 at 8:29 pm #

    I wan to race in the St Jude marathon in Tennessee to help raise money for kids with cancer.

  11. Lauren January 25, 2011 at 6:09 pm #

    I would love to run the Missoula Marathon! I have only run a few marathons before and am doing Boston in April, but I would like to run a marathon close enough in proximity for my relatives to be in attendance! That hasn’t happened thus far, but I can make that happen by running in Missoula, MT!!

  12. Peter C January 25, 2011 at 5:01 pm #

    I want to run the San Francisco Marathon in July. I ran my last marathon in a prisoners costume (black and white stripes). I think it would be cool to do the same thing in SF and tell people I just escaped from Alcatraz.

  13. Megan January 25, 2011 at 3:58 pm #

    I am going to run my first marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon, this fall. After doing 4 (6 by this fall) half marathons, I’m ready to tackle the full distance!

    Hi Daisy – Meow :)

  14. Jeff Beck January 25, 2011 at 3:55 pm #

    I would love to run the St George Marathon this year… though the where is not as important as the why. Last year I attempted my first marathon, but was completely destroyed by a nasty IT Band issue that came screaming up several miles into the race. Now I find myself itching to prove to myself that I really can complete a full marathon. As St. George is much later in the year, I feel it will give me plenty of time to prepare.

  15. Stephanie January 25, 2011 at 3:42 pm #

    I’m attempting my second marathon (first was Boston in 2010) and this time I want to get it done in NYC….and I might just do it in Red Sox gear haha. 2 Cities, 2 teams, 1 rivalry. I love Boston and New York and am beyond excited to have both of these marathons as notches on my marathon belt!

  16. Anthony January 25, 2011 at 3:38 pm #

    I’m going to Rome in 7 weeks! It will be my 10th marathon so it will be a special occasion for me.

  17. Desiree Koh January 25, 2011 at 12:36 pm #

    Hello! I have signed up for Berlin Marathon 2011 on September 25. My goal is to set a P.R. while sporting a big grin throughout the race (currently, mine is 3:55:14 from Dublin Marathon last October), but more importantly, to have tons and tons of fun training and getting ready for the race, and enjoying the camaraderie with running friends from all over the world.

    Every year, Team Runnerds (as we call ourselves) picks a destination race based on our re-hydration of choice post-race. Last year at Dublin, the team motto was “Guinness at the Finish.” This year, the team motto is “Berlin Marathon –> Oktoberfest.” Whoever said running is an individual sport? We have so much fun training together, if virtually at times, and so much fun getting to the finish line and then celebrating as a team. After all, why do we do this if we don’t have fun, right?

  18. Karleen C January 25, 2011 at 12:16 pm #

    I would like to run the Hartford Half Marathon. I ran my first half marathon last year…learned a lot…want to try again. Plus, I am working on my cancer recovery plan (surgery was 1 1/2 weeks ago). Knowing I am committed to Hartford would help keep me focused and motivated.

  19. Eric January 25, 2011 at 5:42 am #

    I would run NYC in November. At my 2010 marathon, I used the Marathon Nation race plan worksheet and was mentally poised to stay in control of my race as other runners bolted at the start. I eventually caught the last one at mile 18 and then won by over 8 minutes. My time of 2:45 (a drop of 35 minutes from my first and only other marathon in 2003) secures me guaranteed entry into NYC, but I would only be able to afford it with the assistance from Marathon Nation. I will be lowering my P.R. at Grandma’s Marathon in 2011 and will likely be able to write a reflection on running sub-2:40 at NYC.

  20. Jay Kelly January 25, 2011 at 1:47 am #

    I am a veteran marathoner who has slowed down and wants to get back to his running potential. I would love to run Marine Corps and qualify for Boston (3:25). Second choice: Grizzly Marathon in MT!

  21. Ryan S January 25, 2011 at 1:25 am #

    After running several half-marathons I have decided that this is the year that I am stepping it up to the full distance. I am planning on running my first marathon at the Chicago Marathon. Very excited about running the race and then a few days later traveling to the country of Jordan for 2 weeks to serve the people there rebuilding homes and working with kids at a sports camp.

  22. Sarah Merchlewitz January 24, 2011 at 11:52 pm #

    I would run the Warsaw Marathon in Poland. I did my first ever longer than a 5k race there (Warsaw Halfmarathon) in 2008. Now, a few more halfs and a full marathon later, I’d like to go back to Warsaw to see how far I’ve come.

  23. Karen January 24, 2011 at 11:48 pm #

    hmmm. Maybe my first attempt didn’t work?

    My first marathon will be this year. Either Marine Corps, Virginia Beach Rock n Roll or the Great Eastern Endurance (trail) Run. I have my first real trail run next week to see whether I should even keep that in the running.

    I’m thinking – BEACH!

  24. Ali G January 24, 2011 at 11:48 pm #

    I would run the Maui Marathon in September. I have never done a destination marathon, and my husband says it would be no fun for me to be running during our vacation. It would be a perfect excuse to run the marathon during a vacation if I got the entry fee for free!!

  25. Karen January 24, 2011 at 11:46 pm #

    My virgin marathon this year – it is a toss up between Marine Corps, Eastern Endurance (trail) and Rock n Roll Virginia Beach.

    I have my first real trail run next week to see if I keep the trail one in the “running”. Otherwise – I’m thinking BEACH!

  26. Michelle Taylor January 24, 2011 at 9:41 pm #

    I’d pick the MDI Marathon (Maine) as my free race! I have plans to run it with at least 3 other first timers!!!!

  27. Keath January 24, 2011 at 7:58 pm #

    I know it’s cliché, but NYC would have to be my pick. I’m on year three of the lottery, so if I don’t get picked for 2011 I’m guaranteed for 2012. If I can hold off on running another full marathon before that, it would be marathon #10 for me, plus the first one that I might be able to convince family (in NJ) to come support me for.

    [Actually, I'd love to run the Midnight Sun Marathon in Tromsø, Norway, as number 10, but you're not offering to pay my airfare, are you? ;-)]

  28. Bev Richardson January 24, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

    I would like to run the Lake Kawaguchi Marathon in Japan. My cousin Matt recently moved to Japan and married a beautiful Japanese girl named Saori. Unfortunately the relationship between my cousin and his mother is strained, and my aunt has not yet been able to visit Japan to meet her new daughter-in-law. My aunt Jan often comes to my races to cheer me on. I would love to give her an excuse to go to Japan so that she can finally meet Saori.

  29. Robin B January 24, 2011 at 5:16 pm #

    I just started running in August and already did one Half Marathon. I am trying to chose my first full Marathon. I am considering Disney… which gives me 11 months to train! I applied for the lottery for New York, fingers crossed!!

  30. Tj January 24, 2011 at 5:04 pm #

    I would love a free entry to the New York City Marathon – which I am hoping to get into in November.

  31. Robert G January 24, 2011 at 5:00 pm #

    Thanks for this opportunity, I would use my entry for one of the Rock-N-Roll races, either Phoenix or Las Vegas; also would like to do the Marine Corps Marathon.

    Thanks again!

  32. Erin D. January 24, 2011 at 5:00 pm #

    I would love to run the Disney Marathon in January 2012. I read several race reports from this year’s race, and it sounds like a really fun race. Disney certainly knows how to do things up with style!

  33. Maris January 24, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

    I want to run the 2011 Dublin marathon in Dublin Ireland. My father is in Ireland and I’d like him and my 3 brothers to see me cross the finish line for not only a finish line celebration but a family reunion.

  34. Elaine January 24, 2011 at 4:53 pm #

    I’d love a free entry to the Michelob Ultra Challenge at the Gasparialla Festival in Tampa, FL.
    Plus, you’d get 4 finish line photos!
    http://www.tampabayrun.com/Race_Info/Michelob_Ultra___Beck_s_Light_Challenge.htm

  35. Tammy D January 24, 2011 at 4:51 pm #

    I would love this opportunity. I have a ‘rematch’ with the start line of the Venice Marathon this year- after a mediocre finish last year and the knowledge that my running days are probably numbered to a few years due to health issues. I would love to exceed my goal time this year!

  36. Jeff A January 24, 2011 at 4:33 pm #

    I would use the free entry for Chicago 2011, this is where it all began for me in 2006 and would love to go back and make it my 10th marathon, plan to run with a group of great friends and can’t wait.

  37. Roy S. January 24, 2011 at 4:26 pm #

    I would like to race the Haunted Hustle in Middleton, Wisconsin, so i can beat my 2010 “first marathon” time. Last year, as a marathon virgin, I ran 4:23:46. This year, I’m shooting for 3:50!

  38. Amy S January 24, 2011 at 2:27 pm #

    I would love to run the Twin Cities Marathon in October of 2011. I live in Kansas, and work as a weekend meteorologist, so don’t get the opportunity to see my family very often (they live in Minnesota). I am getting married in November, and want to find a fall race to keep me in shape for my wedding, plus, it is a great excuse to get to Minnesota and see my family! That being said, with my wedding this year, money is very tight and I don’t have a lot of extra funds to spend on races. :( I would love this opportunity! Thank you!

  39. Marcia Valenzuela January 24, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

    I would like to run the Las Vegas Marathon to try to encourage my family to get into running as well.

  40. Joel M January 24, 2011 at 3:30 am #

    The Vermont City Marathon is where I’m making my commitment this year. Signed up for the race, booked hotel & air, car reserved. Now I just have to do the work to make all this planning pay off.

  41. Valerie January 23, 2011 at 10:47 pm #

    I would love to do Big Sur marathon. It’s definitely on my bucket list.

  42. Jessica Easterling January 23, 2011 at 6:24 pm #

    I would love to win this contest because I have never ran a Marathon, just half marathons. This would give me the motivation to run one. I would love to run my first marathon in Chicago,IL. Because i heard this is the best one for first marathoners.

  43. Nemo January 23, 2011 at 6:07 pm #

    I’m planning and hoping to run the Chicago Marathon this year. It is the 10 year anniversary for a group of friends who all ran it together back in 2001 and we are all hoping to be healthy enough to repeat the weekend of fun together! This time, perhaps without suffering so much during the race :-)

  44. Katie Tryjankowski January 23, 2011 at 5:40 pm #

    I would love to win free entry into the Inaugural Dodge Latin Music Miami Beach ½ Marathon on December 11, 2011. http://runrocknroll.competitor.com/miamibeach I usually don’t do much racing in the month of December. I live in the snowy area of Buffalo, NY so a reason take place in the historic first Miami Rock N’ Roll HM would be amazing. Not to mention my race fees for the year are already expensive enough. So tell that beautiful feline to pick me :)

  45. Paula Tansey January 23, 2011 at 5:37 pm #

    I want to run Maine Corps this year. I’ve run three full marathons so far (two in Philly and Disney as part of the Goofy Challenge). I’m registered for Gettysburg this year and would love to do Marine Corps as well. Thanks.

  46. Cassie E January 23, 2011 at 5:20 pm #

    I just started running in October, and I’m planning to run my first half marathon in June. It’s the See Jane Run in Boise, ID. Can’t wait!

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