My Award Picks for 2016 (& TOTR)

Last year I linked up with Montana from Pretty Lil Mudder and bunch of other bloggers to give out some awards to the races that I ran.  It was fun so I decided to do it again.

Since I ran 43 races, I had no problem finding a race for each category but it was difficult to just pick ONE race.

Most Scenic Course –

I loved having views of the Gulf while running the Music Half Marathon (in Sarasota, FL).

It was also awesome to run with views of the fall foliage and the river during the Ramblefest Half Marathon (in Adams, MA).

Ashuwillticook Rail Trail

this is the trail we ran on (but in the rain)

Most Challenging Course

Hills are not my friend so I’d say that the most challenging course was Celebrate Life Half Marathon (in the Catskill Mountains).


There were quite a few rolling hills in the Lake George Half Marathon too.


Best Course Support (aid stations, volunteers, people cheering you on, etc)

Again, the crowds come out in mass to support the Vermont City Marathon runners. People were out there cheering the whole race and there was an abundance of water stations and volunteers even during the heart wave. (There were literally life savers for me and others running this race.)

Best Expo

Vermont City Marathon had the best expo. In fact, of the 7 half marathons, this was the only big expo that I attended.


Technically the NYC Marathon had the best expo but I didn’t run that race but went to it to pick up my bib for the 5k.


Best Swag

In addition to the normal race shirt, at the Apple Run 5k, you got a backpack, sunglasses, water bottle, and other goodies.

Most Unique Medal/Award

The most unique medal I received was the handmade wood one from the Camp Chingachgook Challenge.


I get tons of medals for age group awards so I was excited to get something different. I loved winning a Fitbit & $25 gift card to LL Bean at the LL Bean Bright Night 5k and $50 gift card to the Recovery Room restaurant and champagne  at the Malta 5k.


I also like to get practical things. So winning this baseball hat at the Saratoga Palio Half Marathon was great. I’ve already worn it several times.


Best Post-Race Food/Beverages

Definitely one of the reasons I run the Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k is the food. They have chocolate milk (from a nearby farm), homemade cookies & muffins, chili, pizza, vegetarian rice dish, etc.

But the Sarasota Music Half Marathon also had an amazing breakfast buffet.

Best Race Shirt-

On the whole, I didn’t love most of my race shirts. But I guess my favorite would be the sweatshirt that we received at the Celebrate Life Half Marathon.


Favorite Overall Race

That’s a tough one. I enjoyed so many of my races this year.

I’d have to say the Dash the Finish 5k because I got to run in NYC with three Russian ladies and cross the NYC Marathon finish line.

And of course, the Panama City Beach Half Marathon. Running and spending the weekend with seven blogger/friends was amazing and #HoLottaFun.

Race You Are Most Proud of Yourself for Completing

I am proud of completing ALL my races. None ever seem easy. I am especially proud that I can run 13.1 miles!!

But I would have to say that I am proud that I finished the Vermont City Marathon Relay because of how difficult the weather conditions were.

crossing the finish line even though the race had been cancelled & I had to fight to get a medal.

And the Ramblefest Half Marathon because it my only PR this year and it was cold, raining and totally unexpected.


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with these wonderful ladies:

Erika @ MCM Mama Runs, Marcia @ Marcia’s Healthy Slice and Patty @ My no-guilt life for

Happy Running! What awards would you give to the races you ran in 2016?


18 thoughts on “My Award Picks for 2016 (& TOTR)

  1. My most challenging race was absolutely Phoenix, and probably the one I’m most proud of completing.

    It was a really sparse year in the race tee department, though, so I’m with you on the Celebrate Life sweatshirt (and am sad it’s a jacket, not a sweatshirt, this year).


  2. What a great recap, the best of the best! I’m not seeing too many snowy and cold races in there though, hehe! And that really was amazing during that heatwave when you pushed to the finish line anyway! #respect


  3. 43 races in one year is quite impressive Darlene! Sure makes my little “race-a-month” challenge pale in comparison 🙂 Congratulations on a great year of running in some beautiful places with cool awards/swag! Best wishes for 2017!


  4. Loved reading this and although I probably would not be able to run any of these races due to location, there certainly were some great perks and awards for some of them. My award would go to London Marathon followed closely by the Chicago Marathon. Actually, I am a pretty big fan of most of the races I did this year except the Thanksgiving day race. I really do not like 5k’s and despite winning my AG, I am not sure I will run any more 5 k’s. I love to run long distances and hate the short fast races.


  5. What a great idea! I think my grand total came to 17 races….so I don’t have as much of a selection as you LOL Hands down, I’d have to give the “toughest race” award to Route 66…nonstop hills, lots of wind, and that darn hip/groin achy-ness that played with my mind and really made for a tough race…I never worked so hard for a finish line. Ever.


  6. Wow, 43 races – that’s so impressive!!! I love the variety of age group awards you’ve won. Mine usually consist of a gift certificate to my favorite running store (I run a lot of their sponsored races), some sort of little plaque or trophy, or an additional medal. My favorite, though, is the cowbell I’ve won twice at the Leesburg 20K which has a farm theme!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.