Deciding to run a marathon is no small thing. It takes training, hard effort, and grit to get yourself ready and stick with the race until the end. Beyond this, some marathons are massive public events with thousands of participants, cameras, and news organizations. The following will examine everything you need to know about one marathon in particular: the Los Angeles Marathon.
What Is the LA Marathon?
The Los Angeles Marathon is one of the five biggest marathons in the United States with more than 27,000 participants. In 2021, the marathon is taking place on November 7th beginning at Dodger Stadium and ending at Avenue of the Stars in Century City and is being presented by ASICS. The marathon is part of The McCourt Foundation fundraising campaign to help patients and families affected by neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, MS, ALS, and Parkinson’s disease. This being said, the foundation is always expanding its efforts.
Do I Need to Register?
Yes. You can’t just show up and run in the marathon, you’ve got to register beforehand. Registration involves paying a registration fee ($200) and will enter you in the marathon, plus give you some swag. You’ll get a Los Angeles Marathon bib, a finisher medal, an ASICS finisher shirt, a finished festival entry, and a drink ticket if you’re over the American drinking age which is 21.
Is There a Team Element?
There can be! The Los Angeles Marathon has a Corporate Challenge which makes for an excellent team-building exercise for workplace colleagues entering together. The title of Fittest Company in Los Angeles will be given out to one lucky team.
Are There Any Additional Challenges?
If you want to push yourself even further, you can turn the run into a marathon weekend and cover 29.3 miles over the course of two days by running both the Los Angeles Marathon and the LA Big 5K. If this is accomplished, you’ll end up with the LA Double Play medal. The LA Marathon is also part of the 2021 Conquer LA Challenge. This challenge involves running in three separate races: the La Marathon, the Rose Bowl Half Marathon, and the Santa Monica Classic.
What Should I Bring to the Run?
Everyone is going to have their own preferences when it comes to marathon supplies. This being said, it’s a good idea to carry with you some form of fuel (energy gels and nut butters are really popular options), a GPS device with a full battery in case you get a little turned around (it happens to at least one person every year, no judgment) but also for keeping an eye on your pacing, water, and a water bottle, layered clothing to keep you warm during the early morning hours and cool as the day progresses, sunglasses, a hat or sweatband, and sunscreen. Furthermore, Runner’s Lab points out that you need a solid pair of running shoes that can handle the event but are also suited to your stride, gait, and arch support needs. Before leaving the house, it’s a good idea to apply a lubricant or Vaseline to anywhere rubbing could cause soreness.
I Don’t Want to Run, Can I Volunteer?
Yes. The McCourt Foundation accepts volunteers to help manage the LA Marathon. You can submit your information on their website. Volunteering is a great way to show support for a cause you believe in if you are unable to run in the marathon itself.
I Don’t Want to Run or Volunteer, Can I Still Help?
Yes. If you’re unable to make the dates or show up in person either by running or volunteering there are still options for you. The McCourt Foundation accepts donations on their website to support the beautiful causes they work with. You have the option of making a one-time donation as well as a monthly, quarterly, or annual donation of whatever dollar amount you choose. There is also the option of dedicating your donation in honor or memory of someone.
Are There COVID-19 Considerations?
While it is hard to predict how things are going to look in November with any accuracy, it is safe to assume that alterations to the day might be made if the virus situation calls for it. Given the nature of marathons, the social distance might prove more difficult during the beginning and end of the race than standard outings so extra precaution will need to be taken. If you are concerned about protecting yourself during the run, there are masks available on the market that have been specifically designed for runners.
The above information should get you on your way to understanding the LA Marathon. Of course, you can reach out to the event team beforehand if you have any nuanced questions. As well, there are tons of marathon running forums around the internet that can help you with the specifics of running, training, and pace strategizing.
Tags: 2021 Conquer LA Challenge, 29.3 miles, ASICS, Avenue of the Stars, Century City, Dodger Stadium, LA Marathon, LA Marathon 2021, Los Angeles Marathon, McCourt Foundation, Runner’s Lab, Santa Monica
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