Beat the Winter Blues
When you look out the window at home and see heaps of snow or a sheet of ice across your car windshield, you can take comfort in the fact that it's about time for the Honolulu Marathon.
While many states are in the throes of winter's rage, Hawaii is still soaked in sun and ready for fun.
Every December, thousands of runners and many walkers line up in Honolulu for one of the biggest international marathons in the U.S.
The Honolulu Marathon started in 1973 with local runners, but has become one of the most important races in the country today.
Separate registration is offered for walkers, along with a substantially lower entry fee than runners must pay. This makes the race perfect for speed walkers looking for a winter race as well.
Honolulu Marathon Registration
There is no cap on the number of racers who can register, so you don't have to worry about this one shutting you out. Just make sure to register by November 4 of the year you want to race. After that date, you must deliver your entry by hand, since mail and fax entries are closed after that date.
Entries that are postmarked on or before November 4 will be accepted when they arrive. Since there is no cap on the number of entrants allowed, you can register the weekend of the event in person.
Online entries are accepted as well. All entries are confirmed online through a simple check system as well.
If you are a member of USA Track & Field or are registering as a competitor in the event, be aware that the Honolulu Marathon does conduct testing on competitors. This is in compliance with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.
Prerace Expo and Dinner
The Honolulu Marathon Expo is offered every year over the course of the weekend leading up to the race. This is where entrants must pick up their timing chips and numbers and is a fun place to hang out if you decide to make a vacation of the event.
The Expo is held in the Hawaii Convention Center and there are various spots throughout the city where you can catch a courtesy shuttle the event.
There is also a special luau that includes dinner, which race participants may choose to attend. There is an extra fee involved, but it is a great way to make the most of your weekend in Hawaii and meet others who will be standing around you when it comes time to line up at the race.
Honolulu Marathon Course
The course for the Honolulu Marathon is simply spectacular. You get to see some of the most important landmarks in the state, including the Iolani Palace and the massive Ala Moana Center.
Racers start out along the beach in a recreational area well known for swimming and surfing, but much of the course winds through downtown Honolulu and urban areas with some of the most interesting hot spots found along the way.
Some of the more interesting miles in the race come toward the end, when the course goes through some of the more exclusive residential areas of Honolulu. This area has a lot of hills and mountains, so it can be challenging for runners that have only trained for flat terrain. Yet, the area is beautiful to look at with huge homes all throughout the residential area.
The end of the race brings runners back to the water with a lighthouse and surfers within view. This is definitely a dynamic course that offers something new to look at with every turn.
The finish line is a complete party for participants. There is live entertainment and refreshments are available, so racers can celebrate making it over that final line. The varying terrain and scenery, completing the Honolulu Marathon is definitely something to be proud of and the celebration is well deserved.
The ending point is in Kapiolani Park, so it is the perfect place for loved ones watching the race to meet up with participants and have a good time.
Training for any marathon takes a lot of devotion and heart, but training for the Honolulu Marathon may be a bit different for some runners. This is because training must include work on hills, rather than just on flat land.
Runners who do not live in areas where hills and mountains naturally occur will need to get adventurous to train elsewhere or do some of their training on a treadmill with a good incline function.
Are you still searching for a marathon training plan that fits your needs? My 100 Day Marathon Plan review tells you all about Marius Bakken's revolutionary method to train for a marathon. Make sure to read it!
If you do make it to the finish line, you will have your picture taken as you cross the line. That is something to put up on the wall and be proud of!
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