Modest marathon growth in the U.S. last year, but plenty of record highs including total finishers for the classic 26.2 mile distance
Running USA wire
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Over the past decade, marathons in the U.S. and worldwide have been part of the Second Running Boom's unprecedented upward trend line, and 2011 was another year of growth in U.S. marathons with an estimated record 518,000 finishers or a 2.2% increase from 2010, a modest increase compared to recent years (9.9% in 2009 and 8.6% in 2010). See U.S. marathon finisher table further below.
Part of the slowing growth for the 26.2 mile distance may be attributed to the explosive growth of the half-marathon over the past 5 years in the U.S. as runners either have moved down from their first or second marathon to the half-marathon or see the half-marathon as a more manageable, but as challenging distance for their time and aspirations. In addition, a majority of large marathons have entrant caps which - due to the Rule of Large Numbers - will impact the overall percent growth, particularly if non-capped and debut marathons don't attract a larger number of entrants compared to past years.
By Bryan Graydon
Why do you run? How many times have you been asked that one? When I am out to dinner with friends on a Saturday evening and pass on that second beer because I have to run in the morning, they look at me funny and ask, “Why do you run?” When I tell people I go to bed at 9:00pm so I can get up at 3:15am to run, I always get asked, “Why do you run?” I often think of the self-induced torture I put myself through in those wee hours of the morning and I look in the mirror and ask, “Why do you run?”
I have often reflected on this question and it’s a simple answer. One of the reasons is a three letter word that sometimes has a negative stigma attached to it, but we all possess it to some degree and that is ego. I like being able to say that I run marathons, which is something that less than 2% of the world’s population will ever do. Is it wrong that part of the reason I run is for egotistical gratification? Probably a little, but we will just make that our little secret.
Tianna Madison runs world-leading time in 60-meter final, qualifying for World Indoor Championships; Duane Solomon defends title in 800-meters
LEXINGTON, MA - Global performance running footwear and apparel brand Saucony today announced that Saucony athletes Tianna Madison and Duane Solomon claimed 2012 USA National Championship titles to highlight the second day of the U.S. Indoor championships at the Albuquerque Convention Center on Sunday, February 26th, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
There are a lot of a lot of championship RRCA races this year in the 13 southeastern states covered by Running Journal.
THREE NATIONAL CHAMPIONHIPS:
Germantown Half Marathon
Germantown, TN - March 18.
14th Annual NC Roadrunners Club Invitational 1/2 Marathon & 10K
Cary, NC - May 20.
Anniston, AL - August 4.