Have you ever wondered what it would be like to run surrounded by thousands of women?
I’m sure most of you guys have, but ladies it’s an amazing experience and an opportunity to bond.
While I’m not down with the man bashing or women are better feeling that some people believe these races are about, I am down with finding ways to make women feel strong, powerful and capable of more.
I’m also down with chocolate and girls weekends!
There are some who argue that Women’s Only races are wrong for offering pampering or too many tutus and to them I say…lighten up. Not every race is for everyone. There are plenty of TOUGH, serious races you’ll see below, along with those that are all about having fun.
Yes, running and fun. Isn’t that part of what we’d like to promote to our friends? It’s a sneaky way to pull them in to a sport that we love!
10 Women’s Races Around the US
If you’ve decided that a getaway with some of your closest friends is order, why not make it a weekend that includes a little sweat. There is nothing that will bond you more!!
You can certainly do things like an active vacation or running retreat (which I’m an uber fan of), but those tend to be a bit more costly than picking a race and throwing in a spa day.
1. Nike Women’s Marathon and Half Marathon
These races are no longer occurring, but you still ask about it, so it’s on the list!
I was lucky enough to run this while they still hosted in San Francisco.
It was one of the original women’s only races and they went all out to make it both a race for those who wanted to push and an experience for those out to have a fun day with friends.
This was one of the biggest all women’s races and while the course is tough the amenities are outstanding…chocolate stations, men in tuxedo’s handing out Tiffany’s necklaces at the finish and all in a city that makes for an amazing vacation.You know how long ago this was because that’s me in a COTTON t-shirt…but cool views of the San Fran Bridge.
2. National Women’s Half Marathon
Luckily in Washington D.C. someone else stepped up to fill the void and there is now the National Women’s Half Marathon in May.
They host both a half marathon and 8K. Making it a great option for doing a run race without any comparison because how often do you find an 8k?!
You’ll wind through some incredible D.C. sites and your entry will benefit the American Heart Association.
Dedicated to giving you exactly what you need for a great race you’ll even find breast feeding tents at the start and finish! This organization actually does races in other cities too! Each one is slightly different based on that city.
- Napa Valley Women’s Half Marathon
- Las Vegas Women’s Half Marathon
- Naperville Women’s Half Marathon
- New Orleans Women’s Half Marathon
Zooma has taken it to the next level by creating a race series that affords you the opportunity to run in unique cities across the country in distances from the 5K to half marathon.
Their post race party includes wine, massages and a family friendly atmosphere…though it’s really all about a girls weekend!
This is another women’s race I’ve had a chance to do and had a great experience with friends. Ours was in Florida and the last 1/3 of a mile was along the sand….which I could have done without, but still super fun.
They do pick some smaller cities which make for fabulous racecations, but can also be pricier.
- Falmouth, MA
- Ameilia Island, FL
- Fredericksburg, TX
If you’re looking for an excuse to run with friends in some of the most beautiful places around, this series will meet that need!
From Puerto Rico to North Myrtle Beach these courses are designed to take in the great surroundings and create a party like environment. Running in head to toe pink, tutus or crowns are fully encouraged.
In fact, you’ll receive a pink tutu with your registration! And on the way to the finish line you’ll pass a boas and tiaras station, making it a lot like getting ready for a party photo booth!
5. Disney Princess Half Marathon
Once you get over the sticker shock of registering for any Disney race, you can settle in to a day of fun.
The Disney races are not place to set a PR, but rather to put on your favorite crown (what you don’t have one?) and stop for pictures along the way with a few other princesses like Sleeping Beauty and Snow White.
6. Mud Girl Run
If a crown isn’t your thing, then take it to the mud pits with a Mud Girl adventure run! These 5K events are designed to ensure that no matter what your current level of fitness is you can finish with a smile on your face and a little mud too.
Build a team of friends to do these races and you’ll have memories for a lifetime, along with a reason to break every mother’s rule about staying out of the mud.
Time to support the great Girls on the Run organization with your race entry! At these events you’ll find all-women’s 5K, 10K or 10 mile run. I love the variety of distances because it means you can go as a group and do what’s best for you that day.
Bonus points because those under 18 run free!! An excellent way to get kids excited about running.
Plus you’ll finish with a post race brunch. A great event in Twin Cities that’s well organized and ton of fun.
A great race through New York City with live music and a crowd that proves age doesn’t matter! One of the best things about this race to me is it’s truly about finding your limits.
Many of the races are more fun or pampering, this is a standard race with all the standard prizes by place.
Because who doesn’t love their story?! When you want to shake things up, why not hit the trails in stunning Moab. Possibly one of my favorite trail running locations ever tanks to the insanely beautiful red rock walls. The scenery will make this fun and slightly more challenging course worth it.
You’ll find a variety of race options: marathon, half Marathon, 15K, and marathon team race.
I continually hear so many great things from those who race in Indy that this felt like one that had to make the list. Held in the Fall it should be good weather and mama’s who love to run with the kiddos can use a jogging stroller in the 5K!
BONUS: Iron Girl Canada
If you want to expand your horizons beyond running, then this organization provides you with all the support and training tools you need to cross the finish line of your first triathlon.
For those more experienced in the swim, bike, run arena there are plenty of great competitors at these events to help push you to your best race.
I love that these races give more women a chance to line up feeling comfortable and confident. But mostly that it gives us an excuse to bond and travel!
Looking for some half marathon training tips?
- Half Marathon Pace Chart
- 18 Things I Wish I’d Known Before My First Half Marathon
- Training for a Sub Two Hour Half Marathon
- Half Marathon Fueling Strategy
Other ways to connect with Amanda
Instagram Daily Fun: RunToTheFinish
Facebook Community Chatter: RunToTheFinish
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