My quest for 50 states begins in late September, early October. I have 3 states complete (MN, WI and TN) just 47 to go.
The really fun part of doing 50 states is all the research you get to do that ultimately helps you decide which marathon you will do when. In order to get in 50 by 60, I have to choose multiple marathons in multiple states and then try to figure out how to train for them. Let's see at 4 marathons a year, hey that won't work I am going to need to average almost 5 a year, man there are a lot of states.
To get the quest going I initially decided to knock off Iowa. If that sounds easy, well it wasn't. First there were 3 marathons in Iowa within 2 weeks of each other. They are:
On the Road for Education in Mason City
Siouxland Louis and Clark in Sioux City
Des Moines in well Des Moines
I initially wanted to do Mason City as it's only a couple of hours from the Twin Cities and would be easy to coordinate travel, etc... The problem with it, I was going into it overweight, under trained or said another way SLOW......... So if I run it, I would be one of the last finishers as my best guess is that my time will be between 5 and 5:15. In 2006 there were 95 finishers, 10 runners finished over 5 hours, 5 runners finished after 5:15.
My next choice was Siouxland - 118 finishers in 2006, 20 or so over 5 hours about 5 hours away. The interesting part about Siouxland was that it starts in Nebraska and ends in Iowa which means I could use it for either state but not both in reading the 50 states rules. Did you know there are at least two 50 state clubs? I didn't so is my goal 50 states or is 50 and DC, yet another thing to plan. Here are links to the clubs:
50 States Marathon Club
50 and DC Marathon Group USA
Then there was Des Moines about 4 hours or so away 1000+ finishers in 2006 more than 50+ over 5 hours. The course looked interesting, you kind of meander around downtown in a circular kind of loop, the kind of course I like, lots of turns no long straight aways. Ok Des Moines it is, that is unless you know something about 14 year old girls and a certain band called the Jonas Brothers. They were coming to town and my daughter just had to go, they were the warm up band for Hannah Montana, yes even I had heard of her, she is Billy Ray Cyrus's (Achy Breaky Heart) little girl and has a show on Disney, just in case you don't know. The concert was Sunday, the marathon was Sunday morning a bit hard to coordinate if my day goes bad. What to do? Then I heard the news, Hanna Montana tickets were almost impossible to get. Ok, I would wait and see and then decide what to do. As there was no way they would get tickets, ok wrong again they did. New plan choose an alternate, I could do On the Road, not what I wanted to do, did I have another option and sure enough after a quick visit to:
A new plan was hatched, just how far away is Kansas City, the answer is around 6 or so hours and they have a marathon on Saturday, that could work, the review looked ok although it said it was hilly. What does that mean????? It doesn't matter, it's a go, Kansas City here we come.
My report on Kansas City will come shortly but as a tease I discovered yet another flaw in my race strategy. I think this is mistake number, ok I have lost track.