Should I Do The Runner's World Challenge?

by - Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Not long after I crossed the finish line of the Philadelphia Marathon last year, I knew I would be back to do the half marathon this year.


It's a great course in a great city and the entire event is extremely well organized.

Plus the race is in mid-November, when temperatures are ideal for racing. Not too hot, not too cold. And the mostly flat course makes it the perfect place to PR.

Post race pretzel

The big question mark in my mind is whether or not to run this race as part of the Runner's World Challenge.

By running with the Runner's World Challenge I'd get:
  • A training plan designed by Bart Yasso
  • Weekly e-mails from Bart explaining the workouts for the week ahead
  • Access to a private website for runners taking the Challenge
  • A trial of RW's Personal Trainer online training tool
  • A copy of "Going Long", the "Runner's World Guide to Road Racing", or "The Runner's Field Manual" (your choice)
  • A technical t-shirt with the Runner's World Challenge logo
  • A race entry
  • Access to VIP areas near the start and finish lines (private bathrooms!)
  • Race-day packet pickup
  • Free postrace massage
  • A special baggage-check area
  • An opportunity to hang out with Bart Yasso, and the editors of Runner's World
That's a long list, but the most important thing to me on there is the training plan designed to help you reach your goals, although the private bathrooms would be nice too. The lines last year were ridic.

Anyway, I think it would be fun to run with the editors and have Bart Yasso put together a plan based on my goals.

Here's the catch. The cost of the Runner's World Challenge is $199. The cost of the Philly half is either $75, $85 or $100 depending when I register.

I know I can successfully run a half marathon without help. I've done it countless times. So I'm trying to decide if the extra $100 is worth it knowing that there are many other races I want to run in the fall that have their own set of expensive entry fees. At the same time though, the RW Challenge could be the extra something I need to help break the two hour mark.

I posed the question on Twitter and got some good feedback.

philly tweet 2

philly tweet

But I'm still unsure.

So blogging friends, what do you think? Is the Runner's World Challenge worth the extra $100 or should I do this one on my own?

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