1. Cherry Blossom Ten Miler. April 12, 2015. Not to be missed. This race is a DC institution and self dubbed "Runner's Rite of Spring". People travel from all over the US, hoping to get perfect race conditions that line up with peak blooms! The lottery is over, but they do allow for bib transfers. People are always selling their bibs as the race gets closer....so keep an eye out and put the word out that you are looking!
2. Marine Corps Marathon. October 25, 2015. "More Than a Race". So true. You will feel such emotion and pride for your country running this one. You will feel an amazing sense of gratitude for our service members and their families. You can't beat the amazing 26.2 mile tour of the Washington, DC area...staring at the Pentagon, running past monuments, the Potomac River and ending at the Iwo Jima Memorial. Entry for this race is also by lottery which opens March 13, 2015. You can get guaranteed registration by running the 17.75k on March 28, 2015, but of course that will sell out quickly as well. Registration for this race is on March 11, 2015 and will sell out in a matter of minutes.
3. Navy Air Force Half Marathon Sunday Sept. 20, 2015. This race is a great PR friendly course - mostly flat, start at the Washington Monument, through the monuments of DC and Rock Creek Park. It comes in early September at the perfect time when all your hot summer training lends to a PR on the cool race morning! It's a perfect race too because it hasn't become so popular (YET!) as it's relatively new and so there is no lottery for this one. But mark my words....it will grow every year! Registration opened Feb. 2nd and use code COLLEEN at registration to be entered to win a tech tee! Register here: http://navyairforcehalfmarathon.com/
4. Annapolis Running Classic November 2015 Date TBD based of the Navy Football schedule. Great race through historic Annapolis. Not flat and not a PR race, but the after party will make the 13.1 mile jaunt well worth your time. Lots of micro-brews and unlimited oysters in the party tent. They always have amazing premiums for the runners as well.
5. Smuttynose Half Marathon Great seacoast course and a great medal with the Smuttynose Harbol Seal on the medal! The beachfront after-party in true New England style is fantastic as well. Lobster rolls, clam chowder, and Smuttynose Beer!
6. Nike Women's Half Marathon San Francisco. October 2015. With no DC race this year, San Fran is your only US Nike Women's race to get that coveted Tiffany necklace at the finish line. Entry is through lottery, unless you can prove that you are a college student and get guaranteed entry. The course is hilly, but should afford you some great views of the city. Unless it is socked in by fog of course! But as always SF is a great city and it is a great destination race.
7. New York City Marathon. Nov. 1, 2015. Need I say more? The lottery is open right now 1/15/15-2/15/15. What are you waiting for?
8. Army Ten Miler. October 11, 2015. A great racing distance, the 10 miler. This is also a very popular race and sells out very quickly so you have to stay on top of registration when it opens on May 19, 2015.
9. Mountains to Beach Marathon May 24, 2015 A great Boston Qualifier that is slightly downhill the whole way from Ojai to the Beach. Sponsored by Cliff Bar, you know you will be getting some great fuel along the course!
10. Lululemon SeaWheeze Half Marathon. August 15 2015 This race is already sold out for this summer and not sure if they allow bib transfers, but keep your eyes peeled for next year. You can still attend the Sunset Festival attached to the race as tickets can be purchased separately if you aren't running. A great waterfront course in Vancouver plus sunset yoga festival and concert.
11. Thinking Ahead to 2016! January 2016. Clearwater Distance Festival! A beautiful course with great ocean views. A fantastic beach destination race but not for PRs as you will cross 2 bridges twice each. Great post race festival with unlimited pasta and beer.