CARA Awards Progress

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that part of the reason I have been running so many races this year is because I am shooting for a Chicago Area Runners Association (CARA) Participation Award. This award is a way to honor runners who may not actually win races (like me!) but who have participated in ten or more CARA Runners’ Choice Circuit or CARA Certified Races.

I’ve been tracking my CARA races this year in my fancy race tracker Google Doc, as well as on My Race List on my blog. To date, I have run seven CARA races, and will be running my 8th tonight with Run for Gus. The Chicago Half Marathon, which I am running for Open Books, is also CARA Certified, so I was thinking I only needed one more to make ten.

However, I just checked out CARA’s updated race list, and found out that the Chicago 10K recently got CARA certified. I’m already registered for that one, too, so now I am officially on track to meet my goal of 10! Hooray!

In other exciting news, CARA also has a long distance award, which you can earn by completing five races from their “Long Distance Series” (see below), including one at the marathon distance; or five races from that list and one marathon or longer race of your choice.

04/28/2012 FirstMerit Bank Lakefront 10 Mile Chicago*
05/06/2012 First Midwest Bank Southwest Half Marathon Palos Heights
05/12/2012 Quarryman 10 Mile Lemont
05/20/2012 Rockford Marathon Rockford
05/26/2012 Fleet Feet Sports Soldier Field 10 Mile Chicago*
05/26/2012 Elgin Valley Fox Trot 10 Mile Elgin
06/02/2012 Sunburst Marathon & Half Marathon South Bend IN
07/21/2012 Waterfall Glen Xtreme 10 Miler Darien
07/22/2012 XSport Rock n Roll Chicago Half Marathon Chicago*
09/03/2012 Oak Brook Half Marathon Oak Brook
09/09/2012 Chicago Half Marathon Chicago*
09/23/2012 Fort2Base Races 10 Nautical Miles Highland Park
10/07/2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon Chicago
10/21/2012 Wisconsin Dells Marathon & Half Wisconsin Dells WI

Because of the fact that I am not planning on running another marathon anytime soon, the only way I could earn this award was to use my Disney Marathon, plus 5 other CARA 10-milers or half marathons. And unfortunately, the way the schedule worked out, the most I’d be able to do is four.

That is, until they also added the Wisconsin Dells Half and the Fort2Base to the list. If I run either of those races, I can also earn the long distance award. I really wasn’t planning on doing either of them, but now I am tempted. Plus, I talked to a Fort2Base rep at my last running club night and it sounded kind of cool. And I know several ChicagoRunningBloggers are running it.

This, my friends, is how I get sucked into doing things. It’s not because I love running. Or because it keeps me healthy. It’s all about bonus medals (see the Rock ‘n’ Mud, Disney Coast-to-Coast, and Windy City Challenge), CARA awards, and other stupid incentives.

Do bunny ears and sunglasses count as “stupid incentives”?

I think I have a problem.

What motivates you to sign up for more races? 

Are you running the Wisconsin Dells Half or the Fort2Base? Should I do it?


4 thoughts on “CARA Awards Progress

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