2016 Race Director’s Challenge

Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 5.02.32 PMThe New Year is upon us! Whether it’s a part of your New Year’s resolution or an annual tradition, if you’re looking to run the 2016 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon or 1/2 Marathon, we have a great opportunity for you! The NCHCM Race Director Challenge gives you a chance to win one of 20 free entries for our race – while doing good for our Columbus community!

Once again, we will hold a food drive throughout the month of January. Simply drop off non-perishable food items at any of the following Columbus-area running stores: Columbus Running Company (4 locations), Fleet Feet & Front Runner (3 locations), or Second Sole (2 locations). When you do, fill out an entry card for a chance to win one of 20 free entries into our 2016 Marathon or ½ Marathon. Only one entry per person will be accepted.

So, what is the “Challenge” part? We want to collect 2,016 items! All the goods we collect will be donated to the Mid-Ohio Food Bank. Help us achieve this goal and get one step closer to achieving yours, all while helping others!

Thankful for our Sister City

“On your mark, get set, go!” | “Auf die Plätze, fertig, los!”

For the past four years, sister-cities Columbus and Dresden Germany have formed a special relationship, sending five of their own city’s athletes to compete in the other’s Marathon and ½ Marathon. The experience has proven to be much more than a race across the pond. Participants have been able to take in a new culture, share their own and make international friendships that last long beyond the 5 night stay.

Hear what a few of our Columbus athlete and cultural ambassadors had to say about their time in Dresden.

Group before Start.JPG

Sue Frost

Dresden was stunningly different and also similar to what makes Columbus special – friendly people and pride in our home regions of central Ohio and Saxony. My hosts Katrin, a fellow half marathoner, and Jesto were the highlight of the trip. They enjoyed hosting Daniel Conner in 2014 and wanted to share their hospitality again. They met me at the train station.  Through the exchange, they are fans of buckeye candy and understand why O H is greeted with I O. With them, I saw the local region including historic towns like Meissen, regional wineries, baroque palaces, and the Saxon Alps. Their warmth and kindness were limitless. 

 

Joe Giessler

Staying with a local family in Dresden truly made the trip so much more memorable. Plus, I can honestly say I had one of the BEST meals of my life, goulash! I would go back just for that.

Maybe it’s just because I was on cloud nine from traveling abroad, but this was one of my favorite races. Unlike many marathons in the United States that start by 8 a.m., the Dresden Marathon did not start until 10:30 a.m. local time, which turned out to be perfect as the weather was a little chilly leading up to the race. The race begins through the historic downtown area with palaces and beautiful architecture towering over the course. You then head over a bridge and into an area known as “New Dresden.” Before heading back to the other side of the river, you go through a 1 kilometer tunnel that becomes cheering echoing contest that energizes all the athletes passing through.

 

Grace Stanislav

From the time my husband and I arrived in Dresden, we were shown such hospitality by the sister city coordinator, city officials and of course our host family. The city with its rich history, culture and art was impressive. The sight and story of the reconstructed Baroque Frauenkirche was quite moving. The thrill of running the international marathon along cobblestone streets and tree lined river paths was unforgettable.

The best part of the experience was the friendship we made with our Dresden hosts Claudia and Thomas. Thank you Dresden Sister City Inc. and the Columbus Marathon.  It was an honor to represent Columbus in this sister city exchange. It is our hope to return the warmth and hospitality shown to us to future Dresden visitors to Columbus.

 

Rodney Arcaro

The best part, though, and least expected were the 5 days I spent with my host family, Christine and Herbert.  Going into this I wasn’t sure what to expect, I knew my host was a runner so I figured that would at least provide an opportunity for some conversation.  However, I didn’t know that it would be possible to find a connection with complete strangers like I did.

We spent hours talking about their lives, my life, what is going on in Germany, what is happening in the States.  We walked and biked all over Dresden and surrounding areas, biking to places like Pillnitz and Meissen and of course sampling a few biers along the way.  We made several meals at their home and we laughed about many things. I was able to meet several of their friends as well.  My hosts were so kind to take time out of their daily routines to make me feel a part of their lives.

Interested in learning more about being a Columbus Ambassador or host? Send a note to Dorit Fratzscher at dresdensistercity@gmail.com  

 

 

Tip #26: Reflect on your amazing experience!

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all , or follow along on Facebook , Twitter , Pinterest and Instagram .


It doesn’t matter where or when you cross the finish line– you all are going the distance.  So, when you’re sitting in your bath of Epsom Salt and squeezing every last ounce of Biofreeze onto your weary muscles post-race, take in some of the marathon and 1/2 marathon-inspired quotes below.

Tip 26 - inspiration

“The thirst you feel in your throat and lungs will be gone minutes after the race is over. The pain in your legs within days, but the glory of your finish will last forever.” – Unknown

“It was being a runner that mattered, not how fast or how far I could run. The joy was in the act of running and in the journey, not in the destination.” John “The Penguin” Bingham

“Life is for participating, not for spectating.” – Kathrine Switzer, first woman to run the Boston Marathon as a numbered entry

“The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can’t dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon.” – Frank Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder

“Running has given me the courage to start, the determination to keep trying, and the childlike spirit to have fun along the way. Run often and run long, but never outrun your joy of running.” – Julie Isphording, Columbus Marathon winner

“I run because it’s so symbolic of life. You have to drive yourself to overcome the obstacles. You might feel that you can’t. But then you find your inner strength, and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.” Arthur Blank, owner of the Atlanta Falcons

“Mental will is a muscle that needs exercise, just like the muscles of the body.” Lynn Jennings, Olympic Bronze Medalist

“Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts.” – Steve Prefontaine

“If you feel bad at 10 miles, you’re in trouble. If you feel bad at 20 miles, you’re normal. If you don’t feel bad at 26 miles, you’re abnormal.” – Rob de Castella, winner 1983 world marathon championships

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” Haruki Murakami, author

Also remember that by participating in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon or 1/2 Marathon, you made a difference in the lives of children who get care from Nationwide Children’s Hospital, regardless of their ability to pay. We are honored and humbled that you chose to participate in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon. We look forward to seeing you next year on Sunday, October 16, 2016!

Tip #25: Before, during and after Race Day

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day.  Click here to read them all , or follow along on  Facebook Twitter Pinterest  and  Instagram.


The Board of Directors for the 2015 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon is active on several fronts. In addition to providing guidance and support for the race, our 11 board members have completed more than 300 marathons between them. So as you get ready for the race, here are their ideas on how you can make the most of tomorrow.

Tip 25 - what to do

The Night Before 

Lay it all out – Avoid race day anxiety and rushing around by laying out EVERYTHING you’ll need the night before.

Parking Plan – Know where you’re going and where you’re parking. Plan for it to take you at least double the time it usually would to get there. Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know about parking and road closures throughout the course.

Visualize – Visualize the start with a smile while everyone cheers you on, a smooth run with a calm breath and a steady pace, each neighborhood with huge crowds and funny signs, running through the pain as your training kicks in, the finish line with elation and what an awesome accomplishment! Through visualization our dreams come true.


Race Morning

Get there early! – We can’t say it enough – get there early! Avoid any unneeded race day anxiety by getting to the start line early. The Corrals open at 6 a.m. This will allow you some extra time should something unexpected arise (i.e. – traffic delays, long restroom lines, etc). Save your energy for the race and not a frantic run from the parking garage to the start line. 

No Firsts – You shouldn’t do anything for the first time – from the food you eat to what’s on your feet: breakfast, clothes, shoes, Gatorade and Clif Shot should already be tested.  

Protein – A little bit of protein is always a good thing the morning of the race, but again, practice this first before that day!

Stay Warm – Even with outdoor heaters in the corrals, you can still get chilled. Use an oversized trash bag to stay warm. Take a bag and cut a hole for your head at the bottom of the bag. Once the race begins, all you have to do is throw it away!


Race Day Experience 

Pace – Relax and don’t get too excited before and during the first few miles. Trust your training and stay true to your pace.

Take it all in – Once you arrive, take it all in, the sights, the sounds and the smells. This experience will never happen exactly this way ever again, so soak in every step. Entertainment and Patient Champions will be at every mile to keep you going. Remember, you’ve worked hard for this – enjoy it!


Post Race 

Celebrate – Congratulations! You have crossed the finish line and completed an amazing feat. Regardless of distance, pace and records, it is time to reward yourself and Celebration Village is the perfect place to do so. Reunite with friends and family, shake out our legs, visit the vendors, feast on food from local food trucks, enjoy live entertainment and remember to hit that PR Gong!

Recover – Check out Dr. Darrin Bright’s tips on how to recover appropriately here.

If you have any last minute questions, please leave a comment below or reach out to the marathon team on Facebook , Twitter , Pinterest or Instagram.

Tip #24: Choosing the Right Apparel with Kelsey from Second Sole

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Guest post by Kelsey Rosenburg, Second Sole Short North’s fashion guru


Well you’ve made it this far. The hard part is done; the miles are run and now its time to show us what you have been working so hard for.  The last thing you want is a minor apparel choice to ruin your race day.

Tip 24 - what to wear

The most important thing to remember is layering. With the often-unpredictable weather and the change in temperatures during the morning, wearing more than one layer is important. Make sure your layers are easily removable and disposable.

Lets start with the top layer. The morning is often brisk, however once you start moving and your adrenaline gets pumping you will heat up fast. For this top layer we recommend heading to the Goodwill Columbus booth at the expo. Grab a big comfy sweatshirt, or sweatpants to layer over your other gear. This is something you can easily throw off guilt free. This will keep you warm and you will be supporting a great non-profit.

Don’t forget to make the removal as easy as possible, cut a slit in the neck or around the leg holes help to make sure you don’t fumble while getting anything off in a hurry.

The next layer should be your race outfit. Always make sure to wear a wicking material for your shirt and shorts. Ladies we love a tank and arm sleeve combo, again allowing for easy removal of another layer. Half tights are also a great choice for your race day outfit; as opposed to shorts they are a little better for chaffing.  Guys a moisture wicking t-shirt or tank is also a great choice. Above all else make sure you have done a test run in your outfit before race day. This will ensure a great outcome for all your hard work.

Next, let’s move on to the most important part, footwear. We hope by now everyone has the shoes you will use for the race. No new shoes on race day! While it may be the same shoe you have run in for years, don’t play the odds and run in a new pair of shoes. Combine your favorite shoes with a great pair of non-cotton socks. This will decrease moisture buildup and keep you comfortable from start to finish.

Now that you’ve got your layers figured out and shoes ready, make sure that you have all of the nutritional products that you will need! Again making sure to do a test run of your nutrition for race morning can help alleviate stomach pains during the race.

Finally, if you get to the starting line and realize that you forgot something, do not panic! Come visit us at the Second Sole Race Day store next to the starting line. We will have with last-minute gloves, energy gels, body glide, hats, socks and anything else essential that you may have forgotten.

This is your race day that you have spent many long months, hours and miles preparing for — go out and enjoy it! We here at Second Sole want to wish each and every one of you the best of luck and want you to know that we will be there for your last minute needs, motivation and support!

Tip 23: Road Closings and Construction Updates

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.


Running or walking 13.1 or 26.2 miles is tough. That’s why the Nationwide Children’s -Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon team wants to help you overcome barriers, both on and off the course.

Tip 23 - road closures
Today’s tip involves road closings and construction updates. Columbus is a growing city, and with that growth comes some orange barrels. We also want to ensure the safety of our athletes, spectators and volunteers. Here are street closures near the Start/Finish line area for this year’s race.

  • Long St. will be closed between High St. to the East and Hocking St. to the West at 9:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 16.
  • Spring St. will be closed from West St. to the East, and Hocking St. to the West at 7:00 pm. Friday, Oct. 16.
  • Neil Ave. will be closed Race Weekend from Nationwide Blvd. on the North to the combined Start/Finish Line to the South.

On Sunday Oct. 18, 26.2 miles of the marathon course will be subject to rolling street closures, based upon the expected time the first and last athlete passes each mile of the course and a 2 p.m. course limit.  Spring Street, Long Street and Neil Ave. will open back up to traffic at 6 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 18.

To help you get around, here are three links to study.

If you have any questions, please use the comments section below. You’re also welcome to connect with the marathon team on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Tip 22: Experience The Expo

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.


One of the final steps to prepare for race day is your visit to the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon Expo. Today’s tip has all you need to know make the most of your expo experience.

Tip 22 - expo

The 2015 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon Health & Fitness Expo will take place on Friday, Oct. 16 from noon to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 17 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Battelle Grand Ballroom at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, 400 N. High Street, Columbus, OH 43215.

The Expo will feature more than 100 health- and fitness-related booths, Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon merchandise and race packet pickup.

NOTE: There will be NO Race Day packet pickup; all race packets must be picked up during Expo hours. If you cannot pick up your race packet, you can have someone pick it up for you — but that person must have a copy of your ID, as well as their own picture ID.

EXPO PARKING:

This link has the most up to date map of convention center parking.  Expo parking will be available for a $5 flat rate at the garages listed below:

  • East Surface Lot (#1) – located west of 4th St. on Nationwide Blvd.
  • South Garage (#2) – located on Nationwide Blvd. east of the Hyatt Regency
  • West Garage (#3) – located at the corner of Front St. and Vine St.

Due to construction, the North Garage (#4) will not be available.

DIRECTIONS TO THE EXPO

From I-70 from the East (Wheeling)

Take I-70 West to the Mound St. Exit

Travel to Fourth St., and then turn Right onto Fourth Street to Nationwide Boulevard

Turn Left onto Nationwide Boulevard

 

From I-71 from the North (Cleveland)

Take I-71 South

Travel West on I-670 “109-A”

Take Exit “4-B” to the Greater Columbus Convention Center

Or

Take I-71 South to the Spring Street Exit

Travel West on Spring Street to Fourth Street

Head North on Fourth Street to Nationwide Boulevard

Turn Left onto Nationwide Boulevard

 

From I-71 from the South (Cincinnati)

Take I-71 North to I-70 East

Travel on I-70 East to the Fourth Street Exit

Head North on Fourth Street to Nationwide Boulevard

Turn Left onto Nationwide Boulevard

 

From I-70 from the West (Indianapolis)

Take I-70 East to the Fourth Street Exit

Head North on Fourth Street to Nationwide Boulevard

Turn Left onto Nationwide Boulevard

 

If you have any last minute questions, please leave a comment below. You’re also welcome to connect with the race team on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Meet the 2015 Spirit Award Winners!

There is a story to share about each of the 19,000 runners and walkers participating in this year’s Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon and ½ Marathon.  Many have overcome physical and emotional challenges to be part of this year’s event.  While we unfortunately can’t share every story, we want to spotlight this year’s Spirit Award winners.  The Spirit Award is awarded annually to ten individuals who demonstrate perseverance and dedication.  During the weeks leading up to this year’s Marathon and ½ Marathon, we will be sharing their stories of inspiration and spirit.  Congratulations to all of this year’s honorees!


 Sonya team danny

Sonya Rae Evans, West Union, OH

In the spring of 2012, Sonya started having what she thought were minor health issues, being treated for sinus and allergy issues. When antibiotics did not help (numerous times) and the symptoms started interfering with her breathing, she was referred to a pulmonologist.  She was told that it was not lung related and that she “looked too healthy” to have a lung disorder. Although she still felt something was wrong (due to her increased shortness of breath), she continued on with her daily life and exercise regimen of Zumba, Yoga, and, of course, running.  She even competed in the distance run in Charleston, WV on September 1, 2012—a complicated 15 mile run.

In January 2013, on her 43rd birthday, Sonya learned she had stage 3, non-small cell lung cancer.  Sixteen months after completing her radiation and chemotherapy treatments, Sonya ran in the 2014 Flying Pig Half Marathon in Cincinnati.  Sonya’s tumor has stopped growing but it is inoperable.  She attributes her determination and strength to God and God’s healing powers.  According to her nomination, “Sonya sees the world with such gratitude and grace and is an inspiration to all who know her.”


Rachel

Rachel Schade, Delaware, OH

Rachel is participating in her first half marathon shortly over a year after enduring tragic loss. Rachel was in her mid-20s with an English degree and a part-time job and was living with a roommate when her parents died in an accident. As the oldest of three children in her family, Rachel assumed responsibility for her youngest sibling who was just beginning his senior year of high school. Rachel selflessly knew what she had to do- she got a full-time job at a daycare to give herself and her brother benefits. Additionally, she and her roommate moved into a bigger apartment so he could have his own room and homeschooled him through his senior year.  This fall, her brother started college. While Rachel had a good support group of close friends as well as family in other states, she has persevered and through it all is determined to run her first half marathon on Oct. 18.

Tip 21: Proper Packet Pickup

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.


To ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable race experience, the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Marathon & ½ Marathon created specific rules for packet pickup. We don’t want all your hard work and preparation to be for not; so please take a moment to understand these important rules.

Tip 21 - packet pickup

Pickup Overview:

Pick up your 2015 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon participant bib, T-shirt, bib tag timing device, runner “goodie” bag and clear, gear check bag at the Health & Fitness Expo in the Battelle Grand Ballroom of the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

Expo hours are Friday, Oct. 16, from Noon to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 17, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Make sure you have your photo ID.  NO ID, NO NUMBER.  NO EXCEPTIONS.

(Note: Athletes will receive the race t-shirt corresponding to the event in which they are entered, i.e., someone registered for the full marathon will receive a full marathon t-shirt, even if they signed up for the full marathon but only intend to complete the ½ Marathon. Again, there are no exceptions.)

What If Friends or Family Want To Pick Up Your Number For You?

Make sure they have a copy of YOUR photo ID, as well as their OWN picture ID. They should first check in at the booth located just outside of the expo hall, “Picking Up For Others? Start Here,” for an approval stamp.

While friends or family members are permitted to pick up race numbers for registered participants, they are NOT permitted to run or walk the race using another person’s number.

To help them get through the “Picking Up For Others? Start Here” line faster, click here, print this form, fill it out ahead of time and give to the person picking up your number. They must still visit the “Picking Up For Others? Start Here” table, but only for the ID check and an approval stamp!

Is there Race Day Packet Pickup?

No.

Can Registration Packets Be Mailed In Advance?

No 

Current registrants can click here to double-check your registration.  Please ask any questions in the comment section below. You’re also welcome to connect with the marathon team on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Tip 20: Marathon Registration To Be Offered Race Weekend

As we put the final preparations in place for this year’s race, we’re sharing “26 Tips for 26.2 Miles” to make sure you’re ready to go on race day. Click here to read them all, or follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.


Tip 20 - full registration

We are making arrangements to have race weekend registration available for the FULL Marathon only at our Health & Fitness Expo. Of course, if we sell out first this deal is off the table. Why risk it? Sign up now while you still can here. If you must wait until Race weekend, Expo hours are Friday, Oct. 16, from Noon to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 17, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.