world marathon majors… why not?


Photo from
Tokyo. Boston. London. Berlin. Chicago. New York.

A few months ago, I ran into the website, and noticed something. I had done Boston, was about to do NYC, and was definitely planning to do Chicago the following year, so then I thought, why not do the other three? The other three races are London, Berlin, and Tokyo. Now, it was just a fun idea at first, until I thought about it some more. Why can’t I do the other three races? I looked up the timing: Tokyo is in February, London is in April, and Berlin is in September. Next, I tried considering which would be reasonable with my work schedule. April was a no go, next September wouldn’t be ideal if I was truly planning to do Chicago in the fall, but Tokyo in February… that one seemed to work. I went to the website on October 30 and knew there was no way they were accepting applications, but then I thought about a charity spot. How much would one have to raise for the Tokyo Marathon? Crazy I know, but when I get an idea in my head, I can’t help but play it all out until it’s fully exhausted. Then I saw this:


Well… that was going to be hard, it was mid-afternoon on October 30, which meant Japan was definitely sleeping (14 hours ahead?) and of course it wasn’t an online application, you had to email the organization to get it. Consequently, I sent a series of emails, but couldn’t manage to stay up when I finally received the application at 1:44 AM on October 31st. I thought about submitting it late anyway when I woke up that morning, but the fundraising aspect wasn’t really there — it was just a straight ¥100,000 donation (~$1,000 US), which is nothing compared to some marathon fundraising requirements here, but I just wasn’t that willing to commit. I moved on.

Until I didn’t.

I found another nifty website in my “OMG what am I going to do after the NYC Marathon” phase called This one was definitely more trouble than the first link I found because it makes almost any marathon, around the world across all seven continents, reachable. Want an excuse to travel? Run a marathon. Duh. Because clearly you can’t just visit another city / state / country without running a race. (Yes, I know something isn’t quite working in my brain anymore – that, hey, do you think you could just go somewhere to relax for once? thought never really crossed my mind.) Anyway, I noticed they also had the Tokyo Marathon but of course at this point it was sold out and they were starting to form a waitlist. I don’t know why I like leaving things up to fate, I just do, so I decided to apply for the wait list. And then I got an email yesterday saying there was an opening. So am I going to do it? Of course! I could always use an excuse to travel :)

Where is the most coolest place you’ve traveled to for a race? Do you often find yourself planning vacations around runs/races?


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