The world’s fastest 5K is coming back to Carlsbad this March to celebrate its 30th anniversary. Are you ready?
Part of the Medifast Healthy Strides Race and Fitness Series, this race is still the site of the world’s fastest records for men and women, but don’t let that keep you away. The Healthy Strides series is focused on encouraging more regular exercise in your future rather than on how fast you can finish the race.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the Health and Fitness Expo, which will be open throughout the race weekend (7am-1pm) on March 28 and 29. Fitness products and education will be offered by a variety of sponsors ranging from sports equipment to exercise gear, help in achieving your weight loss goals, or on improving your diet.
Since staying healthy is a family affair, the events begin Saturday with the Junior Carlsbad races. Intended for runners 12 years old and younger, these races have kid-friendly awards to encourage healthy habits to last a lifetime. Moms and Dads can run with their babies in the Diaper Dash (children 2 and under) or the Toddler Trot for children up to age 3. Preschoolers are invited to run on a quarter mile course, with a half-mile course and one-mile course available for older children.
Sunday’s events include the 5K and the all day 20K for adults. No matter what your skill level or age, there is a course that can work for you. Walk or run the People’s Course without worries that the professional runners will soon be passing you by.
Whether running the 5K or the 20K, the route starts at Grand and Harding, proceeds down Grand to Carlsbad Blvd., and heads south to Tamarack before heading back up Carlsbad to Ocean Drive. From there, runners will head back south to Carlsbad Village Drive and the finish line.
Runners in the all-day 20K run the same route as the 5K, but will run the route several times through the day. These runners are given access to the special All Day 20K lounge and refreshments area. Categories for the adult races include Masters Men (40 & over), Masters Women (40 & over), Men and Women (30-39), and Men and Women (29 & under).
A special Elite Course has been added to the program for invited competitive runners from around the world. Runners in either the People’s category or in the Elite Runners category will all be eligible to take part in the after-race party at the finish line.
Don’t worry if you don’t feel you’re quite ready to run. Participation in the race is a great way to hit the reset button on your New Year’s resolutions, whether they are to achieve a certain level of weight loss, simply to get fit, or to continue your involvement in marathons. Once you’ve committed to run the race, you’ll be more motivated to stick to your diet and include exercise in your daily routine.
You could even connect with other runners through Team in Training to get more expert counseling, workout buddies, and menu tips. There are also numerous training tips offered through the event website.
The race has gained international interest, drawing runners and their families from around the world. As a result, it is a common meeting place for family reunions and friendly meet-ups. Use the event race map to determine appropriate places to park and be sure to coordinate with your group before the races begin as to where, specifically, everyone should go to find each other. Many groups find it helpful to dress in similar colors or custom designed shirts, but having a pre-determined meeting place can also help reduce the confusion.
Proceeds from the race support the Carlsbad Educational Foundation which finances and conducts innovative, quality educational programs for students within the Carlsbad Unified School District. Proceeds also support Team Liam, which raises funds for children’s neurosurgery.