I am in love with this race and it is part of the Run Like a Diva race series. They have a 5K Girls' Race and a 1/2 Marathon women only race. I have seen a couple of men run the 1/2 marathon but they are not allowed to place officially. The race is well organized and I love the all-female aspect to the run....even though I never thought I would.
The run takes you through Honolulu starting and ending at Ala Moana Park and is close to an area of town I used to live. I must say, there are some extremely scenic points that even took my breath away, which says a lot.
There are some elevation changes and be prepared for heat and humidity and stay hydrated. The city of Honolulu is definitely hotter than the runs I am accustomed to on Maui. However, for some of you braving the 100's in your runs, you are probably rolling over laughing at what this Maui Mommy is considering hot.
I ran the inaugural race in 2011 and returned in 2012 to tackle it again. I made a huge improvement in performance and am ecstatic. I would love, love, love to return to run again in 2013 but airfare and turning the event into a family vacation may take it out of my financial reach. But I will be returning again one year!
If you are on O'ahu sometime around April be sure to check this race out. Sorry, at the time I am writing this the 2013 date has not been announced but it has been in early April the past two years.
Once again, I am in awe on how well this race is organized and managed. My personal favorite is all the volunteers and tape on the route marking obstacles and pointing you in the right direction. Oh yeah, don't forget the amazing finisher medals along with a boa at mile 12 and sparkling cider at the end! It also includes awards for age groups.
If you are looking for a lush vacation spot and a half marathon or marathon why not head over to Kaua'i, The Garden Island, in September?
The course is beautiful and hilly and I don't know from experience yet but I hear the marathon is hillier than the half marathon. There is wonderful community support for this race and I still get warm, fuzzy thoughts when I think of all the supporters along the way providing encouragement.
I ran the half marathon in 2011 just two weeks before my first marathon. It was a very spiritual run for me and I completely connected to my love of running. I look forward to returning sometime soon, perhaps in 2013 or 2014, to run the marathon and bring my family along.
The cost of registration is higher but if you plan ahead you get a good deal. And they have kama'aina rates for those of you, like me, that live in Hawai'i. But I can't complain about the cost since the race was well organized and I enjoyed the time being able to chat with some really cool people at the expo. The goodie bag was awesome and I received a dry-tech race shirt.
You will get an awesome finisher's medal and if you are speedy, this may be your lucky place and you could win some $$$ with the speed challenges they have. In addition, there are age group awards and the after party is lovely! It truly is one I enjoyed hanging out at but perhaps I was more inclined because I went solo in 2011.
You may also have the opportunity to meet some inspiring people in the running community, like Dean Karnazes.
Maui Half or Full Marathon - Maui
The Maui Marathon is another September race, typically around the 3rd Sunday, and you can choose from the Front Street Mile, a 5K, the half marathon, or the marathon. You can also do a Warrior's Challenge of races.
I ran the half marathon in 2010 and the marathon in 2011 . I look forward to returning in September to run the marathon again and aim to set a new PR.
Just like the Kaua'i Marathon, registration fees are a bit higher but if you plan early and register early, your pocketbook is happier! There is the opportunity to add on a lot to your experience with Carb Loading parties, etc. but I have never ventured into this. In all reality, I just enjoyed browsing the expo and spending time with my family before and post race. In addition, I have never truly hung out post race to experience their after party.
This race is entering its 42nd year and knows what it is doing. The half marathon is a pretty flat out-and-back and the marathon starts hilly and ends flatter. It can be a hot race especially towards the end when you are running down Front Street. But as long as you are prepared and stay hydrated, you should do fine.
This race is one I plan to return to in future years and the only reason I may skip it is if I am going to run somewhere else....such as that Kaua'i Marathon.
Disclaimer: Please note, I am not a certified trainer or trained medical professional. These race reviews represent my own opinion and any information I give on cost or course is subject to change at the race director's discretion. Please make sure you are well trained and ready to run a race before entering. Running can be dangerous and I always strongly advise annual physicals and complete honesty with your physician in how you are training in terms of distance and intensity.