MCM 50K, here I come! Not sure what I’m referring to? Read on!
I left off last week telling you about signing up for my first 50K. I’m still over the moon excited about registering for the MCM 50K and I want to tell you a bit more about it.
MCM 50K, Here I Come!
The 50K seed is planted…
Some backstory: years ago, my friend Sara told me I would run an ultra. There was no way in hell. I was barely trudging along through my first cycle of marathon training. I couldn’t imagine running 26.2 miles let alone 31.
But, of course, the seed had been planted. Since I’m a stronger road runner, I had little interest in running a trail 50K. Road 50Ks are hard to come by but luckily, we had a great one locally. After a couple years of hemming and hawing, I finally made it a goal to run the road 50K in 2019.
Then things got fishy with that race. As the months passed and the race dates hadn’t been posted (while all the other races by the same timing company had), I knew something was up. Several emails later, I was finally told they weren’t going to have the race this year. I was told they were replacing it with another 50K that would be really fun.
Admittedly, I was intrigued for a minute. But then I realized “fun” meant it was a trail 50K. My heart sank. What was I going to do? First world problems, but my dreams were shattered.
Could I do a trail 50K? Probably. Did I want to? Not really. My body gets incredibly banged up on trails. I’m signed up for a 16-mile leg of Burning River this year and that will be the farthest I’ve run on trails ever. To sign up for a trail 50K probably wouldn’t be the wisest decision.
I was sad.
The Marine Corps Marathon announced there was going to be an MCM 50K in 2019!!!
YES! The Marine Corps Marathon announced there would be a 50K!
I had so many questions… I deferred my entry from 2018 — could I use it? If I couldn’t, could I still claim it and transfer it to a friend? Was there a time cutoff? Would it sell out? Was it a lottery or a first-come basis?
I must have tweeted 20 questions to the good folks over at MCM. Who, as always, were incredibly helpful and amazing.
Answers came quickly:
- No, I couldn’t use my deferred entry but I could transfer it later.
- There is a time cutoff for 50K runners. We need to maintain a 12:30 pace.
- There would be a very limited field. When the 50K was announced, it was capped at 500 runners. From what I gather, the good people at MCM realized the popularity of the 50K option and thankfully rerouted the course and changed the field to 1,700 runners instead.
- It was not a lottery and if you wanted a coveted spot among the 1,699 runners, you needed quick fingers to register on a first-come basis!
Registration Day Arrives
Okay so let’s fast forward… I conferred with a few friends I knew would also be interested. Registration would open on February 27th with a limited field so we were up against a small window of opportunity.
When February 27th arrived, I wore my lucky MCM 2016 shorts to the gym and enjoyed a hard (and somewhat anxiety-ridden) workout. I got home, showered, and changed into my MCM 2017 half zip. Finally, registration was about to open. Armed with cell phones, multiple laptops, and iPads with credit cards waiting, my friends and I anxiously clicked “register” at the stroke of noon. Within minutes we were all signed up and ready to tackle the inaugural Marine Corps Marathon 50K.
I was so happy when my registration went through that I almost cried! That never happens to me. I think maybe it happened the first time I got into the MCM lottery. What is it about this race?!
So yeah. I did a thing. And I’m super ecstatic!
There hasn’t been one moment that I’ve questioned my choice about signing up for this race. I’ve always adhered to the philosophy that everything happens for a reason. There’s a reason the road 50K I was eyeing isn’t going on in 2019: the Marine Corps Marathon announced a 50K. There’s a reason I deferred my entry from 2018: to transfer it to my friend, Kim, who has been wanting to run this race for years. And there’s definitely a reason I’m not questioning any of it: because it will be incredible!
Training will be an adventure but I don’t plan on veering too far off a traditional marathon training schedule. With the exception of a few more miles here and there, since it’s not a trail race, I don’t see it being all that different. One thing is for sure: I can’t wait to run in the warm sunshine again this summer and celebrate by running through beautiful Washington, D.C.!
Now you know the excitement behind my decision to register for MCM 50K. It’s going to be amazing and I can’t wait! MCM 50K, here I come!!!
Is there a race you continually go back to time and again?
Which one and what makes it so special to you?