Races are different. When you run a race (marathon, half marathon, GOOD 10Ks/5Ks), as soon as you cross the finish line you receive a medal. Satisfaction. No waiting for results, no drug testing (thank god). Just a friendly, sometimes rubber gloved, volunteer saying “congrats finisher, here is your medal. Go get a free yogurt”. Better words haven’t been spoken.
As such, each year the “magazine” Marathon & Beyond (which reads more like a Reader’s Digest for runners) puts together their top 25 marathon medals. Below are the ones that make the list. I’ve called out the top 10 specifically (because I am lazy) and the others that I’ve ran. If you are interested in what the remainder look like, head over to 26.2 medals. I’ve killed MANY hours pouring over their pages of runner submitted race medals.
Send me pictures of YOUR favorite race medals. I’d love to do a post showing off everyone’s race bling (I’ll include my own)!
Also, did you run any of these races in 2010? Agree / disagree with the Marathon and Beyond folks on what should have been included??
#1 Fort Lauderdale A1A Marathon
This medal is a clam shell that opened to reveal two sides of artwork.
#2 Surf City USA Marathon
The Surf City race is always a top 25, the medal is huge coming in at nearly 6" (that's what she said)
#3 Route 66 Marathon
Seriously, whom ever decided to make a medal out of some Sprewell DUBs is a good man/woman
#4 Running for the Bay Marathon
The editors felt that the Running for the Bay medal, with it's glass insert was worth the top 10
#5 Rock and Roll Mardi Gras Marathon
Mardi Gras! One of my faves, the beads instead of ribbon and sparkles make this one awesome.
Warning though, after drinking MGD64 and running a PR, this might be what happens:
#6 Detroit Marathon
Love all of the classic Detroit references in their medal. Cars, records..big buildings?
#7 Quebec City Marathon
The Quebec City marathon's medal actually had light up LEDs (the lights towards the bottom). This is VERY cool - not sure why this one wasn't any higher.
#8 St George Marathon
St George always has fast times (1000s of feet of elevation drop) and very cool medals. Last year they had hand carved stone.
#9 Hartford Marathon
Looks like something that would have came out of Harry Potter
#10 First Light Marathon
......and now the remaining 25. I've called out some notables!
#11 Flying Pig Marathon
#12 Air Force Marathon
#13 Ottawa Marathon
#14 North Olympic Discovery Marathon
#15 Napa Valley Marathon
#16 Wineglass Marathon
An actual glass medal! I think the over/under on me breaking it would be 30 minutes.
#17 Portland Marathon
#18 Little Rock Marathon
#19 Newport Marathon
#20 Mother Road Marathon
#21 Lost Dutchman Marathon
While not particularly noteworthy when I ran the race in 2011, the editors still felt that this Arizona race deserved mention.
#22 Mississippi Blues Marathon
#23 Colorado Marathon
#24 Rock and Roll San Diego Marathon
I liked the San Diego medal when I ran it in 2010. The runner dude was a bit cheesy for my style, but the sparkles in the ocean mostly made up for it.
#25 Tupelo Marathon