Our Best Posts of 2016
As the year comes to a close, we spent time digging through our analytics to see which of our roughly 150 posts were the most popular in 2016. You may have missed some of them, so here’s an opportunity to catch up, or refresh your mind on some of our great content in the past year!
All of our monthly race guide calendars were incredibly popular in 2016. If they were one single post, they would easily be the most read thing on the site. Our readers use them to find new races, or confirm dates for ones they want to run again. We try to update the calendar every few months with the latest races in and around Minnesota; bookmark it and come back often! If you’re a race director, or someone who wants to get the word out about your event, let us know. We have some free, and paid, opportunities for spreading the word.
We created a lot of new content this year about various forms of strength training. Many readers often ask how they should supplement their running with strength training. Adding a few strength training sessions into your weekly routine can help to increase your overall strength, performance, and muscular endurance, while potentially reducing body fat and lowering risk of injury. Incorporate this full body dumbbell workout into your routine at least twice per week and start reaping the benefits of regular strength training!
We’re not trying to rub salt in the wound, but it was a massive deal when the Minneapolis Marathon was canceled. We heard from a lot of runners who spent months training for this race, but unfortunately it was canceled last minute because race organizers were unable to “…establish a new marathon and half marathon course by June 5.” This was crazy for so many reasons, but we put together a short list of some viable alternatives. Who knows, maybe you might actually want to train for and run one of these small town races in 2017?
Jenna and I spent the better part of 18 months creating this helpful meal planning guide for runners. This guide came out of a very real need: to easily make quality, home cooked meals while we train for big races. As you know, food is just as important as the miles you run every day. Poor food choices can lead to poor food habits. Poor food habits can lead to poor performance, both in the workplace and out on a run. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Last spring, we Introduced ‘A Runner’s Week of Good Eats!‘ It’s a meal planning guide to help runners spend less time in the kitchen and more time working towards that PR. Learn more about how this guide will easily help you eat healthy, delicious meals.
2016 marked the 35th anniversary of the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, the origins of which can be traced back to 1963. Back then, 5 runners registered for the first “Land of Lakes Marathon.” We came up with 35 different reasons why TCM is a great marathon. Registration isn’t open until February, but if you’re thinking about a fall marathon, we highly recommend it!
It might be the last thing on your mind right now, but in 2016, we created our first ever summer gear guide. We asked some of our writers, as well as a few members of Team USA MN to give us their favorite hats, tops, shorts, water bottles, and other essential items to help us get the most out of summer running. Our list included the gear that we love, use, and trust for our summer workouts. It was by no means exhaustive, but sometimes it’s helpful to get a few ideas. Alternately, here is our winter gear guide, too!
Dale Kovar ran his first marathon in 2016 at age 59. Just a few years ago, he was out of shape and had trouble bending down to tie his shoes. He started running a few years ago, slowly ramping us his distance, until he successfully finished the 2016 Twin Cities Marathon in 5:08! He is an inspiration to runners of all ages, and reminds us of the true reward of running: “the joy [of running] is not about the moment of crossing the finish line… it is the acknowledgement of everything you did to get there.” Keep reading to learn more about his inspirational story.
The U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials took place in July of 2016! It was the high holiday of the running world in preparation for the Rio Olympics. Krysta was in Eugene, Oregon for the duration (spectating, not competing), and I showed up to catch the women’s Steeplechase final and the men’s 5K final. It was VERY exciting! We chatted with 8 athletes who were competing, all who have close connections to Minnesota. We also shared a results post to find out how they did!
If you’re training for Grandma’s Marathon, you’re doing the bulk of your miles in late winter and early spring – months when the weather is often unpredictable. To prepare for a late June race, you need to get your body ready to handle the potential of heat and humidity. Evan has a thought on this, if a little strange on first impression: you should train for Grandma’s like it’s a warm weather marathon! Keep reading for tips on general warm weather race preparation.
We had the opportunity to work with the good people at Final Stretch and the Mankato Marathon. We heard from many runners about the greatness of this relatively new little marathon. It was started by a group of local runners and has been growing in popularity ever since. The Mankato Marathon claims to be “the Midwest’s boldest race, showcasing a dynamic course and determined runners!” If you’re looking for a different fall marathon, keep reading to learn more about this weekend of events for the whole family!