One of the great things about active communities on cMEcompete is that members of every community find races that they can participate in that they might not have known about previously. When member Monica Love joined the community, she began participating in the WINOT Run Club then found race event listings from other states as well as locally-operated. Discovering races was just the beginning. One of the events she chose to participate in was also her first half marathon, the Scenic City Half Marathon in Chattanooga, TN, which took place on February 22, 2014.

Why did she choose this out-of-state race for her first long distance event? “I love Chattanooga – it’s a beautiful city and I was able to run it with my friend, Sherry! The only thing I would change was that there was no food handed out after the race – just water. A banana would have been much appreciated. But overall, it was great for my first half,” shared Monica. A first impression with a race is always a lasting one and there is always a reason why a runner chooses a race whether it’s cost, location, race distance, race rewards or charitable cause.

For Monica, all these elements came into play when choosing the Scenic City Half: “The race was very affordable and some of the proceeds went to a charity you could pick from a list.  For the price, runners received a shirt, hat, and medal. The hotel was also reasonable after applying the discount code from the website, and it was also nice that I could pick up my bib at the same location. After driving in from Atlanta and finding my hotel, I did not want to have to travel to another location to pick up my bib.” Offering conveniences to encourage out of town runners is a big bonus. It drives participation numbers up not only for the race but also for the city as a tourist destination!

Stay tuned for more information on this race and a first-time half marathoner’s experience!