While our sweet little Charlotte has nothing on places like Chi-beria or Seattle (Rain City turned Snow Town), this winter was still a rough one. Although I love the great outdoors and getting my daily dose of vitamin D, I can NOT deal with the chapped lips, wind-burnt cheeks, and brutal shoulder tension that comes with shivering like a chihuahua all day any longer. The sight of blossoms popping around town has me on a uncrushable high right now. Until that glorious official first day of spring on the 20th of March, you can find me in sweatpants clinging to something warm and tasty to sip on- one good thing to come from a long winter is my bomb tea collection. I can’t help myself, I have roughly 3-5 times more tea varieties than is normal/appropriate for someone under the age of 72. Not to brag.

Race season is gearing up too- and just in time! There is already swimwear in stores and, personally, I feel victimized by these teeny bikinis staring me down in my parka buying my 8th- no joke- box of Girl Scout cookies. Not to fear, Scoop ladies, there’s plenty of time and opportunity to give your fitness routine a jolt, enjoy a common goal with friends, and support excellent causes while prepping for sunnier times.

Our Spring Race Round Up has something for everyone from the novice just looking to have fun to serious runners conditioning themselves for more events later in the year. An added bonus is that most post-race finish lines are also a great way to meet new people that share an interest with you like- surprise- fitness.

A Few Words on Pre Race Checklists

We’ve put our pre-race prep suggestions into an easy checklist format so other checklist loyals like me can go nuts with color-coded Sharpies as you mark items off with what some might say is “excessive” enthusiasm. Seriously though, what satisfaction is greater than slapping a big, juicy checkmark next to a task in your to-do list? A checklist for what to do on a boring Saturday (gym, shower, groceries, nap, dinner, Netflix, bed… this is an actual list I found in my wallet… whyyy?) might be a little unnecessary and, let’s face it, neurotic. But preparing for an upcoming race using checklists is something I’ve done for a few years, and it’s helped in so many ways for pre-race prep.

We’ve broken your pre-race to-dos down into one week out, one day out, and day of categories, so get your Sharpies poised to strike and chase away some pre-race jitters by preparing for race day like a pro, no matter your experience level. Check it out here.

And Now, Our Spring Race Round Up

Once you’ve prepared yourself, it’s off to the races with some of the best area events for spring listed below. Be sure to tag @scoopcharlotte in your victorious finish line photos!

March 9, 2019

BB&T Corporate Cup: The BB&T Corporate Cup with the YMCA of Greater Charlotte is in it’s 40th year! This race has staying power largely due to the scenic, challenging route the half-marathoners get to enjoy. There is also a 5k option and the chance to run the half as a relay team. Prices go up March 5th before the March 9th big event.

March 9, 2019

RunJenRun 5k: The 7th annual RunJenRun 5k will take place at the beautiful Symphony Park in SouthPark on March 9th. All proceeds will benefit the GoJenGo Foundation, a community of caring people brought together for the common purpose of assisting neighbors in their fight against breast cancer.

March 10, 2019

Shamrock Shuffle 5k: Supporting Shamrock Elementary’ s students, there is also a kids’ run for this event.

April 5, 2019

Freemorewest 5k on the Greenway: Get movin’ for Right Moves for Youth on the evening of April 6th with a jaunt through the FreeMoreWest neighborhood on the greenway. A post-race beer and sandwich (get the chicken torta) at FMW neighbors’ fav, Rhino Market, is a must. I can’t think of a better excuse to go out in your cutest leggings and tennis shoes for a fun, casual night out.

April 6, 2019

Know Your Craft 5k: I love my lazy weekend mornings- and the occasional lazy weekday mornings hiding from my “real job”, but I digress- and the Know Your Craft 5k has an 11am start time. I don’t know who I need hug for this but whoever you are, you’re the real MVP. Benefitting Urban Ministry, this event will be followed a killer post-race party at Triple C.

April 26-28, 2019

Tuck Fest: A multi-day, multi-race event at The Whitewater Center, there are options for a full marathon, half, quarter, and 5k. April 26-28 will be an awesome weekend at the USNWC if you’re racing, cheering your favorite runner on, or relaxing with a beer near the rapids.

April 27, 2019

Girls on the Run South Region 5k: This is the grand finale for our area Girls on the Run groups to show off what they’ve been learning and practicing through the GOTR program. You can run solo or volunteer to be a running buddy for one of the GOTR girls. Don’t miss this one April 27th.

May 11, 2019

CPCC Skyline Run: Shining the spotlight on student mothers at CPCC, this race will raise money for scholarships to benefit them. There is a 5K Run, Walk for Health, 1-mile Family Fun Run, and a 5K Baby Jogger Championship to choose from. Join in the fun May 11th.

June 1, 2019

NoDa 5k: Another evening run, and my favorite of the bunch. Benefitting Girls on the Run and Let Me Run for elementary and middle school children learning valuable lessons on perseverance and goal setting, you can celebrate your victory at the finish with a cold “recovery” beer- I promise, it’s a thing. Lace up June 1st at 6pm.

June 2, 2019

Ramblin’ Rose Triathlon: A 200 yard swim, 8 mile bike, and a 2 mile run in the name of women’s empowerment- I can get behind that! Signup for this event taking place June 2nd in and around the Harris YMCA in South Charlotte.

Even if You Don’t Race, Still Run

If sanctioned events aren’t your thing, don’t sleep on local weekly running clubs. Large, organized runs with medals, free shirts, and more are fun, but these smaller-scale events are more accessible, casual, and offer a great way to meet people that might like to pound pavement too. Check out some of these:

  • Lenny Boy Brewing Co. Run Club every Sunday at 11am
  • Charlotte Running Company Run Club Monday at 6:30pm
  • Heist Brewery Run Club Monday at 6:30pm
  • Carolina Beer Temple Run Club Tuesday at 6:45pmCatawba Brewing Run Club Tuesday at 6:30pm (after 3/19)
  • Wooden Robot Brewery Tuesday at 6:30pm
  • Bold Missy Brewery Run Club Tuesday at 6:30pm
  • Legal Remedy Brewing Run Club Tuesday at 6:30pm
  • Sycamore Brewing Run Club Wednesday at 6:30pm
  • Amor Artis Brewing Run Club Wednesday at 6:30pm
  • NoDa Brewing Company Run Club Wednesday at 6:30pm
  • Ballantyne Running Club at GrowlerUSA Thursday, 6:15pm
  • Cabarrus Brewery Run Club Thursday at 6:30pm
  • Primal Brewery Run Club Thursday at 6:30pm
  • Legion Brewing Legendary Runners Thursday at 6:30pm
  • Divine Barrel Brewing Run Club Thursday at 6:30pm
  • Triple C Run Club Thursday at 6:30pm
  • Sycamore Brewing Run Club Saturday at 12pm

Look our for our next race roundup for our favorite Summer races including one shutting down the 277 loop around Uptown for the Around the Crown 10k plus old favorites like the OrthoCarolina Classic, The USNWC’s River Jam Run series, the NoDa 5k with its evening start, and more!