The Discover Bank Delaware Marathon is this Sunday, and food is on my mind! Most of my marathon preparation involves not so much running but rather the buying and packing of food. I finally got a Pop Tart container so my Pop Tarts won’t get smashed in transit – I’m a little too excited to see if it works. I also got a bunch of other new-ish snacks to take with me. Since it’s a short visit and Wilmington is only a 2-hour train ride away, most of my luggage will be food for before and after the race. I can even pack liquids!
The Delaware Marathon started 13 years ago because Delaware didn’t have a marathon. (There were a few marathons before 1998, but nothing between 1998 and 2004.) Now there are several marathons in the second smallest state, but it goes to show how much running has changed in the last 10 years, and how it might change in the future.
This year there are 459 full marathoners registered, 1101 halfers, and 938 people in the two relays – a 4-person relay and an 8-person relay. Yes, an 8-person relay!!! That’s less than 3.3 miles per person! Man, I’m gonna be so jealous of them…
The course is two loops, so it’ll be my first looped marathon course. They describe it as having some flats and some hills, so I’m anticipating it to be overall a little flatter than Central Park. We’ve had over a week of rain along the East Coast, but it’s supposed to clear up a bit on Sunday, with highs in the low 70s and lows in the low 50s, so it should be pretty good weather for running. I’m planning on wearing my yellow Marathon Maniac t-shirt for the first time, along with inappropriate hot pink gloves and rhinestones for fun.
Since Garmin Oz was less than 3 weeks ago, and I’m fighting off a sore throat that’s threatening to turn into something worse, I’ll also keep open the option of only running one lap. Surprisingly, the organizers have said it’s ok to make that race-day decision! They said you’d still get a time and even a half marathon medal, if available. Crossing fingers I won’t have to do that, but if I do, it won’t be the end of the world, and luckily Delaware is so close that I can easily return next year.
But back to what’s most important: The food! The organizers said that “[b]efore the race, there will be coffee, rolls, spreads, bananas, water and Gatorade,” which is already a lot. During the race they’ll have Gatorade and gels, but more importantly there’s “a Cookie Stop at Mile 8 & Mile 20.” Awesome, right? But check out what they’ll have after the race:
Please plan to visit the FranksWine Champagne Tent for a complementary post race glass of champagne! Also, your hospitality wristband will entitle you to 4 beers from our Michelob Ultra / Shock Top Beer Garden. Your post race meal will feature BBQ bourbon pulled pork, chicken, or burger sliders, pasta salad and fresh fruit from 2 Fat Guys Catering; Seasons Pizza; Bananas from Shop Rite; soft pretzels from the Pretzel Boys; Herrs Snacks, Hy Point Dairy Farms chocolate milk; Canada Dry beverages; Vitamin Water and Smart Water. (emphasis added)
5 alcoholic beverages and enough food for several full meals?! No wonder I signed up for this race…
My biggest (recurring) fear is that all the food will be gone by the time I finish, since I’ll be one of the last finishers on this 6-hour time limit course (and there are so many halfers and relay runners!). If that happens, I will be sorely disappointed (and plain sore), but I’ll try to console myself with the full pantry of snacks I brought from home (not to mention the plethora of restaurants in the downtown and riverfront area).
The race also gives out a ton of swag: For marathoners, “a gender specific technical running shirt … a Headsweats running hat… and a special finisher’s medal from Crown Trophy.” Everyone will get a personalized race bib, free online digital photos, and other goodies in the race bag (including a “Memo from a Delaware Marathoner” memo pad and a Delaware Marathon Pint Glass). Expect all my memos to be from that pad from now on.
Delaware has only 1,982 square miles of territory (according to the race info packet – online sources have it range from 1,954 to 2,491, with many answers in-between). I don’t know how they’ll fit all that food into less than 2,000 square miles, but I’ll help them get rid of a lot of it.
Have you ever visited Delaware? Are you incorporated there? What’s your favorite snack? Share in the comments!