I ran a lot in 2014. I mean a lot. I ran four marathons, 25 half marathons, Ragnar and three 5Ks. And, those are just races. Of this past year, I don’t think I ran on the weekend just 2-3 times. In all I am sitting about 1150 miles put on the ‘ol legs. Needless to say, that’s a lot of running.
Starting out in 2014 I really didn’t go out to race so much, especially marathons. In fact January 1st of this year, I wasn’t planning on any marathons. At all. Now, a year later, I ended up running four. I’m a running whore. What can I say … you offer me a t-shirt, somewhere to run, a medal and free Creamies after the race and I’m there! (even if you just had free bananas I’d even show up for that).
Having ran over 30 races, I’ve gotten a lot of medals … or as I like to call it … BLING. And, as part of the Joshby Awards week I’d like to make it an annual tradition to rank my top ten race medals from the past year. There’s no real set criteria for my rankings, mainly my personal opinion on the design, look and feel of the medal. And, to some degree what that race meant to me. The Big Cottonwood and Ogden Marathons were very sentimental to me, so they may have received bonus points in my rankings.
But, anyways, without any further adieu, here are my top ten race medals of 2014 starting with number ten …
10) Ragnar Relay Wasatch Back
Last year’s Ragnar Relay medal was much bigger and heavier than the 2014 version, but I still like this one for a couple reasons. I do like non-traditional medals (meaning they’re not round) and I love detail. I dig the cut out of the relay motto of “connect, conquer, celebrate.” But, I wish it was bigger or at least the same size as the 2013 medal.
9) Timpanogos Half Marathon
I really like the Timp Half bling. It’s very sparkly and the logo is ingenious with the 13.1 incorporated into the design. But, the biggest knock on this medal is that I WISH it was much, much bigger. It’s relatively small. But, I absolutely love this race and had a blast pacing in my friend Jill for a new PR!
8) St. George Marathon
I am a sucker for red rock. Like, bad. I went to school in southern Utah and was able to enjoy the red rocks on a daily basis. But, now that I am back up north I don’t get to enjoy them much anymore. But, running the St. George Marathon you get red rock OVERLOAD … and I’m not complaining one bit. That’s why I love the race medal. It’s very St. George and very southern Utah with the red rock feel to it. My only knock about it though is that it is small and it kind of feels like a kitchen counter tile or something. And, it hasn’t changed for a while (at least since 2012). But, still, one of my favorites!
7) Howloween Half Marathon
I am usually not into the gimmicky race medals, but this is one of the exceptions. Not, only is the medal designed well, but it also glows in the dark (the race shirts did as well). Plus, the design is simple and not over done. It’s great. I am also keen on this medal because this was the second of two medals I got that day after running two half marathons the same day. Quite a feat and something I will always remember.
6) Deseret News Classic Half Marathon
The Deseret News Classic Marathon stepped it up this year. The past couple of years the medals were hardly noteworthy. In 2012 when I ran my first marathon the medal was small and extremely simple, almost like something you’d buy at a thrift store. Last year when they added the half marathon they improved on the 2012, but it was still small and relatively plain. But, this year they made the medal BIG, HEAVY and DETAILED. Plus, I love how they made the medal a wagon wheel in commemoration of Pioneer Day (the day in which the race is held). I sure hope the race doesn’t regress next year, because I loved these medals.
5) The Haunted Half Marathons (SLC & Provo)
It was hard for me to rank one of these medals above the other. I absolutely love both medals. Plus, I love the fact that the race didn’t just pass out the same medals at both races. They actually took the time to have two different medals and race shirts. MAJOR bonus points for the attention to detail. Plus, I really dig the spider medal (Provo race) and amount of detail that went into it, pretty non-traditional which is a plus. The Haunted Half never disappoints with their medals and they’re never the same either.
4) American Fork Canyon Half Marathon
Besides the weight, size and detail that goes into a medal, I am also a sucker for twirly things on the medal. And, the American Fork Canyon Half didn’t disappoint in that regard. The “THRIVE” on the medal twirls … which … may or may not have entertained me for a while post-race. Plus, I love the detailed mountain on the medal, it doesn’t do the actual race scenery justice, but it makes the medal very recognizable and fun.
3) Ogden Marathon
I really like this medal for many, many, many reasons. It was my secret marathon that I kept from many friends and social media so I could surprise my friend Becky at the starting line. It was a tough race for both of us and many others. But, I am so glad that I was able to finish the race with Becky and our friend Katheryn. It was a very special moment and something that helped change my perspective and attention towards running. The one thing I love about this medal is the “Ogden” sign arch that greets drivers to the city. You run past it during the marathon during the last couple of miles of the race. Plus, as you can see it’s very big and detailed … AND … it’s heavy. Very awesome medal and one that I will cherish forever.
2) Utah Valley Marathon
Another great race and one that I ran the whole way with Becky. It was our redemption run for the Ogden Marathon (we both tanked). But, what I love the most about this medal is that it not only hits all of my personal preferences in a medal (heavy, big, detailed, non-traditional and twirly component), but I love the color and design. As a graphic designer I love the center logo and use of color. I am sucker for orange and blue. Such a great color combination.
1) Revel Big Cottonwood Marathon
This was my favorite race of the whole season. This was the race that I ran with my friend Jill every step of the way. It was her first marathon and I told her I would run along with her. Most of the way we ran with our friend Tim and were later joined by Susette. It was such a special experience to be a part of that moment. Not to mention capturing THIS on my phone. Even though it doesn’t have a twirl component, the size and detail of the medal is perfect. I love the cut and simplicity to it, yet there is great detail to the leaf that I just love. It’s such a perfect for medal for a perfect moment.