Philadelphia Marathon Team: Reflections and Resolutions
As we begin to set goals and benchmarks in the new year for Philadelphia Marathon Weekend, we must first look back and reflect on just how far we’ve come. Last year was a monumental year for the Philadelphia Marathon Weekend as we celebrated the 30th running of the AACR Philadelphia Marathon, but that’s not all we celebrated. Take a look at some of the highlighted moments below that made 2023 a special year for us.
- Registration Record: In 2023, we saw the highest number of registered athletes in Philadelphia Marathon Weekend history! A record-breaking 34,442 athletes were registered across all four races (AACR Philadelphia Marathon, Dietz & Watson Philadelphia Half Marathon, Rothman Orthopaedics 8K, and the Nemours Children’s Run). Athletes worldwide were gathered in Philadelphia, with 57 countries represented during race weekend.
- Economic Impact: Philadelphia was booming during race weekend, with athletes from around the world shopping, dining out, and exploring the many historical landmarks and museums our city has to offer. For the Philadelphia Marathon Weekend, our hotel and hospitality industry saw a record-breaking $1.2 million in revenue (this number is based on the average hotel room rate provided by Maritz and the average daily food cost per person of $75 per day).
- Sustainability and Charitable Efforts: Last year, thanks in large part to the record-breaking number of participants, Philadelphia Marathon Weekend donated close to $200,000 in clothing to the Salvation Army, over 500 pairs of used sneakers to nonprofit organizations around the country, and 756 pounds of apples to Broad Street Ministries. AACR Runners for Research participants had a total of 800 fundraisers and raised a whopping $562,000 for cancer research.
- Expansion of Inclusivity: Philadelphia Marathon Weekend officials strive to ensure that those competing in any of the races over the weekend feel seen and included from the moment they visit the website and register to the triumphant moment they cross the finish line and receive their medal. In 2023, we expanded our gender diversity, equity, and inclusivity efforts to include non-binary participation in all races to meet the needs of our growing gender-diverse community and provide access and opportunity for all. We also ensured that category awards and non-elite prize money for the 2023 Philadelphia Marathon Weekend races were equally distributed across the three gender categories of competition. In 2023, there were 119 non-binary participants, with an additional 98 registrants choosing not to disclose.
Although we’ve made great progress, our work to ensure the continuing success and growth of Philadelphia Marathon Weekend is not done. Now that we’ve had a chance to reflect on our past year, we can work towards setting achievable goals for 2024 to continue our efforts and prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusivity to ensure all athletes can thrive and compete in a welcoming and safe environment.
Runners: Planning for your year of success.
Once you reflect and assess your skills and develop a clear picture of where you are now, you can decide where you want to go. To define the goals that you are looking to achieve in the new year, it’s important to set realistic benchmarks for achieving those goals to encourage you during the process and motivate you to continue moving forward.
For those looking to get into running or even participate in your first-ever marathon, that journey can begin right now by following the helpful tips below:
- Training Journal: Once you have defined your SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound), write them down and keep them visible to remind yourself of what you are working towards. Create a training schedule that suits your level and keep track of your progress and how you feel in a journal.
- Find a Community: Running groups and like-minded individuals can provide great motivation and support for your training journey. You can join a running club or group, sign up for an event, or recruit a friend or family member to run with you or cheer you on.
- Proper Gear: Invest in yourself and your goal by purchasing the proper gear to not only ensure your safety but also motivate and reward yourself! Our friends at ASICS are leading designers of athletic gear and have the latest in running technology.
- Have Fun: Remember that running is meant to be fun! If you find yourself stuck in a rut, try a new route, create fun new music playlists, or make a fun game out of each run. Don’t get discouraged or let your goals get in the way of enjoying the experience. You can always pivot and adapt your goals to make sure that they are working FOR you, not against you.
We hope these tips encourage you as you begin your running journey! We’ll be back in the spring to check in and update you on our progress for 2024. Have a healthy and safe new year!