Austin Distance Challenge

Back in the fall of 2010 when I first embarked on my running journey, I discovered the Austin Distance Challenge. It was a bit ambitious for someone just starting out, but kept it in the back of my mind for the next year.

Once the fall of 2011 rolled around, I realized one of the races in the ADC fell on the same day as the Marine Corps Marathon, making me ineligible to enter.

That brings us to this year. Fall is just around the corner, and it looks like the stars may FINALLY be aligned for me to take part in the Austin Distance Challenge.


So what exactly is the ADC? It’s a series of six races of increasing distances leading up to the Austin Marathon & Half Marathon. Everyone registered for the challenge receives the following:

  • long-sleeved tech shirt
  • 1 year membership to Austin Runners Club
  • access to ADC VIP Tent post-race
  • invitation to Celebration Party in March

And pending completion of the challenge:

  • custom printed runners jacket
  • certificate of completion
  • Overall, Masters and Age Group Awards

Austin Distance Challenge Races

IBM Uptown Classic

October 7, 2012

This is a staple in my fall race schedule and is actually my goal 10K for 2012; I have my sights set on 6.2 miles in under an hour!

Run for the Water

October 28, 2012

Run for the Water happens to fall on the same day as a 20-22 miler for Philly Marathon training so I’ll probably run 5ish miles pre-race and 5ish miles post-race.

Decker Challenge

December 9, 2012

I’m not gonna lie: this race scares the crap out of me. Last year when I volunteered at IM 70.3 Austin, I caught a glimpse of the Decker course – holy freakin’ hills.

To quote Joe Marruchella:

The Decker Challenge is one of the longest running and most well-respected races in Austin.  A windy course with historically poor December weather on the lake, can make Decker a tough race.  But it is the hills that put the“challenge” in the Decker Challenge.

Decker Elevation

Photo Credit: Joe Still Runs for Dom

Sooo… yeah. That should be a fun race. Oh! And it’s two weeks after Philly. I won’t be breaking any records at Decker, that’s for damn sure!

3m Half Marathon

January 13, 2013

Another repeat offender on my race schedule, and most likely my half marathon goal race for 2013. 3M’s elevation chart is pretty easy on the eyes:

3M Half Marathon Course Elevation

Oh heyyy PR City. Can’t wait to visit you again in January!

Rogue 30K Logo_final

January 27, 2013

The Rogue 10K & 30K will be a new race for the ADC this year, and a new race for me as well. Since I won’t be training for a full marathon in January, I highly doubt I’ll be inclined to choose the 18 mile route. 10K for me, please.

And last, but certainly not least…

Austin Marathon

February 17, 2013

I’ve run the half twice now – incredible race!! Earlier this year I said I’d be taking on the full in 2013 but I think it’ll be 13.1 for the third time. Ashley is talking about flying in for it so we’ll most likely run the half together. Exciting!

And that’s all. Just a few races – no big deal.

Have you ever participated in a race/distance challenge like this? Fellow Austinites – have you ever done the ADC? Are you planning on it this year?

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  1. Good for you Melissa! The Distance Challenge is a great series. I’ll be skipping a few races ts year preparing for Houston but back in 2014!

    • Thanks Joe! I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little more terrified of Decker after just reading about “Quadzilla” haha. Best of luck training for Houston!

  2. WOW! I applaud you for the challenge! great job!! that’s a crazy amount of races!! keep up the great work! SPA love!

  3. so pumped for 3m. i am going to be HUNGRY for that race! o.m.g. can’t wait to see you again!

  4. It’s a lot of races and a lot of $ to register for all of those. I’m considering the Run for the Water and/or Decker half and registered already for the Livestrong half.

    • It’s definitely a lot, but I don’t splurge much on myself so races are a treat for me 🙂 I run 50% of the races each year so it only made sense to add a few more to schedule and challenge myself a little!

      Please run Decker with me!!

  5. OMG That sounds so awesome!!!! A lot of running but a great way to challenge yourself and stay motivated! I’ve never heard of anything like that. Good luck!!! Especially with Philly thrown into the mix!

  6. Pingback: ARC Decker Challenge 1/2 Marathon Race Recap - Melissa RunsMelissa Runs

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