If the thought of post-race water and a banana doesn’t sound sweet enough for you, set your sights on a race that offers something a little more decadent. Races that are known for their desserts can be found from the 5K to the ultra-marathon distance.
- Beat the Blerch 10K, Half Marathon, & Marathon (Carnation, Wash.) – Fans of the Oatmeal comic can revel in this festive race that offers multiple distance options. At every aid station, you’ll find birthday cake, Nutella and grape beverages. In addition, participants receive a stuffed goodie bag, free race photos and a chance to outrun an actual Blerch.
- JFK 50-Miler (Boonsboro, Md.) – If you’re up to the ultra-run challenge, this historic race is a true test of endurance. Aid stations include some sweet items, such as M&Ms, cookies and even red velvet cake at mile 38.
- Mud & Chocolate Half Marathon & 4.5 Mile Run (Redmond, Wash. & Sammamish, Wash.) – This trail run series for chocolate lovers features a chocolate aid station, a chocolate medal and “Chocomania” at the finish line. Register as a “Chocoholic” for twice the fun – run the 4.5 mile on Saturday and then the half marathon on Sunday. For images they have a great gallery here.
- Baker’s Dozen Half Marathon (Hurricane, Utah) – This half marathon and 5K is aptly named, with treats as required fare during the half marathon (treats are optional for the 5K). Volunteers keep track of your gluttony as you pass the Sugar Shack “aid station”, which includes treats such as donuts, Twinkies and cupcakes. Special awards are given for the three finishers who eat the most treats during the race.
- Krispy Kreme Challenge (Raleigh, N.C.) – Organized by students at North Carolina State University, this race started as a dare between friends and now includes over 8,000 runners, raising money for the N.C. Children’s Hospital. The challenge is simple in concept, but decadent in execution – run 2.5 miles through downtown Raleigh to a Krispy Kreme store, eat a dozen doughnuts and then run 2.5 miles back to the Belltower in under one hour. Five miles and 2,400 calories too much for you to handle? There’s also a “Casual Runner” option where the doughnut requirement is waived.
- Cocoa Women’s Half Marathon (San Antonio, Texas) – Grab your girlfriends for a beautiful, flat half marathon that is topped off with hot chocolate, chocolate chip pancakes, fine chocolates, cookies, chicken mole tacos, and chocolate-infused cupcakes at the finish line.
- Hot Chocolate 15K/5K (Various locations) – It’s no wonder it’s called “America’s Sweetest Race” – the post-race party includes finishers’ mugs filled with hot chocolate, chocolate fondue and other treats.
- Gateway Cupcake 5K (St. Louis, Mo.) – It’s a battle between “those who eat and those who compete” in this 5K run. For each cupcake you eat, you can deduct five minutes from your finish time over the course of five cupcake “aid” stations where you collect your cupcake toppers and turn them in for the adjusted finish time calculation.
- Pumpkin Pie 5K (Rehoboth Beach, Del.) – A November tradition, enjoy a slice of pumpkin pie after this beachy fall race.
- The Great Cake Race 5K & 1 Mile (Lexington, Ky.) – After your run through a beautiful course of rolling hills, indulge in a cupcake and some ice cream at the finish line!
While you won’t be burning more calories than you consume in some of these races, you’re sure to have a fun and memorable time!