32 Must-Do January/February Races Across The U.S.


Valentine’s Day Hearts ‘r’ Running 5K
Feb. 15, St. Paul, Minn.


Spread the love this Valentine’s Day at the Hearts ‘r’ Running 5K at Como Lakeside Pavilion—a much more cardio-friendly option to polishing off a heart-shaped box of milk chocolates. The race promotes preventing illness by simply exercising—the greatest Rx—and living a healthy lifestyle with family and friends. Proceeds from the race go to the Charities Challenge mission of prescribing exercise, training and active communities to prevent illness—participants are even encouraged to don a sign on their backs declaring their own reasons for participating.

Groundhog Marathon
Feb. 2, Grand Rapids, Mich.


In true Groundhog Day tradition, runners will feel a hint of déjà vu as they loop the 4.4-mile course six times during the race (the course is certified for those seeking a BQ performance). The most appropriately dressed groundhog will be chosen prior to the race, and finishers will receive a hoodie and an embroidered stocking cap. Overall winners, both male and female, will receive a piece of Groundhog Day art made by a local chainsaw artist. Bundle up and hang with Punxsutawney Phil and Grand Rapids Gus in this annual celebration.

Frozen Gnome 50K and 10K
Jan. 11, Crystal Lake, Ill.


Gnominate yourself to join the McHenry County Ultrarunning Dudes and Dudettes (aka, MUDD), at their annual Frozen Gnome 50K and 10K. The course boasts a winter wonderland as you weave through the hilly, singletrack trail loop. The finish line will be stocked with plenty of toasty treats to warm you after the trek through the frozen wilderness. Bring all of your biggest fans to cheer at the various spectator points throughout the race and offer much-appreciated encouragement. With age-group awards, as well as various surprises along the way, this race will be one to remember.

Cupid’s Undie Run
Feb. 15, Chicago


Clothing is not encouraged at this Valentine’s Day undie party. Freeze your buns off with hundreds of other revealing runners, and race to beat frostbite in uncomfortable places during this mile-long jaunt through Chicago. If the chance to show off those abs in a socially acceptable fashion—not punishable by law—isn’t enough, then revel in the fact that this nationwide series benefits The Children’s Tumor Foundation. Strip down for a cause—just remember to put on underwear at the start line. Full nudity is smartly discouraged, given that this race is held in mid-February in Chicago.

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