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Posted at 12:17 PM ET, 03/24/2011

Runners hit the streets of Washington

Lots of races take you right by D.C. landmarks. (Bill O'Leary - The Washington Post)
Springtime in D.C. means traffic, and I’m not just referring to the tourists inching around the Tidal Basin trying to spy some cherry blossoms; I’m talking about road races. In the next few weeks, streets will be closed off for runners competing in the National Marathon (Saturday), the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run (April 3) and the George Washington Parkway Classic (April 10), just to name a few.

While races can be a pain for people trying to get into or out of the city on four wheels, they can also be an exciting sight for spectators and a new view of Washington for competitors. After all, how often do you get the chance to run down the middle of Memorial Bridge?

Interested in getting in on the action? We have some tidbits about fun runs, brunches and where to carbo-load after the jump.

Regardless of your favored race, from 10k to an ultramarathon, you may be craving some pasta the night before logging all those miles. We have you covered with our list of the best restaurants for getting your fill of carbohydrates.

And if you’re the type of person that gets more excited about the post-race stack of pancakes than pounding the pavement, be sure to take a look at some of our favorite brunch spots around town.

If you’re intrigued by the less competitive side of running, you may want to check out the weekly Crystal City 5K runs, that take place after work on Fridays, starting April 1. Moira McLaughlin wrote about the Twilight 5Ks last year, and you can register for the runs on the Pacers Web site.

For the more competitive among us, Express just covered the new National Road Racing League, which gives runners that aren’t quite gold medalists the opportunity to compete in teams against other groups of racers.

By  |  12:17 PM ET, 03/24/2011

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