Between yesterday's Boston Marathon and this weekend's Nike Women's Half Marathon, it's a busy week for distance running. For some neophytes, though, the idea of running 26.2 or 13.1 miles at a time can be a little daunting. If you'd like to participate in an outdoor road race without all the strenuous training, threat of shin splints or revisions to your diet, perhaps these two upcoming races are more your speed.
Flying Dog Sprint for Spat 0.10K
When: Sunday, May 4, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: Broadway Square in Fells Point, Baltimore.
Background: The first race sponsored by the Frederick brewery promises "All of the glory. None of the guts."
The course: The 0.1 K course (that's about 328 feet) is located on South Broadway, near the bottom of Fells Point. A mid-race rehydration station will provide runners with an oyster shooter made with Flying Dog's Pearl Necklace oyster stout.
Registration info: Registration is open now. The $23 fee includes a T-shirt and a bumper sticker.
Who benefits? Proceeds from the race go to the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults and the Oyster Recovery Partnership. (If you're wondering, "spat" is the term for a developing oyster less than 25 millimeters long.)
Best place for pre-race carb loading: Lucia's Joann Kitchen in Broadway Market (1640-41 Aliceanna St., Baltimore) offers some Korean specialties, such as bibimbap, in addition to pancakes and omelets. They begin serving at 8 a.m., and the market is just steps from the racecourse.
Best place for post-race refreshment: Once the race ends, a block party features raw and grilled oysters from Rappahannock River Oysters, Barren Island Oysters and Hollywood Oyster Company, beers from Flying Dog, and bloody marys using George's Bloody Mary Mix. Everything is sold a la carte; oysters are $1 each.
The Maritime Republic of Eastport's 17th Annual 0.05K Bridge Run
When: Saturday, May 10 "at the crack o'noon."
Where: The Spa Creek Bridge, which connects Compromise Street in Annapolis to Eastport's Sixth Street.
Background: Billed as "the not-so ultimate competition of strength, endurance and determination," this annual race is a dash across the drawbridge that separates historic downtown Annapolis from the Eastport neighborhood. It's sponsored by the breakaway Maritime Republic of Eastport.
The course: The race begins on the Annapolis side of the bridge and finishes in Eastport shortly afterward. A "hydration station" is located halfway across the span. Race materials warn that "some competitors have taken as long as five minutes" to complete the grueling race.
Registration info: Registration is open now. You can register in advance online, or on race day beginning at 10 a.m. at Fleet Feet in Eastport (318 Sixth St., Annapolis). Either way, the $20 fee includes a T-shirt.
Who benefits? Proceeds from the race go to the Eastport Volunteer Fire Department.
Best place for pre-race carb loading: Chick and Ruth's Delly, on Main Street, has everything you need for breakfast, including Belgian waffles, stacks of French toast and 15 different omelets. (Since you're in Annapolis, the menu has a separate list of crab omelets.) If you're parking in Eastport, try the Leeward Market and Cafe for ham, egg and cheese sandwiches or bagel sandwiches with "the works."
Best place for post-race refreshment: Boatyard Bar and Grill and Davis' Pub, two comfortable Eastport ports of call popular with sailors, will be packed with racers and spectators enjoying cold beer or a pint of rum and tonic.