Lottery is Settled, When Does Your Training Begin?

I hadn’t received my AJC Peachtree Road Race confirmation email Monday morning before people started complaining in the comments section of last week’s blog post that they lost the lottery.
Race organizers confirm that expanding the race by 5,000 runners to 60,000 for 2011 left about 2,000 people who entered the lottery on the outside looking in.
Condolences to any shut-outs who had their heart set on running the Peachtree this year, especially anyone who has a long streak going of under ten years. (If you were shut out and have at least ten Peachtrees under your belt, you can appeal to the Atlanta Track Club and ask for a dispensation).
One good thing about the lottery – it did apparently eliminate the technical glitches from past years when everyone tried to access the online sign up at the same instant. This year the online system worked well based on everything I’ve heard.
In my slacker days – the two decades before last year at this time – I put my running shoes away for the winter and put off beginning training for the Peachtree until the spring was well under way. For a long time, under the old paper system, I waited until I got my bib number in the mail as the signal it was time to start training. I had to abandon that practice when bibs started arriving about a month before the race.
Still, until last year I hadn’t taken a serious approach to my Peachtree training in more than 30 years. After I signed up for the race last year I volunteered to write a blog for from the perspective of an average runner. A friend at work suggested I use the blog to set a public goal of running the Peachtree in less than an hour in 2010. I know thousands of runners covered the course faster than that last year, but it was 15 minutes faster than I ran it in 2009.
After a spring of more disciplined training than years past, I ran the 2010 Peachtree in exactly an hour. After the race a friend I run with, who also has a history of taking winter months off, said we should keep up our training during the “off season.”
And so we have. I’ve run a 5K on a cold and rainy morning a week before Christmas and kept up my training during a steady drizzle on New Year’s Day. I’ve adopted a bit of a holiday running theme, since I also ran a 10K on St. Patrick’s Day.
I’ll share some of my experiences and tips here in coming months. Commenters on this blog offered me some great advice during the 2010 spring training season and I’m sure that will happen again this year.
Starting next week I’ll be posting to this blog twice a week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays leading up to race day.
And even though I’ve become a bit more of a serious runner than I was before last spring, I have no intention of taking things I post here too seriously.

11 comments Add your comment


March 29th, 2011
6:45 am

Something’s wrong here. My wife got the confirmation email (as did I) but when you use the search feature ajc has, it doesn’t list her (it does list me).

So we’re assuming she’s in, but don’t know for sure!

Stan Hess

March 29th, 2011
7:15 am

Were a long way from the 110 that started the first race…we just showed up that morning paid and ran!! It has become quite a production…Good luck to those that have made it in, and condolences to those that did not. I hope this years race is the best ever!!

Gen Neyland

March 29th, 2011
8:14 am

I thought I heard on WSB yesterday that the total number of entrants via the lottery was over 60,000 but just slightly. Taking out the number of folks that joined the ATC for guaranteed entry and other guaranteed entrants, I wonder what the actual percentage is for those that played the race lottery and will fill the balance of participants…

Gen Neyland

March 29th, 2011
8:34 am

As a runner who has suffered the effects of over-use injuries, I’ve learned the hard way not to try and make up the slower winter months of maintenance running with more intense training too early in the season. Training is a personal issue where one size does not fit all. Most of us have limitations. Finding those limits need not be painful. Listen to your body. And when your mind tells you to stop after 6 miles of a 10 mile scheduled run, if in pain, do so. If your mind would rather be home in the Lazy-Boy, tell the brain to shut up and keep plugging. Good luck to all…


March 29th, 2011
9:44 am

If you’re able to handle 60,000, seems easy enough to just accept the other 2,000, and turn no one away? Call a news conference, announce you’ve worked with sponsors, evaluated logistics, etc., etc., and proud to not turn away anyone who wants to run this year. Seems like a golden opportunity to me.

cat friend

March 29th, 2011
9:52 am

I think I’m in – at least the search says “registrant confirmed”. I may have accidentally deleted the confirming email, thinking it was spam because I didn’t expect MarathonGuide as the sender. Here goes! My submitted time 1:15 should have me in wave L?


March 29th, 2011
2:11 pm

After having run 7 to 9 PRR’s (I don’t think I’ve got 10) I was one of those lucky ones rejected. So, I’ll find another event for the July 4th weekend. But I’m also done with any ATC events, whether working as a volunteer or running. In the past we knew what we had to do to get in the PRR and felt like it was an Atlanta event. Now it’s luck of the draw or beg for a dispensation. Not my thing.


April 1st, 2011
12:59 pm

I’m one of the ones rejected as well. A few others I have talked to who did not get in were ones like me who waited until the last evening to register. I’m wondering when others that were not accepted submitted their registrations. If the ones who were rejected all registered in the last few hours, then there was no way this was a true lottery. In the past couple of years I’ve gotten in because I’ve worked like crazy to sign up as soon as the online registration opened. This year I assumed that wasn’t necessary. I agree with oldschooldog, why not just let the other 2,000 have entries? Surely there is some percentage of confirmed registrants who do not show up on raceday anyway.


April 2nd, 2011
3:48 pm

TMS, I did not get in. I registered March 19th.


April 4th, 2011
12:20 pm

Rod I had the same issue. When I used the search, my husband didn’t come up as one of the registrants. He received the email, and they took the money out of our account. I hope there are no problems when we go to pick up our numbers.


April 4th, 2011
11:24 pm

I was selected to run this year but feel that the lottery is unfair to seasoned runners, who train with the race in mind. Why push yourself when you may not run anyway?