Outside of a marathon, the best way to test people's endurance is to see how long they can listen to a radio play-by-play of a marathon. Take on a real challenge with this Groupon.
Sunday, May 6, is race day. Both races begin at the intersection of South 17th Street and Commerce Street, where participants gather for the half-marathon's 8 a.m. start time, followed by the 5K's 8:30 a.m. start time. The half-marathon takes a challenging, scenic tour of downtown Tacoma and Commencement Bay, ending with a smooth downhill finish and a hint of lemon zest. Maintaining sweeping views of Mount Rainier, the 5K loops through downtown on a course suitable for running and walking.
One would expect Paul Morrison to be a little winded by now, if not too weary to consume his favorite, energizing treat from Starbucks. This is because the spry co-owner of the Tacoma City Marathon has been running for the past 31 years and cheering on peers through his company's eight endurance events since 2007. His affinity for the sport was fully developed by age 12, when he had a bout of early onset entrepreneurship that caused a fever dream of owning a running store. The dream came to fruition when he opened Fleet Feet Sports in Bonney Lake, but his appetite for adrenaline and sweat-bonded companionship remained, unsatisfied by regular sprints through the woods with fellow ultramarathoners and chats with customers about their pronation.
The missing piece was Tony Phillippi, the founder of the world's largest running club, Marathon Maniacs. The company's name accurately reflects Phillippi's zeal for running, which was ignited on a high-school track when the burning rubber footing accidentally set his soul on fire. When the two sportsmen crossed paths, they immediately commiserated over the lack of distance races in Tacoma and set out to fill the void with the sound of steady, strong footfalls.
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