Run Forest Run.

I wish I had the extra time in my schedule to be a more dedicated runner. As it stands I barely have the extra time to shower, but I would like to complete at least a half marathon in my lifetime. More running events are evaluating their impact on the environment and are trying to lessen their footprint. Clearly I live on the wrong coast to participate in any of these races. Here are the top ten green races you can participate in this year:

1. Austin Marathon, Tex.
As if solar generators, a finish-line farmers' market, organic race tees, and bio-diesel vehicles weren't enough, the event recycles 14,375 pounds of trash.

2. Nature's Path Whidbey Island Marathon, Wash.
The event features an organic prerace dinner, goodie bags made of 100 percent post consumer recycled paper, and finishers' medallions made of recycled glass.

3. Manitoba Marathon, Canada
This Winnipeg event uses only compostable food-service items and diverts 1,723 pounds of plastic, cardboard, and aluminum from the landfill.

4. Canmore Rocky Mountain Half-Marathon, Canada
The start and finish areas are "waste-free zones," where everything used must be reusable or recyclable. All proceeds from the 2007 event went to environmental causes.

5. City of Portland Triathlon, Ore.
Organizers use solar power and buy carbon credits to offset participant travel. Runners get local organic food, bamboo shirts, and age-group trophies made of recycled bike parts.

6. ING Hartford Marathon, Conn.
An innovative 2,000-gallon water fountain lets 40 runners drink at once, eliminating the use of 10,000 plastic bottles. Runners can enjoy a postrace feast of local and organic foods.

7. JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge Series
Participants get to races via shuttles or are urged to use a Web-based carpool coordinator. Other initiatives have saved five tons of paper, six tons of plastic, and 5,000 gallons of crude oil.

8. Portland Marathon, Ore.
Since 1993, more than 100,000 finishers have received a tree seedling. Also, aid stations are situated near hose connections, and bicycles are used for race-day course management.

9. Great Lakes Endurance, Mich.
This trail-running series serves mostly organic, locally grown food. Runners must carry their own water, and they receive organic cotton tees and prizes made by local artists.

10. Eugene Marathon, Ore.
Volunteer "master recyclers" sort all garbage, collecting 70 percent of material for recycling. A solar generator powers the finish-line stage and vendor area.

via:: Runner's World Nov. 2008 and flickr.