Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many athletes participate in this race?
A: More than 8,500 athletes registered for the IMT Des Moines Marathon races in 2012. 1,587 athletes finished the IMT Des Moines Marathon, 4,257 finished the IMT Des Moines Half Marathon, and 1,119 finished The Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race. 65 teams competed in the Bankers Trust Marathon Relay.
Q: Does the IMT Des Moines Marathon sell out or have a 'cap' on the number of registrations?
A: No. Registration will remain open in all race divisions through Saturday, October 19, 2013 at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo.
Q: Do finishers in IMT Des Moines Marathon race divisions receive a shirt and a medal?
A: Yes, a race shirt will be given to registered athletes in all race divisions at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo. The official race shirt is offered in men's and women's sizes S through XXL. Athletes in the IMT Des Moines Marathon & Half Marathon receive a premium 1/4 zip mock pullover, while athletes in the Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race and Bankers Trust Marathon Relay will receive short sleeve, soft tech performance shirt.
See the sizing chart on the Athlete Shirt page for more information.
Athlete shirt exchanges will not be allowed at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo. If you would like to exchange your shirt for any reason, you will be able to do so on race day or after the event. If you need to change the shirt size you ordered, you may do so if at least four weeks prior to race day.
Finisher medals are presented at the finish line to all finishers in the IMT Des Moines Marathon & Half Marathon, Bankers Trust Marathon Relay, and The Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race.
Overall awards only will be announced at the Awards Ceremony on race day. Overall and age division awards will be mailed directly to the winners of each race once race results are made official.
Prizes will be given out to random finishers at the finish line area and Michelob ULTRA Run To The ULTRA festivities.
Q: Where and when do I pick up my race materials like my race number/bib and timing chip?
A: At the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo on Friday, October 18 from 3 to 8 p.m. or Saturday, October 19 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Hy-Vee Hall is located in the Iowa Events Center | 730 3rd Street |Des Moines, IA 50309
You must pick up your athlete packet, personalized race number/bib, race shirt and IPICO Sportag™ at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo.
Q: I have never attended a Sports & Fitness Expo before. What is it all about?
A: The Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo features official IMT Des Moines Marathon merchandise, souvenirs, gifts and many exhibitors of health & fitness related products and services.
The Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo is the place to get all the information you'll need to enhance your race weekend experience. It is free and opened to the public...don't miss it!
Q: Where is the pasta dinner located?
A: The ABC5 Pasta Dinner featuring Above + Beyond Cancer is offered in conjunction with the MidAmerican Energy Speaker Series from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, October 19. Seating and meal service will begin at 5:30 with presentations from Above + Beyond Cancer starting at 6 p.m.
Hy-Vee Hall is located in the Iowa Events Center | 730 3rd Street | Des Moines, IA 50309
Q: What is the course elevation?
A: The IMT Des Moines Marathon does pose hills and elevation challenges from Mile 3 though Mile 8 on the Marathon course before leveling out, while the IMT Des Moines Half Marathon and the Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race courses are considered flat. An elevation chart is available in the lower right hand corner of the IMT Des Moines Marathon course map.
Q: Is the IMT Des Moines Marathon a Boston Marathon Qualifier course?
A: Yes, the IMT Des Moines Marathon is a Boston Qualifier. Qualifying for the Boston Marathon is based on a designated finish time that has been established for various age groups. To actually qualify for the race an athlete must complete that race under the finish time established. The qualifying race must be run on a USATF certified course, which the IMT Des Moines Marathon is. Boston Marathon qualifying times are good for eighteen months.
For example: If an athlete qualifies for the Boston Marathon (April, 2014) at the IMT Des Moines Marathon (October, 2013). They would be eligible to register for the next two runnings of the Boston Marathon (2014 and 2015).
IMT Des Moines Marathon - USATF Certification IA07009-MF
For more information on qualifying, visit the Boston Marathon website.
Q: May I wear headphones on the course?
A: The use of personal music devices is strongly discouraged at this race. To enjoy all that our race has to offer and for the safety of all participants, the IMT Des Moines Marathon encourages a headphone-free environment during the running of the IMT Des Moines Marathon.
We believe your race experience and those around you will be greatly enhanced by leaving the headphones at home or in the car. Running headphone-free allows opportunities to develop camaraderie with your fellow runners and to enjoy everything the race has to offer. Plus, volunteers and spectators will be on course cheering you on and providing directions to help get you to the finish line.
Runner safety has always been, and will continue to be, a top priority for our event. Please be mindful of the other participants and respect the race personnel to ensure a safe and enjoyable race for everyone. You will not be disqualified or removed from the IMT Des Moines Marathon course for using a personal music device on race day if you are not competing for cash prizes under USATF rule #144.3b. This ruling does not apply to age division awards.
Q: I would like to walk the IMT Des Moines Marathon or Half Marathon. Is walking allowed?
A: Yes. You are able to walk the IMT Des Moines Marathon, Half Marathon, or The Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race. Both the Marathon and Half Marathon courses are open for 7 hours. You should have plenty of time to complete the Half Marathon and as long as you stay on a 16:00 minute per mile pace for the Marathon, you will finish the course in the allotted time.
If you fall behind a 16:00 minute per mile pace and would like to continue with the race you are welcome to do so. Please note that during the later miles of the race services like aid stations and course support may not be available.
The reality is that no one wants to be the last person in a race. Well guess what, there is always going to be a first place finisher and a last place finisher. You may want to consider your own water and a course map. Don't worry, we won't pack up the finish line before you cross it. You will receive the finisher medal you have earned.
Q: Can someone ride the course with me on a bike, roller blades, skate board etc.? Can I run/walk with a baby stroller? How about a dog on a leash?
A: No. The only people allowed on the course are registered athletes. Baby strollers and dogs are not allowed in any of the race divisions as a safety precaution.
Q: I would like to start early, can I?
A: IMT Des Moines Marathon does not offer an early start. Anyone who would like to walk the course is welcome to, however they must start with the rest of the Marathon athletes at 8 a.m.
The IMT Des Moines Marathon course is open for 7 hours. If you feel that this is not enough time to finish a marathon we do understand. We encourage you to try the Half Marathon or begin training so that you may participate in the Marathon next year.
Q: Is race day registration available?
Q: I registered for one of the IMT Des Moines Marathon races and cannot make it or I have injured myself and cannot run. Do I get a refund?
A: Sorry, refunds are not offered for any reason, even if with a doctor's note. Athletes are also are not able to transfer their registration to another person.
The no refund/transfer policy of the IMT Des Moines Marathon is not unlike the no refund/transfer policy of most major marathons and endurance races in the United States.
Q: I have registered for the Marathon and would like to switch my registration to the Half Marathon. What should I do?
A: Please contact the IMT Des Moines Marathon office at the time that you make your final decision to switch your registration to the Half Marathon. You must be registered for the race you plan to participate in. Your registration will be updated. Sorry, we are unable to refund you the difference in price.
Q: I have registered for the Half Marathon and would like to switch my registration to the Marathon. What should I do?
A: Please contact the IMT Des Moines Marathon office at the time you would like to switch your registration to the Marathon. You must be registered for the event you plan to participate in. Your registration will be updated. You will be responsible for paying the price difference between the two events at the time of the registration change.
Q: I have registered for the Marathon or Half Marathon and would like to switch my registration to the 5K Road Race. What should I do?
A: Please contact the IMT Des Moines Marathon office at the time you would like to switch your registration to the 5K Road Race. You must be registered for the event you plan to participate in. Your registration will be updated.
Q: Is there a host hotel that is offering a discount for IMT Des Moines Marathon athletes? Is there one located near the start of the race?
A: Yes, there are many host hotels associated with the IMT Des Moines Marathon. The Renaissance Savery Hotel, Marriott Downtown, Embassy Suites on the River, and Holiday Inn Mercy Campus are within blocks of the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo and start/finish line of the races.
You can learn more at the Travel/Hotels page.
Q: Are the races chip timed and may I provide my own timing chip?
A: Yes, the IMT Des Moines Marathon races are all chip timed utilizing the IPICO (eye-pee-co) timing system. To be technical, the IPICO timing system utilizes timing 'tags' rather than timing 'chips'. They are called a Sportag™.
The End Result will provide IPICO timing services at the races this year.
You are responsible for the IPICO Sportag™ and should attach it to your shoe laces on race day. A volunteer will assist in removing it from your shoe at the finish line. You will be responsible for a lost or unreturned IPICO Sportag™.
Q: I have never used the IPICO Sportag™ before. Help!
A: Don't worry, the IPICO timing system is new to the United States and the IMT Des Moines Marathon. In addition to a course overview IPICO timing system instructions will be given out with your athlete packet at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo.
Q: The registration form is not asking if I want to personalize my bib. Why not?
A: All athletes will be assigned a race number. This number is listed on the athlete bib. The IMT Des Moines Marathon offers personalized bibs as a part of race registration. By default, your first name will appear on your race number/bib in addition to your race number. You must be registered by October 1, 2013 in order to receive a personalized race number/bib with your name on it.
Q: Are there reduced price plans?
A: The IMT Des Moines Marathon does not offer reduced price plans.
Q: Will there be any type of shower facilities that runners can use after the Marathon? If not, any gyms/YMCA's close to the finish where I could use their facilities? I plan on catching a flight shortly after the finish to return home and won't be able to go back to the hotel.
A: The Riverfront YMCA will open their doors at 6:00 a.m. on race morning to our athletes. You will have access to the locker rooms, including showers and the gym for stretching. Please remember to bring a lock to secure your valuables. The Riverfront YMCA is located at 2nd and Locust, one block east of Nollen Plaza and all of the race day activities.
Riverfront YMCA | 200 Locust Street | Des Moines, IA 50309
Q: Is there a bag drop offered for the race?
A: Yes. The Lint Companies Baggage Claim is offered on race day. Simply use your athlete goodie bag to store any items you want to pick up after the race with us. Visit the start/finish line map on the Course Maps page for location.
Q: What is the energy drink and gel offered on the course?
A: Gatorade Endurance Formula is offered along with Crystal Clear Bottled Water at aid stations through out the course. You will find aid stations approximately every other mile to every mile. Some of the aid stations later in the race are accessible multiple times due to the layout of the course.
GU Energy gels will be offered at Mile 14, 20, and 23 on the Marathon course and at Mile 7 and 10 on the Half Marathon course. The IMT Des Moines Marathon features vanilla bean, chocolate outrage, strawberry banana, jet blackberry, and mandarin orange flavors as voted on by members of the IMT Des Moines Marathon Facebook page. Join the discussion!
As with any race, if you consume energy gels such as GU Energy on race day, you should not rely soley on the energy gels provided by the event. Race prepared. GU Energy gels are available for sale at the Scheels Sports & Fitness Expo.
Q: How often will there be bathroom breaks on the IMT Des Moines Marathon and Half Marathon course?
A: Some of the bathroom breaks (porta potties) are posted along the route on the IMT Des Moines Marathon course map, though not all of the bathroom breaks are on the map.
More than 150 porta potties are scheduled to be placed along the courses and 130 porta potties to be placed at the start and finish line. You will not have to pass more than 2 miles to find a place for relief, should you feel the need. The course is designed to offer aid stations every other mile and porta potties at the miles in between.
Q: Can someone hop on the course for a few miles and run with me as a pacer or even just for fun?
A: No. Each person on the course must be registered and must have a race bib assigned to them. Anyone who is on the course illegally will be removed and you will be disqualified.
Q: What is the procedure if a registered athlete does not finish one of the races? How does one return to the finish? I'm registered for one of the races, but due to training problems, I may only run part of it.
A: If you do decide to run the IMT Des Moines Marathon and need to drop out at any point, we ask that you try to do so at a Mercy Medical Center First Aid Station along the course.
If you are unable to make it to Mercy Medical Center First Aid Station, we understand. Please remove yourself from the race course and wait for a Bike Iowa support team member to approach you along the side of the road, sidewalk or a driveway. They will contact a Mercy Medical Center Sag Wagon vehicle to pick you up and return you to Nollen Plaza.
Q: Are there overall and age division awards?
A: Overall awards and cash prizes are offered to the top three male and female finishers and top male and female master's finishers in the Marathon and Half Marathon.
A cash bonus is also offered to the top male and female finisher in the Marathon if they break the current course record.
Age division awards are offered in the IMT Moines Marathon & Half Marathon and The Principal Financial Group 5K Road Race to the top three male and female finishers in each of the following age groups: 14 and under, 15 -19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70 and over (older age group awards as applicable).
Overall awards will be announced for each race at 12:00 p.m.
The IMT Des Moines Marathon does not duplicate or ‘double-dip’ cash or trophy awards.
Age division awards will be mailed directly to winners in all divisions once race results become official.
Q: When is the next IMT Des Moines Marathon going to be held?
A: Sunday, October 19, 2014. The IMT Des Moines Marathon is always the 3rd Sunday in October.