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5K Medals for First Time runners

For a first time runner a medal is a big deal

#first5k medal, running medal, finisher's medalFirsts in life are a big deal. Like a child’s first step, a First 5K Race is a big step in life.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, you deserve a finisher’s medal when you finish your first 5K road race.

As a runner, you know how much work and determination it takes to run your first 5k race. As a parent, spouse or friend, you know how hard your runner has worked to prepare.

Order a 2021 My First 5K medal

Order a 2022 My First 5K medal

Most races award medals to the top three male and female finishers. Some also award medals to the top finishers by age group.

Make sure your runner brings home a medal regardless of how they finish the race.

5K Medals for First Time Runners

Why don’t all races award medals for all finishers?

Most 5K races are fundraisers and race directors have to watch their budget.

Race directors have to pay for timing services, police details, insurance and usually race shirts.

Most 5K races are raising money for one organization or another. It may be for the local PTO, medical research or to assistant veterans and other people in need.

Fundraisers need to raise funds

When a non-profit commits staff and resources to produce a 5K road race, they need to have something to show for their expenditure of time and funds.

In a 2005 Cool Running article Boston Marathon Race Director, Dave McGillivray, gave an example of the costs to produce the average 500 person race. He included everything from t-shirts to toilets and came up with a cost per runner of $20.30.

In 2005 the average 5K entry fee was $20.00. Sixteen years later, the average 5K fee is $30.00.

Dave’s estimate did not include awards or finishers medals, and his race still lost 30¢ per runner.

The $30 collected per runner today doesn’t go much further than the $20 collected in 2005. In addition to inflation, races have become bigger productions and most provide tech shirts instead of cotton.

Dave’s 2005 article indicates that not providing a finishers medal is a long-standing practice. So even in 2005 race directors felt the need to eliminate this expense.

Races need runners to be successful

Races need runners to show up in order to be successful and that means keeping registration fees as low as possible.

Runners expect a well organized race with water, some food and a nice shirt. If a race cuts corners, runners will notice and may not return the next year.

Recent surveys indicate that experienced runners would rather keep entry fees low and not receive a medal. Many would go without a shirt to keep fees low.

Race directors know this. Some races do not include a shirt with registration and most have eliminated a medal for all runners.

Millions of new 5K runners each year

Each year, millions of people lace up for their first 5K road race. For them every step along the way has been an adventure in the journey to their first race.

We all grew up watching medal ceremonies at The Olympics and The Boston Marathon. Every first time runner wants their personal moment of victory.

The My First 5K medal allows all first time runners to get a special medal for their first race.

First time 5K runners like medals

First time runners have seen the medal ceremonies and felt the excitement. They want to feel that excitement for themselves.

For race directors, providing a medal, keeping fees low and raising funds is a challenge.

Omni Running offers the MyFirst5K medal for your runner

My First 5K medal, runners medalThis is a limited edition finisher’s medal designed exclusively for first time 5K runners.

You can order one for your runner or for a group of runners. Just click any image on this page to place your order.

Race directors can add the medal as a registration option for runners. The medal is a great fundraiser with little effort on your part. Race Director Details.

Each medal comes with a bib sticker

my first 5k, 5k sticker,1st 5k race, races for kids

Let me know if you have questions.

info at


17th Annual Melrose Run for Women Recap

We had a beautiful day on Sunday for the 17th Annual Melrose Run for Women.

Each year this race gets a little bigger. Last year we had 1,003 registrations, and 943 runners and walkers finished the race. This year we had just under 1,100 registrations and 1,023 finishers. Liz Tassinari, the race committee and all of the volunteers did a fantastic job. The race was well publicized and well organized.

Mother's Day Race, melrose run for women
Melrose Run for Women 3.5 mile run and walk

It was great to see mothers and their daughters come to pick up their numbers on race day. There were women with their moms and mothers with their young children. It was great to see the excitement of the young kids picking up their numbers. For many of them this was probably their first race, and they were doing it with their mom! What a great day to create family memories.

Everyone was excited about the race and there were smiles all around.

Dave Hayes did a great job with the t-shirt design as he always does. We had 800

Melrose Run for Women, mothers day
2014 MRFW race shirt

shirts for our runners so a few late registrants had to go without. We also had many generous sponsors. The sponsors help cover the expenses of putting on a race like this and help the Melrose Running Club pass on more of the registration money to the groups we support.

Without our sponsors and the almost 1,100 runners who registered for the race, the Melrose Running Club would not be able to support these groups and the important work they do. As a club member, I thank all of you.

The Runners

There were 207 ladies in the 1-19 age bracket. Looking through the finishers list on cool running, I saw plenty of 7, 8 and 9 year olds. I also saw a 5 year old runner! Fantastic. Several children went along for the ride as mom pushed them in a running stroller.

We had five women in the 70-79 age bracket. Olga Anzuoni of Everett was first in this group and she is 78. Out of 1,023 runners she came in 475th. It’s great to see older people enjoying a race. None of the five women in the 70-79 bracket finished last either.

Here is a link to Paul Locke’s Flickr page for the race. These photos are at the 2 mile mark. Also from the 2 mile mark, these photos were taken every 3 seconds. Here are more race photos courtesy of Ted Tyler.

Here are the complete race results, posted on cool running. We had 50 mother/daughter teams this year. They are ranked by their combined finish times. As usual, there are some creative team names!

The Cause

The main beneficiary of the Melrose Run for women is the Melrose Action Against Violence. Their mission:

The mission of the Melrose Alliance Against Violence is to raise community awareness of domestic and teen dating violence, and to promote programs that work to reduce violence and encourage healthy relationships.

Our programs include community awareness activities, education and prevention programs in the schools, including bullying prevention, mentoring and peer leadership programs; and information, support, resource and referral services for victims, family members and the community at large.

The Melrose Running Club runs a Walk to Run program each year, and we always help and encourage new runners. This is part of our mission, and it changes lives. I’m proud of the work that we do to help people start running. But I have to say I am most proud of our support for MAAV. When I think of how our contribution helps women, girls and families in difficult situations, people who may have few resources and less hope, get the help and support they need I feel a great sense of pride.

Through the support of runners, local businesses and the community, we are able to help people make meaningful changes in their lives. Perhaps save a life. It is an honor to be associated with such an effort.

I would like to thank all of the runners, donors, volunteers and race staff for making this race such a huge success.

Well done my friends!


© 2014 anagelin