So here are some tips and insights into choosing a race that is right for you, and also finding out whats important to take into considerations.
So location is always important, where do you want to race, destination race somewhere close by, another country etc. Logistics are required for nearly any race even if its in your hometown, ease of getting there, access etc. So once you decide where you might like to race, the next thing is What.
What race do you want to do….with so many different types out there it is good to narrow down to a certain type, do you want to run a half marathon, full, 10 km, shorter than that, triatlon, duathlon, mud run etc you get the picture. So once you decide on a type of race, you can head to the computer and look up all the races in your desired location. Also notice boards at starbucks and jamba juice and places sometimes have local race notice pinned up so check there too.Some websites that are good are http://www.halfmarathons.net and www.marathons.ahotu.com
You must choose a distance or race that suits you and that is within your goal range, so take into account how far away your race is, how much time you are currently alotting for training, your work load, family load and any other factors that affect how much time and effort and dedication you can put in.
Next how much can you afford, racing is a very lucritive idustry these days, and can end up being expensive so heres a few tips for the thrifty.
Signing up early to get early bird specials is a good technique. Smaller races tend to be less expensive so look local races in desired areas.
Also google discount codes for certain races, alot of times there are some 10 or 15 percent off etc http://www.retailmenot.com is a good website for this. Check into if you refer a friend etc discounts. Also some races if you volunteer at some of their races then you get a free entry, its fun your helping other runners and learning along the way, plus a free race entry-done and done.
check out http://www.coastaltrailruns.com/ if your in the SF bay area, there just one group of great people. I am sure however everywhere has something similar.
Another thing thats important after deciding on what distance and kind of race, where and budget is your goals and what you want to get out of the race.
Do you want to PR, is swag important to you, are big crowds intimidating, do you like to run/race alone or with a group and if so what groups are out there or online to aid you in achieving your goals.
Then train and head to you race. Gear and all that is another entirely different blog altogether, I hope these helped and feel free to add any more in the comment section.