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Clint Burleson runs a cross country marathon series business from his RV putting on events in 49 states so far.

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Running Marathons In 50 States 

Clint Burleson & His Business Mainly Marathons Organizes Races In Each State While Traveling The Country In A 2013 34’ Fuzion Toy Hauler

Watching The Finish Line At A Race In Eagle Nest [Photo Credit: Jared Langenegger]

After retiring, Clint Burleson, made it a goal of his to attempt running a marathon in all 50 states.  This goal has blossomed into a full-time business taking he and his wife Hannelore across the nation in their RV currently putting on events in 49 states with plans to be in Alaska in 2018. 

“After I retired, I took a couple of road trips out east camping and trying to run as many marathons in states out there as I could.  This can be expensive and time consuming.  In my trip to New England, I was gone for a month and ran in six states.  This got me thinking of whether there might be a better way to go about this”, said Clint Burleson, owner of Mainly Marathons.

“I had been race director for the White Sands/Alamogordo Marathon, so I knew what was involved in organizing runs, and driving from my home in Las Cruces to Duluth, MN, I was familiar with the portion of US Highway 54 that passes from New Mexico into Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas in about 150 miles.  Including the SE corner of Colorado gave us five states in close proximity.  In March of 2013, my wife and I organized the first multi-state marathon series running in those five states in five days and we averaged about 100 runners per day including marathoners and half-marathoners”, explained Clint.  

Let The Marathon Begin At Ute Lake, New Mexico [Photo Credit: Jared Langenegger]
Clint & Hannelore Burleson, founders of Mainly Marathons [Photo Credit: Clint Burleson]

When the Burleson’s began their business, they hosted races in ten states and were traveling in a 16’ travel trailer.  “For that first series, we had picked up a 1970 16’ Fireball travel trailer, quite cute with a nice interior layout, but too small for my wife and I, two good sized dogs, and all of the gear and supplies we needed to carry.  We towed it with my pickup and each evening, we had to partially empty the trailer into the front seat of the truck so we would have room to cook and sleep”, recalled Clint. 

Since the first series, the Burleson’s business has grown substantially traveling to all of the lower 48 and Canada.  They plan to live in their RV for approximately 150 days this year.  The expanded travel and growth of the business has led to an upgrade in their mobile headquarters.  “After the first series, we purchased a 2013 34’ Fuzion toy hauler.  We converted the back garage into a grocery store for the runners, with some storage for gear.  We added shelf units, hanging baskets and a chest freezer.  The living space has two slide outs and works out well”, explained Clint.  The storage area was not the only modification made to the trailer.  “This business is quite computer intensive, and my wife and I each have an office at home and had to remove the couch from the RV and build a desk there for an office while on the road.  Even when the races are going on, the office work continues”, stated Clint. 

Running a cross country marathon series is not without its challenges.  When asked about the most interesting thing that has happened in their travels Clint told of the hazards of pulling a 34’ toy hauler cross country.  “I can’t say we’ve had one big interesting event in our travels, but I suspect my wife found interest in the time I tore down a stop sign while rounding an intersection, then later caught a gas pump hose with the far corner of the trailer and removed it from the pump”, joked Clint.  “She has had to stop traffic so I could back out of gas stations, and once while following a GPS to a campground in Pennsylvania, we encountered a one lane bridge with sharp ninety degree turns at each end.”

Mainly Marathon Runners On A Race [Photo Credit: Clint Burleson]
Stocking Up On Food Supplies For A Marathon [Photo Credit: Clint Burleson]
Racers Take Off For A Marathon During Mainly Marathons Event [Photo Credit: Clint Burleson]

Clint and Hanne aren’t the only ones who get to the Mainly Marathon races in an RV.  “We usually have 5-10 who are also RVing, these range from small trailers to huge motor homes.  We have one fellow, Jim Simpson, who with his lady friend travels to almost all of our races living in a camper on the back of his pickup truck.  Four years ago, Jim was the first runner to reach 1,000 marathons and he hit this at age 70.  He also has the nickname Walmart Man, because in his travels to races he often camps over 200 nights per year in Walmart parking lots”, said Clint. 

Clint’s races have attracted a loyal following in the running community and have given him the opportunity to meet some amazing people.  “I think the most interesting is Larry Macon, who at age 72 is still a practicing attorney from San Antonio, he is the current leader for total marathons.  He has over 1,930 marathons to his credit and will top 2,000 in late 2017.  He holds many marathoning records including the most in a year when he finished 255 in 2014.  Larry will often combine our seven-day series with other races before and after making a nine-day streak”, stated Clint. 

Mainly Marathons focuses not only on multi-state races, but also on attracting beginning runners.  There are no time limits on their races and they give out prizes honoring last place.  With the success of their business model, Clint has plans to keep the races going.  “We started three new series in 2017 and will have two more new ones for next year.  The business is still growing and very exciting.  As customers runners are a great bunch and quite enjoyable to be around”, said Clint.  


Jared Langenegger

A graduate of New Mexico State University with B.S. in wildlife and fisheries science, Jared spent 15 years working in fisheries and parks management. He enjoys camping, fishing, hunting, painting, and wood working.

Hacienda RV and Rally Resort

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Hacienda RV & Rally Resort is conveniently located immediately off of I -10, at exit 140 in Las Cruces, NM. The elevation is app. 3900 feet and our average winter temperatures are 58 -65 degrees during the day and the lower 30’s to high 20’s at night. 


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