Non-Binary Runner Policy

The non-binary division is a new option beginning in 2024 for adult and junior runners who identify as non-binary. The division will have its own results and receive the same awards as the existing adult (men & women) and junior (boys & girls) divisions.

The Mount Marathon Race has a long history of adjusting its policies and practices to correct inequities among women, juniors, older runners, age groups and lottery entrants.

The creation of the Non-Binary Runner Policy is the race committee’s first attempt to address inequities in the LGBTQ+ community and create a welcoming and inclusive space for them.

Here is the full policy:

March 15, 2024
Mount Marathon Race Non-Binary Runner Policy
-Approved February 26, 2024, by the Mount Marathon Race Committee
-Approved March 14, 2024, by the Seward Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors

The Mount Marathon Race has a long history of adjusting its policies and practices to correct inequities.

For example:

  • WOMEN — To more equally recognize women for their accomplishments, a separate women’s race was established in 1985. The order of the men’s and women’s races also began alternating annually in 2016 so women could experience the larger crowds of the mid-afternoon race.
  • JUNIORS — To promote equal recognition for girls, their results were published separately from the boys starting in the mid-1990s. Later, the allocated number of spots was equalized among girls and boys and separate lotteries were established.
  • GOLDEN RACERS — To encourage participation for older racers, the Golden Racer category was adopted in 2018. This allowed experienced racers older than 70 to complete a shorter course and retain their spot for the following year.
  • AGE GROUPS and LOTTERY — In 2019, the Top 50 Percent in Age Group rule replaced the Top 225 Overall requalification rule, which had favored younger runners. The new rule also dramatically increased lottery odds, giving additional opportunities to newcomers of all ages.

The creation of this Non-Binary Runner Policy is our first attempt to address inequities in the LGBTQ+ community and create a welcoming and inclusive space for them.

The race committee supports non-binary and transgender runners; any hateful or discriminatory behavior will not be tolerated. 

All parties are expected to participate in a manner that is honest, compassionate and respectful.

The race committee recognizes the imperfect nature of policy change; it will review and revise this policy as necessary moving forward.


The term non-binary is a gender identity that cannot be defined by the binary terms of “man” or “woman”; it refers to people who identify with a gender beyond the binary categories of male and female.

Within non-binary are people who fluctuate between genders (genderfluid or bi-gender), people who have no gender (agender) and more.

This policy is an effort to make more space for people who live outside the confines of binary gender identities.

Beginning in 2024, adults and juniors identifying as non-binary:

  • Can select non-binary as a category at priority or lottery registration.
  • Will be included in a new non-binary division that has its own results.
  • Will be recognized with the same awards (non-binary top 5 overall and non-binary age group top 5) as the binary divisions.
  • Non-binary adults will need to take part in the men’s or women’s waves and therefore must select participation in the men’s or women’s race (we acknowledge that non-binary runners having to participate in a binary division isn’t ideal, but currently see no better option). If preferred, they can be part of a separate non-binary wave within the men’s or women’s races. The race director will reach out to all non-binary runners to discuss this option.
  • Non-binary juniors will simply participate in the juniors’ race because boys and girls run together in a single wave.
  • If a lottery entrant, will be placed in the lottery corresponding to the race they selected.
  • Will requalify for priority registration following the existing rules of each race.
  • The non-binary division is expected to be selected in good faith and will be accepted at face value; it cannot be challenged by another party.

Potential Transgender Runner Policy

The race committee is also evaluating an inclusive Transgender Runner Policy; that item has been tabled as it gathers more information and feedback.

Opportunity to comment
The race committee welcomes constructive feedback; comments on the Non-Binary Runner Policy and/or a potential Transgender Runner Policy may be sent to race director Matias Saari at and/or race committee member Amy Haddow at