Sunday, December 18, 2005

San Francisco Holiday Run - 2.5M

This race was held on the Embarcadero at noon, in a huge downpour. I ran the short course of 2.5 miles and came in second in 17:29. It was my final and 51st race of the year.

Christmas Classic 5K

Another race in Golden Gate Park, on the roads around Stow Lake just like a couple other races held by People Events. Finished in around 21 minutes. First time running that slow in a long time, but I was definitely fatigued from Saturday's trail run and the mile race beforehand. This was my fiftieth race though, so I was excited to get it done.

Miracle Mile

This is a one mile race through Golden Gate Park, held every year along with the Christmas Classic. It was raining in San Francisco this morning. Still a little beat from yesterday's race, I ran a 5:51 mile. Hard to accept as I think of myself as a 5:30 miler. But there were two more races to do this rainy Sunday.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Muir Beach Trail Race - 11km

This is another one of Pacific Coast Trail Runs great events in beautiful venues. It was quite cold and raining a little at the start of the race. I saw Chuck Wilson, a very experienced ultramarathoner, who used to work for me for several years ago. Its fair to say that he got me excited about the appeal of trail running. He congratulated me on last week's win and course record. I was disappointed to not see him in this race's results later for the 33k which he signed up for.

We walked down towards the Beach and headed up the Coastal Trail. There's a quick climb right at the Start. I wanted to hang with the leader and contend to win. But I just couldn't keep up with him. The attempt to do that probably cost me several minutes overall as I was spent just a mile into the race. I slowed and enjoyed the beautiful views of the ocean on the Coastal Trail. This turned into the Tennessee Valley Road and went past the turn for the return trail on the way to the first aid station. The course then had us doubling back before turning right and heading up the Fox Trail/Coastal Fire Road. On the way back from the aid station to the turn, I saw a few people turn left onto the Fox Trail directly cutting perhaps a mile off of the distance.

On the last downhill mile back to the finish, I finally heard someone catching up to me. I had to kick it in gear to avoid being passed. I finished in 1:08 for seventh overall and apparently the first old geezer to come in.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Woodside Trail Race - 11km

I did this race last year and enjoyed it quite a bit, although it was past the end of the race season for me (I was too sensible to try to do 50 races then).

It being a fairly hilly short race, my goal was to win. I took off and stayed with the leaders most of the race. I was running with a guy in a white shirt named Neal for most of the uphill. Once I sensed him flagging I took off and tried to put some distance between us. When I got to the very top I turned around and he was not to be seen. I ran hard still most of the way down. But not seeing him for a while, I probably did slow down markedly for the last half mile. As I leisurely jogged up the open field to the finish I heard the crowd yelling "he's gaining on you!". I turned around and sure enough he was bearing down on me about 10 yards away. I kicked it in gear to avoid an ingnominious second place finish, winning in 54:02, beating last year's course record by 18 seconds. Josh will enjoy the First Place Finisher hat as one of his birthday presents on Tuesday.