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@jimmynam

Novato, CA Raving since 2014 active 7 months, 1 week ago

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My races

Organize, track & review your races and personal bests here.

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Half Marathon

Marathon

Ultramarathon

(Marathon &/or Ultra) + Half

Marathon + Ultra

Other

Personal Bests (3)

Race Distance Location Date Result
197 Mile Relay Timberline Lodge, OR Aug 28, 2015 27:11:00
Marathon Hopkinton, MA Apr 20, 2015 3:22:34
Half Marathon Weott, CA May 7, 2017 1:35:39

Future Races (0)

Race Distance Location Date Paid

Past Races (7)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
Marathon Huntington Beach, CA Feb 4, 2018 3:31:00
Half Marathon Weott, CA May 7, 2017 1:35:39
Marathon Ojai, CA May 29, 2016 3:45:00
197 Mile Relay Timberline Lodge, OR Aug 28, 2015 27:11:00
Marathon Hopkinton, MA Apr 20, 2015 3:22:34
200 Mile Relay San Francisco, CA Sep 19, 2014
Marathon Folsom, CA 2013

My Raves

Surf City Marathon & Half Marathon

Surf City Marathon & Half Marathon

The course is flat with the exception of a little spur out to the park. The temperature starts to warm up as the day goes on, but who doesn't need … MORE

The course is flat with the exception of a little spur out to the park. The temperature starts to warm up as the day goes on, but who doesn’t need an excuse to slow down during those finishing miles. The water stations were great – offering water and Nuun in different cups, so you wouldn’t grab the wrong beverage. And Clif product was on the course at a couple of spots. We stayed at the host hotel and just walked to the start in the morning – it was a little more expensive, but it was nice not having to get up earlier and drive and park. It is also nice to grab a shower after the race and enjoy the local restaurants and bars for a proper recovery. Originally, we were going to stay at a hotel closer to a shuttle stop, but we changed our minds at the last minute. I’m glad we did. As far as the running goes, it seemed like a lot of people participating in this Race-cation were more interested in having a good time with friends and family than setting PRs. Nothing wrong with that, but it follows the mellow and laid back vibe that goes with the beach. I would totally race here again.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

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Avenue of the Giants Marathon & Half Marathon

Avenue of the Giants Marathon & Half Marathon

The community really comes out to support this race. The volunteers were all so friendly and welcoming. You could tell that the race was well organized by racers - the … MORE

The community really comes out to support this race. The volunteers were all so friendly and welcoming. You could tell that the race was well organized by racers – the mile markers were clearly marked, the race started on time, and results were posted quickly.
Because of the remote location, there are limited choices for lodging. But I think the later start times accommodate a little extra drive time to the starting staging area. There is plenty of nearby parking just an easy 5-10 minute walk to the start.
The course is very fast – plenty of shade and just one slowing turn at the halfway turnaround. The course rolls in elevation. And there are some gentle meandering turns along the river. The road does slope a bit to the side for drainage and the centerline is a bit rough. But the racers spread out and thin out quickly and it is easy to navigate the course. With few racers there are few to draft behind.
We previewed the course beforehand and cycled the full marathon course – the first half of the marathon was quite gravelly and filled with potholes. I imagine that the Winter rains were tough on the roads. The second half of the marathon (the half-Mary course) was on better pavement.
It’s a bit of a trek from the SF Bay Area, but if you are looking for a relaxing run-cation give the Avenue of the Giants a go.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

 

Mountains 2 Beach Marathon & Half Marathon

Mountains 2 Beach Marathon & Half Marathon

I liked looping around Ojai for the start of the race, before the fast finish to the beach. I wonder if there is any way to map the course and … MORE

I liked looping around Ojai for the start of the race, before the fast finish to the beach. I wonder if there is any way to map the course and add another mile or two up in Ojai so that you could finish as soon as you roll into the beach. Mile 25 was brutal – that little rise heading South was a killer. Or it could be that it is mile 25 and you should expect a little pain.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
4

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Hood to Coast Relay

Hood to Coast Relay

Get a group of reliable running buddies together for a team relay - only the non-flakey need apply. There are a number of these events hosted all over the country. … MORE

Get a group of reliable running buddies together for a team relay – only the non-flakey need apply. There are a number of these events hosted all over the country. I’ve always come away feeling more motivated to keep up my running fitness after participating in these events.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

As someone who just barely qualified for the Boston Marathon, this race was a long time coming. With the months of training before my qualifier, it was just about two … MORE

As someone who just barely qualified for the Boston Marathon, this race was a long time coming. With the months of training before my qualifier, it was just about two years since I started seriously planning on participating in this race. Boston and the neighboring towns really embraces the race and its participants. They make you feel like a running rockstar. I would definitely return to the event. Here are some of my comments and observations:

So many runners, it can be overwhelming. The race staging area is so crowded with runners and their support team. With the qualifying process, it seems that there are more fit athletes preparing for the race. And the way they assign race bibs based on qualifying times, everyone seems to be sizing people up based on the color and number of their bib. The official adidas windbreaker is worn all over the place – the whole hubbub of the Expo was a bit much for me. If I return, I would probably just order my official adidas merchandise online and skip the lines at the expo.
Getting to the race start in Hopkinton seemed to work well. It just requires people to start leaving Boston on buses as much as four hours before the race. You just really need to plan your nutrition and hydration. The cold weather this year also required you to prepare for sitting for a few hours before the race in the outdoors. They had nutrition and hydration available along with a few hundred honey huts – with nervous runners waiting in line about 10 deep.
Once they called your wave to the start corral, it was about a half mile walk to the line. People would start surrendering their warm clothes and water bottles. Hold on to your gear as long as possible, but once the wave starts you will cross the start line in minutes. There are 8 corrals in each wave. It took less than 5 minutes to get 7500 runners passed the start.
With everyone around me with similar qualifying times, it just seemed like there were always runners around me. And when I started fading in the last few miles, I felt like hundreds of people were passing me. It was nice having mile markers, kilometer markers and it was always clear when you were entering a new town. You just knew you were making progress towards the finish.
The aid stations were set up first on the right side of the road and further up on the left side.
And it was always Gatorade in the front and Water in the back. This allowed for less jostling for hydration. There was only one stop at mile 17 for Clif gels. But some regular spectators were offering orange slices along the course. And there were about three stations that were offering Vaseline.
After the race, you get your water, medallion, space blanket poncho and snack bag. Walking across the Boston Common to pickup your after race gear bag and catch the T back to our rented flat in Cambridge was the toughest segment of the race. It was brutal, it looked like Zombie-land with walkers moving slowly across the park. It took me 40 minutes to cover that 1/2 mile stretch – so painfully cold. The T was offering free rides for the racers. And walking back to the flat, people in cars would stop and offer congratulations. Although, it would have been better if they offered me a ride. Anyway, just a great experience. But I think running the marathon with my wife and friends just made the event more like a holiday. I can’t wait to go back again with more of my friends.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

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Ragnar Relay Napa Valley

Ragnar Relay Napa Valley

I've participated in this Napa event every year it has been held, so there must be some reason for coming back. Running is an individual event, but relays make it … MORE

I’ve participated in this Napa event every year it has been held, so there must be some reason for coming back. Running is an individual event, but relays make it a team activity. Part of being on a team is not wanting to let your fellow mates down, so some of our fastest individual splits are achieved during the relay.
The relay is more about participation and looks more like a parade than a race. Teams dress up in costume, and I would say that most participants are not that competitive about the race. At one exchange, the runners had a 30 second conversation before the next runner jogged off. The average team will finish the race in a 10min/mile+ average pace.
As far as race support and logistics, I would say that participants should prepare to support themselves for the entire race. While there are water stations at the exchange points and in the middle of long legs, there are no guarantees on the level of support. My only comment and complaint about the race is that the race organizers should allow for runner escorts during the nighttime legs – some of the legs go through some dark areas. And it would be great to have a car or cyclist nearby. I understand that congestion might be an issue, but safety should be the number one priority. One of our runners stumbled through a little homeless camp.
The course has never been exactly the same in the four years it has been held – adaptations are made based on road conditions and improvements to the exchange locations. There is a lot of variance in terms of the difficulty of each of the 36 legs, so you can set your team lineup accordingly. This allows you to include novice runners with advanced runners on the same team. But again, this is not a real competitive race.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
2

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California International Marathon (CIM)

California International Marathon (CIM)

Just trying to qualify for Boston, and the December race date was ideal for the training calendar. I had seen the race course the previous year, so I was familiar … MORE

Just trying to qualify for Boston, and the December race date was ideal for the training calendar. I had seen the race course the previous year, so I was familiar with the rolling nature of the course. It might be net downhill, but I would be curious how much vertical distance is covered during the run.
The water stations were adequate, I didn’t carry water with me. There was ice on the road from spilled water at the aid stations in the morning. It was freezing before the start, and a few runners went down around me. I carried my own energy gels in case I couldn’t get some on the course. There were plenty of honey huts at the start, but getting to the starting point was a bit of a bother. Do you ride the bus or count on your crew to get you to the start on time? Pros and cons to both, but we had our crew shuttle us to the start.
I am glad that we stayed at the finish, and the Marriott Downtown honored a later checkout. Upon the finish of the race it was a short walk back to the hotel for a shower. I skipped the finish line snacks, grabbed a coke and mylar wrap and walked back to the hotel so I could grab a warm shower.
The best part of the race was the pace team, while I can’t speak for all the pacers. 3:25 Charlie was awesome, he offered some runners saltcaps, grabbed water for some others and invited runners to pass him for a heroic finish around mile22. I laughed and cried inside. I increased the perceived level of exertion to the MAX for the last couple of miles, which probably only increased my speed by about 10 s./mile. But once you get on L Street, you know you have to get all the way down to 8th Street. And when you see that you are on 20-something street, you know that you are still a long way from the finish.
BOTTOM LINE – great pacers/stay downtown

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
2
SWAG
2

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