Overall Rating
Overall Rating (188 Reviews)
4.7
(188 Ratings)(188 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
2.8
SCENERY
3.6
PRODUCTION
4.7
SWAG
3.9
The California International Marathon (CIM) is a marathon organized by runners, for runners! CIM was founded in 1983 by the Sacramento Running Association (SRA), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our gently rolling, point-to-point, net downhill course has remained unchanged for 33 years, providing over 100,000 runners of all speeds–from first-timers to … MORE
Local Weather (Dec 07)
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H (°F) 56 65 46 63 63
L (°F) 41 38 32 51 50
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Recent reviews

    valaxamous FIRST-TIMER '18

    Chilly frigid morning. Warmed by the 3:45 pacers chants and comedy. Shedding layers. Grinding into a pace. Cheers to a Gu party. Finding a rhythm. A pick me up from … MORE

    Chilly frigid morning. Warmed by the 3:45 pacers chants and comedy. Shedding layers. Grinding into a pace. Cheers to a Gu party. Finding a rhythm. A pick me up from crowds of cheers. Steady hydration station saviors. Undulating hills. Finding deep calm. Push the pace. Goodbye pacers. Hello infinite energy. Oops I spilled my gu. Turbo button signs, hi fives for energy. Amazing time.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5

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    ltoncloud9 FIRST-TIMER '18

    I was very impressed with the organization of this race from the shuttle buses to the start line, the prompt start, 17 water stations and race festivities at the end. … MORE

    I was very impressed with the organization of this race from the shuttle buses to the start line, the prompt start, 17 water stations and race festivities at the end. The course is a net downhill point to point but buyer beware there is a substantial stretch of rolling hills. Overall it was a fun fast course and I would definitely recommend it.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5
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    marathongrrl FIRST-TIMER '18

    The people along the course are the highlight and very motivating. The scenery isn't special but the people make it so. Great support and plenty of water stops. Only complaint … MORE

    The people along the course are the highlight and very motivating. The scenery isn’t special but the people make it so. Great support and plenty of water stops. Only complaint is lack of food at end. Only food available to us slower runners was a cliff bar and bag of chips. (And bag of fried chips is really strange food to hand out post race).Fruit and hydration would’ve been good.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    2

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    Profile photo of Cristina Ramirez Torres
    cristinarr87 REPEAT RUNNER '18

    It is not a flat course, it is a faster course than other hilly races, but the first 20 miles have small rolling mounts, so if you are from flat-town … MORE

    It is not a flat course, it is a faster course than other hilly races, but the first 20 miles have small rolling mounts, so if you are from flat-town Davis or Dixon, be sure to include a few overpasses repeats in your training. The last 4 miles are flat and fun!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    Zanrok REPEAT RUNNER '18

    Logistically this is one of the best run races I have done. I have run 17 marathons, and this race has always exceeded my expectations. From the expo, start line, … MORE

    Logistically this is one of the best run races I have done. I have run 17 marathons, and this race has always exceeded my expectations. From the expo, start line, and finish line. It’s all done well.
    Getting to the start is super easy, buses pick you up nearby the designated hotels, you can stay on to keep warm or get off and wait around. Once off the bus you have about a half mile of porta potties to pick from. The ONLY race I know that does not have lines to use the bathroom and something others should follow!
    The course is rolling hills for the first 20 miles, with an overall net downhill. The last 6 are much flatter than the previous 20, so be mentally prepared to work harder.
    The finish line. One of the only races I know that has separate finish corrals for women and men. A nice feature. They started giving out disposable jackets this year, instead of those stupid mylar blankets. I LOOOOVE this. The jacket was great, it had a zipper and kept runners warm when they finished. And the best part is you can use it on a future race as a throw-away. Perfect! Medal this year and in past years has always been well done, large and heavy!
    As far as improving the race, I think it could benefit from a type of pace corral system. It was difficult for me to make it up to my desired pace at the start because of so many runners bunching up and not in correct spots. I would suggest moving the pace groups back further from each other so people don’t bunch up so much. Then 1 minute before the start.. have them move up. This way, you can still keep the no corral system, but help spread the runners.

    I recommend this race for sure, its fantastic to do if you live in a warmer climate as you can avoid training in the hottest months of the year. And if you are crazy like most people, you can run an October marathon and also run this with enough recovery in between.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    My Report
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    3
    SWAG
    4
    My Media

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    Profile photo of Barbara Rausch
    noneleft FIRST-TIMER '18

    Last year, I ran the two-person relay. I had a bad case of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) when my friends ran this marathon, so I was reeled in with … MORE

    Last year, I ran the two-person relay. I had a bad case of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) when my friends ran this marathon, so I was reeled in with the early bird cheap price last year. This course is a point to point and starts near the Folsom Dam and ends at the Capital Building in Sacramento. The course is a “Net Downhill”, I ran the first two legs of the relay last year, so I knew that the first 13.5 miles had rolling hills. The second half of the race was pretty much flat. There were plenty of aid stations. I carried a 16 oz hand-held bottle and was never without of water. There was Nuun drink and Clif bars and gel on course. Plenty of cheering locals from the communities.
    Leading up to the race, there was good communication about the expo and race day information.
    The only issue that I encountered was that our bus driver that was taking us to the start, GOT LOST TWICE!!!!! She had no idea where to go and several of the runners on the bus had to provide navigation for her. We eventually arrived at the start at 6:40am which left us 20 minutes to take care of business. It took over an hour to get to the start. The lines were long for the toilets. These bus drivers need to know where they are going. It was ridiculous.
    The medal was great and I LOVED the pullover long sleeve.
    Despite the bus situation, it was a fun and enjoyable experience. I even set a PR and shave 4 minutes and 9 seconds off my marathon time.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
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    5

    2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

    M_Sohaskey Dec 13, 2018 at 1:28pm

    Congrats on the PR despite the bus shenanigans, Barbara! Funny (or not so funny) thing is, the same thing happened to a couple of friends when I first ran CIM in 2011... they ended up arriving 5 minutes before the start, just in time to drop their bags and run. So 20 minutes almost sounds like a luxury! In CIM's defense, the same thing has happened to me at a couple of other races where buses were involved, so this certainly isn't specific to CIM. Luckily it sounds like the rest of the race was awesome and you were able to enjoy the day — and a shiny new PR certainly helps. Isn't it amazing to think you can now go out and run a marathon without a second thought? Great way to (almost) cap an awesome running year for you. And thanks for another thoughtful review!

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    noneleft Dec 13, 2018 at 4:19pm

    I try not to think twice about signing up for a marathon. If I did, I wouldn’t do another one. “Show up and Run.” that’s my motto.

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    M_Sohaskey Dec 13, 2018 at 4:29pm

    Love it! I definitely think you’re on to something there. 😊

     
    JohnT REPEAT RUNNER '18

    This race is definitely an opportunity for a PR and BQ. It's a fast race with rollers which is nice. The course spectators and volunteers are absolutely amazing! I look … MORE

    This race is definitely an opportunity for a PR and BQ. It’s a fast race with rollers which is nice. The course spectators and volunteers are absolutely amazing! I look forward to this race each year. A great way to end the race year on a successful and fun note!

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    5

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    RacerKN REPEAT RUNNER '18

    Second year running this marathon. I ran with a friend who had a broken hand and had had surgery the Tuesday before the race, so we took it easy. The … MORE

    Second year running this marathon. I ran with a friend who had a broken hand and had had surgery the Tuesday before the race, so we took it easy. The production of the race was great EXCEPT…
    Our bus got lost!!!! The driver apparently is the only human being on earth who does not have a device with GPS or navigation. Runners on the bus had to direct the bus driver to how to get to the start line. We arrive only 20 minutes before the start of the race even though we showed up for the bus right on time. By the time I got through the porta potty line, the race had already started.
    Because I was not trying to PR or BQ, I took it in stride and started with the runners who were hoping to just finish. But the situation would have been entirely different if I had wanted to BQ, it would have stressed the heck out of me.
    Race organizers – please give bus drivers directions and/or a resource to navigate. Sadly, this is not the first race where the driver did not know where they were going. Seriously? Is this 1969?

    DIFFICULTY
    1
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    5
    SCENERY
    4
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    4

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    joyfulrunner REPEAT RUNNER '18

    CIM is very well organized for a 15,000 participant race, and you can tell a lot of detail and forethought was considered with runners in mind. Transportation to the start … MORE

    CIM is very well organized for a 15,000 participant race, and you can tell a lot of detail and forethought was considered
    with runners in mind. Transportation to the start line was a breeze from Folsom, and if you stay with a CIM-Folsom hotel partner, you have access to a warming tent and private porto’s. Weather was ideal for a fast race — low 40s, clear, little to no headwind. Coming from Chicago with cold and rainy conditions, you could not ask for better temperature. Rolling hills through Mile 20 but they were hardly noticeable, it actually broke up the monotony of the race. Plenty of water stations and crowd support throughout — it’s not NYC level but way more consistent throughout the course compared with other city races (I’m thinking SF specifically). If you’re looking for a
    fast PR, BQ, or OTQ this race is a great option for December. Thanks CIM!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    2
    My Media

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    Profile photo of Nicolas Dewalque
    dewalquen FIRST-TIMER '18

    I recommend the Capitol Challenge :) The 5 km on Saturday Morning and the Full Marathon on Sunday : you will get 3 medals 2 t-shirts and amazing souvenirs ! … MORE

    I recommend the Capitol Challenge 🙂 The 5 km on Saturday Morning and the Full Marathon on Sunday : you will get 3 medals 2 t-shirts and amazing souvenirs !
    Took part of the USABA Blind/Visually Impaired Championship and qualified for Boston.
    The race week-end atmopshere is very friendly and well organised.
    The course is pretty straight and fast with some up and down.

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    My Media

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    billym FIRST-TIMER '18

    This is a nice course (great volunteers and fan support!), with great potential for a fast finish. It is much slower than flat courses like Chicago because of all the … MORE

    This is a nice course (great volunteers and fan support!), with great potential for a fast finish. It is much slower than flat courses like Chicago because of all the hills, but the weather was nearly perfect, and appears to be that way fairly often. The great weather is the key to the fast times!!! I’ll take 45F and some hills over 60F and flat any day. There were only 2 drawbacks to this race. #1. Not enough Port-Os!!! It is absurd to have to wait in line for 25min to go to the bathroom before a race like this. Is making it so difficult a ploy to get more people to sign up for “VIP” treatment? I was unable to properly warm up for this race because of the long lines and the next issue. #2. The “self-seeded” start. It’s pretty cool that there are so many people trying to qualify for the Trials, but that automatically means that regular old guys who run in the 2:30s are going to be stuck behind ~100 runners shooting for low 2:40s. That would be no problem At All (even fun), but then you get ~500 3-hour runners who feel they need to line up right behind the elites. I was pretty trapped for the first 5K and unable to take advantage of some of the nice downhills near the beginning of the race. This race has more sub 2:45 runners than Chicago, and Chicago desperately needs a 2:45 corral. This race needs it even more (and needs corrals in general – there are just too many people to go without them). Other than that, this is well-organized race and the people supporting it were absolutely awesome. Gear check was smooth. Course was nice – hillier than I expected, but more scenic than I expected as well. Easy expo, good runner drop-off or bus choices, nice people in general, and superb aid station volunteers!!!!

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    Sama FIRST-TIMER '18

    I would say from being a first timer, very well informed, easy communications with the mentors. Every information was there. Course was great and lot of local community support. Lots … MORE

    I would say from being a first timer, very well informed, easy communications with the mentors. Every information was there. Course was great and lot of local community support. Lots of aid station and tracker’s helped friends. Expo was mind blowing with great prices. Merchandise was just great. Love the swag. Definitely running in 2019. Only wished if they had package deal to buy the pictures. For being a first timer I would have purchased all of them.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5

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    Profile photo of Mark Boyter
    mjboyter FIRST-TIMER '18

    This race was wonderful. Great spectators, great finish logistics, great starting corral logistics. Lots of water/support stations, and a huge medal at the end. I loved this race. It wasn't … MORE

    This race was wonderful. Great spectators, great finish logistics, great starting corral logistics. Lots of water/support stations, and a huge medal at the end. I loved this race. It wasn’t as hilly as I feared, and the flat at the end is flat. Sacramento and Folsom outdid themselves. Thank you.

    I would run this race again in a heartbeat.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
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    3

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    Profile photo of Yared Negussie
    ynegussie REPEAT RUNNER '18

    I ran this twice. The first time it was rainy, but it was still beautiful race. The overall production was great. Plenty fuel stations and they are very accommodating to … MORE

    I ran this twice. The first time it was rainy, but it was still beautiful race. The overall production was great. Plenty fuel stations and they are very accommodating to spectators. The whole process was easy. The course is considered one of the best places to qualify for Boston. That means you can train on harder, hilly courses then come here and qualify. I improved my time by 28 minutes. I recommend anyone who wants to try to qualify for Boston to try it.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    4

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    Lani REPEAT RUNNER '18

    The race starts in Folsom and finishes in downtown Sacramento, by the state capitol. This is a point-to-point course with a net elevation loss. There are a few uphill portions, … MORE

    The race starts in Folsom and finishes in downtown Sacramento, by the state capitol. This is a point-to-point course with a net elevation loss. There are a few uphill portions, but nothing steep. The race offers free shuttle bus service from Sacramento to the start line. The USATF-certified course has minimal turns and is mostly on larger streets, making it a fast course.

    PROS:

    – Fast course
    – Minimal number of turns on the course
    – Most of the course is on wider boulevards; no bottlenecks
    – Live runner tracking
    – Lots of timing mats
    – Mileage markers at every mile, plus at key kilometer distances
    – Digital clock timer at many distance markers
    – Great organization
    – Very large finish area
    – Free shuttles to start line
    – Relay option for those wanting a shorter distance, or want a taste of the race without the full distance
    – Chance to see some really fast elite runners (prize purse offered)
    – Lots of race merchandise available for sale
    – Very large race expo for some good shopping opportunities

    CONS:

    – Some bus drivers can get lost
    – The 6:30 cutoff time may be too fast for slower runners/walkers
    – Some aid station volunteers crowded into the course and make running through difficult
    – Some areas in the last mile of the finish line have no crowd control and make running through difficult

    DIFFICULTY
    4
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    5
    SCENERY
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    4 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

    M_Sohaskey Dec 05, 2018 at 6:54pm

    And an awesome place to set a new marathon PR, as you showed on Sunday! Congrats on the PR/BQ Lani 🙌, and thanks for another excellent review!

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    chelseahill2011 FIRST-TIMER '18

    Great expo with reasonable priced hotels across the street. Easy access to buses for start line. SO many port a potties at start and they allow you to stay on … MORE

    Great expo with reasonable priced hotels across the street. Easy access to buses for start line. SO many port a potties at start and they allow you to stay on the bus until right before the start to stay warm. Not continuous crowd support but crowd increases further into the race. Volunteers were great at the water stops. Pacers were awesome as well.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5

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    evie.montes FIRST-TIMER '18

    Had fun and the scenery was nice. First half of the marathon had many small rolling hills but they weren't too difficult. Awesome spectators and volunteers! I already signed up … MORE

    Had fun and the scenery was nice. First half of the marathon had many small rolling hills but they weren’t too difficult. Awesome spectators and volunteers! I already signed up for next year’s race! Hopefully I can crush this year’s time.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    4
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    fabe46 FIRST-TIMER '18

    The 7am start puts you in a must layer situation. Not enough portable pottys at start line. Bus to startline was over half hour late with little communication from CIM … MORE

    The 7am start puts you in a must layer situation. Not enough portable pottys at start line. Bus to startline was over half hour late with little communication from CIM coordinator on site. With the bad out the way. The hills were subtle with mostly downhill throughout run. Good turn out from the community supporting the runners, with exception from drivers not expecting road closures. Recommend shades. I live in Sacramento and drive on a good portion of the course so I wouldn’t consider it a scenic course. The finish line area was real good. Excellent cup of soup at the end..yummm.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
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    4
    SCENERY
    3
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    4

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    mountainmon FIRST-TIMER '18

    I wasn't expecting to participate this year, but jumped on the opportunity when it arose. Most of the course was new to me, but I enjoyed the scenery and the … MORE

    I wasn’t expecting to participate this year, but jumped on the opportunity when it arose. Most of the course was new to me, but I enjoyed the scenery and the extremely positive vibe from fellow runners, volunteers, and spectators. The two-person relay medals that fit together were really neat. I’d do this race again!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    5

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    amyecimino REPEAT RUNNER '18

    I watched my dad run this race 8 times as a little girl, and it is so much fun to split the race with him in the 2 man relay. … MORE

    I watched my dad run this race 8 times as a little girl, and it is so much fun to split the race with him in the 2 man relay. The course is smooth and speedy. The rolling hills in the middle miles aren’t too challenging and the support along the downtown streets encourages you to finish the race. Sacramento spirit spurs runners to the finish line with signage and cheering all along the route.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
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    4
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