Tuesday, July 20, 2010

San Francisco Marathon: The Course

I haven't studied the course too much until the last couple of weeks. I was mostly concerned with the hills, but I've been intrigued now with the course. It's exciting to look at the course and know that I will be there soon, that I will traverse this path soon. And whether I'm in pain or cruising along, I know I will enjoy the scenery.

So here's the course, presented to you in bite-sized morsels.

Miles 1-5: This will be the fun part of the race. Just running along the water and past things like Pier 39 will be exciting. I'm unfamiliar with San Francisco but I believe this might be Fisherman's Wharf also. All five miles in this portion are within a stone's throw of the ocean, which should make for some pleasant conditions.

Miles 5-9.5: Easily the part I'm looking forward to the most. Not only will I run over the Pacific Ocean but I'll get to do so by running on the Golden Gate Bridge! It'll be an honor to run over a national landmark like that. I did hear, though, that last year the fog was so thick that you couldn't see the water from the bridge. That's fine, though. I'd love to see the scenery but I also know that fog means cool weather, and that's okay by me.

Miles 9.5-12: This is the descent into Golden Gate Park. It looks like some mileage through either residential areas.

Miles 13-20: Golden Gate Park. This part should be fun for a couple of reasons. First, the park itself should be a nice change of pace from the potentially dull miles before. And once I'm done with this park, I'll be close to being close to the finish :)

Also, there are a couple of sections that look like I'll be able to see other runners, those who are far ahead of me. But the coolest part of this section is this: the start line to the 2nd Half Marathon is right here, somewhere near Spreckels Lake. I'm hoping to be able to feed off the energy from some of the half-marathoners. If everything goes as planned, I should be right around the start line when one of their waves starts, possibly Wave 3 (which starts at 8:29). So I hope to definitely benefit from all of that excitement.

Miles 20-24.5: Somewhere in this section is LB's Wall. Not sure where it will pop up, but I'm guessing somewhere around Jackson Playground. Damn you, LB's Wall.

Miles 24.5-26.2: Glory within sights right here. We're back to the cool scenery (hopefully) or at least near the water. We do get to run past AT&T Park, home of the hated Giants, so I might give it a one-finger salute. This portion is what I've been training for, what I've fought and battled and sacrificed for. You can bet, even if LB's Wall is massive, that I will have reached deep down inside myself here and I will be giving everything I have to get the finish line. I might not have much left at this point, but dammit I'll be giving it all.

All in all, it looks like a great course with some fantastic scenery. And to think I'll have the honor of taking all of this in!


Anonymous said...


Amanda said...

I have the map printed out right in front of me right now and I just keep staring and it and ooing and ahhing :) I just can't believe I'm running across the entire span of the city. If your wall comes along just send it over and up out the sky scrapers.

Did you get my email? I know sometimes my emails have gone to spam.

Katie A. said...

The course is a blast! I wish I was in wave three now! But I'm in wave one, which means I will be waiting for you at the finish!!!!

Lisa said...

I'm looking forward to reading your race report as I'm sure some of the course is the same as the Nike Women's Marathon. I've never run across the Golden Gate Bridge but I'd like to at some point. Good luck!

Jill said...

ARGHHH! Now you got me rethinking the full...having a totally bad heel, I am seriously thinking of droppingn down to the half, but this post got me excited about the full again. I wish walking helped the heel pain, but it does not. So not sure what to do....but I WILL be there! I'm so glad you're excited. Try to make sure you get in enough nutrition along the course, that helps the dreaded "wall"