Category Archives: Race Review


This past Sunday I ran my last race of the year and it was a fun finish to my 2015 season.

LaceUp_Logo_PrimaryIn the wee hours of the morning… okay, it was technically still nighttime (or “stupid o’clock” as my running coach calls it), I awoke to get ready for the Lexus LaceUp Riverside Half Marathon.

After tossing on my running garb and grabbing a can o’ caffeine (of the Diet Coke variety) to go, I was off to pick up my buddy Kelly for the trek to Riverside.

This was the fourth and final race in the Lexus LaceUp 2015 series and as one of the LaceUp ambassadors, I’ve enjoyed all of the races that preceded it:

  • Irvine (Oct. 17th)
  • Ventura (Oct. 24th)
  • Palos Verdes (Nov. 14th)

And this climactic chapter in the “LaceUp quadrilogy” did not disappoint. Read the rest of this entry


RACE: Lexus LaceUp Irvine

DATE: October 17, 2015


LOCATION: Irvine, CA (Mike Ward Community Park)

START TIME: 8:00am 5K/ 8:10 10K

WEATHER AT START: 70 degrees


  • 10K- 229
  • 5K-  480

Tie those running shoes for the first stop on the Lexus LaceUp 2015 race series. The series also includes races in Ventura (Oct. 24th), Palos Verdes (Nov. 14th) and Riverside (Dec. 6th). The Irvine race was a little different than the others in the series in that it offered only 10K/5K distances, whereas the other races also include the half marathon.

The fact that racers were only running 10K or 5K didn’t seem to dim anyone’s spirits, as a festive bunch of runners gathered in the park on a Saturday morning for fun jaunt around Irvine. Read the rest of this entry


30th anniversary bling.

30th anniversary bling.

RACE: Asics 2015 Los Angeles Marathon

DATE: March 15th, 2015

DISTANCES: Marathon (Sunday)/5K (Saturday)

LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA

START TIME: 6:55am (moved up from 7:25am)

WEATHER AT START: 69° and hot.

FINISHERS: 21,589 (12,569 Men/9,389 Women)

(Updated from 2014 Review) Read the rest of this entry


RACE: Surf City Marathon/Half Marathon 2015

DATE: February 1, 2015

Bring on the bling!

Bring on the bling!

LOCATION: Huntington Beach, CA

DISTANCES: Half Marathon/Marathon

START TIME: 6:30am (Marathon)/7:45am (Half Marathon)

WEATHER AT START: 54° and sunny.

FINISHERS: 14,138- Half Marathon/ 2070- Marathon

(Updated from 2014 review)

So, it’s Super Bowl Sunday. What are you going to do before game time? Watch 10-hours of pre-game banter discussing which team has a better equipment manager? Heck no. Instead, why not run a half marathon (or a full), have fun, earn some bling and build up a major calorie deficit… so you don’t feel guilty stuffing your face during the Big Game.

Well, over 16,000 racers decided to just that and “kicked off” their day by pounding the pavement along Pacific Coast Highway with the annual running of the Surf City Marathon/Half Marathon.

Read the rest of this entry


Disney-ized Darth and company.

Disney-ized Darth and company.

RACE: Star Wars Half Marathon

DATE: January 18, 2015


DISTANCES: Half Marathon/10K/5K/Kids Run

START TIME: 5:30am

WEATHER AT START: 52° and mostly sunny.

FINISHERS: 10374 Half Marathon (Sunday)/ 9195 10K (Saturday)

A long time ago (okay, it was early Sunday morning) in a galaxy far far away (aka Anaheim)…

Half marathon runners were out in full “force” (sorry, been stuck on Star Wars puns all week) for the inaugural running of the Star Wars Half Marathon. When you combine my childhood obsession with Star Wars (I had every Star Wars toy, including Star Wars bed sheets) and my adult obsession of distance running into one event you get something that excites both the big kid and the eternal 8-year-old inside me.
Read the rest of this entry


Thumbing it up with Rudolph.

Thumbing it up with Rudolph.

RACE: Santa To the Sea Half Marathon

DATE: December 14, 2014


DISTANCES: Half Marathon/5K/1K Kids Run/Diaper Dash

START TIME: 8:00am (Half Marathon)

WEATHER AT START: 51° and sunny

FINISHERS: 1,878 (Half Marathon)/ 736 (5K)

‘Tis the season to be sweaty, Fa la la la la… la la la la. This past Sunday the north pole came to Oxnard as a gaggle of runners showed off their holiday spirit (and a whole bunch of wacky holiday costumes too) as they trekked from the 101 highway down to the ocean in the 7th running of the Santa to The Sea Half Marathon. Read the rest of this entry


RACE: Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon

Yes. Yes we do.

Yes. Yes we do.

DATE: November 16, 2014


DISTANCES: Marathon/Half Marathon/Half of Half Marathon/5K

START TIME: 4:30pm

WEATHER AT START: 51° and sunny… colder when the sun went down.

FINISHERS: 25,172 (Half Marathon)/ 3208 (Full Marathon)

“Viva Las Vegas” everyone!  It was a busy night in “Sin City” as almost 30,000 runners shut down the famed Las Vegas strip, gambling that they could finish the latest running of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon/Half Marathon.
Read the rest of this entry


RACE: Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon

Runner's Assemble!

Runner’s Assemble!

DATE: November 16, 2014


DISTANCES: Half Marathon/5K/Kids Race

START TIME: 5:30am

WEATHER AT START: 55° Partly cloudy… and windy as hell.

FINISHERS: 10,449 for the Half Marathon (4042 Men/6407 Women)

Disney has added a new race to its fall California schedule, as runners dressed up as their favorite Marvel super heroes for the inaugural running of this half marathon. The villain at this race, however, were the blustery Santa Ana winds that battered runners throughout the race.
Read the rest of this entry


Run on Canyon City!

Run on Canyon City!

RACE: REVEL Canyon City Half Marathon

DATE: November 15, 2014


DISTANCES: Half Marathon/Full Marathon

START TIME: 7:00am

WEATHER AT START: 54° Partly Cloudy (Half Marathon)/ 38° Partly Cloudy (Full Marathon)

FINISHERS: 888 Half/ 625 Full

Time to REVEL and to run!

This was the inaugural running of the REVEL Canyon City Marathon/Half Marathon, the latest race in the new REVEL race series that also included REVEL Rockies (in July) and REVEL Big Cottonwood (in September).

Read the rest of this entry


RACE: Los Angeles Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon

DATE: October 26, 2014

LOCATION: Downtown Los Angeles

DISTANCES: Half Marathon/5K

START TIME: 7:00am

WEATHER AT START: 61°/ Partly Cloudy

FINISHERS: 7762 (Half Marathon)/ 1264 (5K)

This year marked the 5th running of the LA Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon as thousands of costume-clad Angelenos lined the streets near the Staples Center for a pre-Halloween romp through the city streets. Read the rest of this entry


RunFEST bling!

RunFEST bling!

In the City of Angels, people are known for changing their name (aka “rebranding”) all of the time. Archibald Leach became Cary Grant. Sean Combs went from Puff Daddy to P. Diddy. And Prince became “The Artist Formerly Known As Prince” (yup, for a while his name was symbol) and then thankfully finally went back to Prince.

Well, having undergone an identity shift, the 8-year-old Santa Monica 5000 re-emerged this past Sunday as the newly christened Santa Monica RunFEST. I’m happy to say that even with the name change, the race retained its charm. With a myriad of distances to choose from: a 10K, 5K, untimed 5K “retro themed run,” and a family friendly 3K, around 2000 people laced up their running shoes for some seaside scampering. This year I ran the 10K for the third time and joined 545 other finishers for a fun 6.2 mile jaunt through Santa Monica.


Read the rest of this entry


In 1984, Long Beach hosted its first marathon. In the three decades since, the race has become a popular annual event in southern California featuring almost 20,000 participants enjoying one of the many races they offer, including: the full marathon, half marathon, bike tour and 5K. This past Sunday the race celebrated its 30th anniversary and Long Beach was once again packed with energetic runners and cyclists ready to pound (and ride) the pavement of this seaside city. I ran the half marathon (my fourth time running the route) and will focus my review on that distance.


Registration costs for the Long Beach Half Marathon are in keeping with standard half marathons. The key as always is to sign up sooner rather than later to avoid the higher fees. I registered for the race back about 6 months ago and paid around $80 for the half marathon. You can find occasional discounts online or at race expos.

Scallops... mmmm.

Scallops… mmmm.

Packet pick-up for the race is on the Friday and Saturday before the marathon, located at the Long Beach Convention Center. Expo parking is $10, but street parking is available if you don’t mind parking a few blocks away. I ended up about a half mile from the convention center and meter parked for the cost of a few quarters. The pick-up process is pretty quick, but be sure to bring a copy of your signed release form (they e-mail you it ahead of time) as you need to have it in order to get your bib. And just to be safe, bring a blank one along with you as you’ll invariably find someone looking for a blank form (they don’t print ’em out for you). Fortunately, you can pick up the bib for a friend or family member, but again be sure to have their signed release form and a picture of their ID.

Read the rest of this entry


Hey Trippers!

Guess I'm not the only who smiles when running.

Running happy!

Another TTK tradition starts here, as we’ve got our very first guest writer.

Ashley McDuffie was the winner of our “Salt Lake Shuffle” contest and received a FREE entry into the Big Cottonwood Half Marathon.

She let her inner speed demon loose as she ran the race in a “damn fast” 1:26:36 (6:37 min/mile).

I had hoped to bump into her on the course, but clearly all I would have seen would have been her vapor trails as she rocketed by.

Well, Ashley’s put together her review of the race (along with some snapshots).

So, take it away Ashley!

Read the rest of this entry


Big Cottonwood Bling

Big Cottonwood Bling

Ready to get back to nature and chase a PR at the same time? If so, then look no further than the REVEL Big Cottonwood Marathon/Half Marathon. As the flagship race in the new REVEL series (also includes the REVEL Rockies and REVEL Canyon City races) this scenic downhill course is situated in the mountains just outside of Salt Lake City. Although a relatively new race, Big Cottonwood has already earned a reputation as a well-run event and also serves as a prime Boston qualifier. This year’s race sold out and drew in excess of 2500 runners for the half marathon and over 1500 participants for the full marathon. Read the rest of this entry


“Hi Ho Hi Ho, it’s off to run we go!”

Disney bling!

Disney bling!

Disney, the uber-company which owns Marvel, Lucasfilm (aka Star Wars), Pixar and is responsible for some great family films and wonderful theme parks, has also become quite the upcoming player in the marathon game. With numerous races each year at Walt Disney World in Orlando and at Disneyland in Anaheim, Mickey and Minnie Mouse seem to lace up their running shoes almost every other weekend.

This past Sunday (of Labor Day Weekend), Disney staged the 9th annual Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend (which also included a 10K, 5K and other family events). Amidst the heat and humidity of summer’s final “unofficial” weekend, over 15,000 runners donned their respective Disney costumes or mouse ears and lined up to “Let It Go” (yes, they played the song again and again) at the “Sweatiest place on earth.”

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