Thursday, April 30, 2009

Golden Gate Bridge, SFO

What a beauty!! A few days ago, Philippine Airlines came out with super cheap rates to USA, Asia and Australia and I was able to book (though it took a long time) for two tickets to San Francisco for end of October for two -week stay in that city.

Naturally, I wanted to try any race they have during that week. First race I found was to be held on November 1 and is a 4-miler run. It's a Halloween themed event and prizes go for best costumes and for fastest finishers. Good enough for us and Per game also to do one race in USA (I'm aiming for two!).
Unfortunately, it doesn't go through the Golden Gate Bridge which was what I wanted. I was able to convince Per to do some jogging on GGB at a very relaxed pace just so we can see what the experience was like and to which she agreed to it. I even proposed bringing a camera with me so we can stop and take pictures from it.
But last night, as I was browsing through my back issues of Runners World magazines, I came upon a race review for a race that happened in San Francisco. It was called US Half Marathon, San Francisco and route passed through the Golden Gate Bridge!! SIGH! If only we booked our travel dates to be at the same time as this race!
With sadness and envy, I looked at the date when it was last held and it says "November 2, 2008"! WHAT???!!!! Can it be? Is it possible ???
This morning, I went to their website: and got a VERY VERY AWESOME SURPRISE! Next race to be held will be on 11.01.09 !
So FREAKING COOL !!! Immediately, I booked myself for the Half Marathon event. Per was contemplating the Half Marathon or the 10km event as the farthest she ran was a 15km race and she vowed at that time never to run that far or that long again. BUT.... The 10km event DOESN'T go on the Golden Gate Bridge!
With a cut-off time of 3.5 hours (about 9:22 min/km pace), very chilly weather, nice finisher medal and me willing to stick by her if she wants me to, she said YES to the Half Marathon as well! DOUBLE AWESOME!
I researched on what the finisher medal looks like and this is what I found from last year's event:

How great is that???? Perfect souvenir for our USA Vacation! Our bibs will be personalized as well. We decided to put our full names on the bibs (wonderful for framing with the medals when we get back to Manila).

This race will have about 5,000 runners and will pass by Marina, Crissy Field, Presidio and of course, the Golden Gate Bridge! Hydration stops at every 2 miles and has some hills to run on.

Upon finishing race, you will get a medal, t shirt and goodie bag. There will be a Free Concert held near Aquatic Park. There will also be a Sports Expo the day before race for race kit collection, food and drink samples and training/ nutrition tips.

November is so far away (more than 5 months!) but I am already excited for this run! In honor of the GGB color, all blogs related to USA Trip will be in ORANGE -RED.

Trivia: Why is the Golden Gate Bridge called Golden when it is actually orange?

The term Golden Gate refers to the Golden Gate Strait which is the entrance to the San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean. The strait is approximately three-miles long by one-mile wide with currents ranging from 4.5 to 7.5 knots. It is generally accepted that the strait was named "Chrysopylae" or Golden Gate by Army Captain John C. Fremont, circa 1846. It is said it reminded him of a harbor in Istanbul named Chrysoceras or Golden Horn.


ibetlacbay said...

this is exciting. i could sign-up for this and meet you and Per. this is a good prep for the Seattle Marathon on the last week of November. beware, malamig na sa November. hehehe

Rico Villanueva said...

That half-marathon route looks exciting, especially if done as a couple. Have fun :-)

Running Fatboy said...

hi Wilbert, Go sign up for this!!! We can have a heavy breakfast buffet after! haha.

hi Rico, yup yup! We are both excited to do this! Thanks

Johnny Sy said...

Good luck with your half-marathon across the Golden Gate Bridge. San Francisco is one of my favorite haunts and running across the Golden Gate is one of my aspirations. One of these days I'll actually get to do it. Make sure you buy disposable sweatshirts that you'll just dump on the streets as you progress on the run. It'll be cold at the start but you'll warm up as you move along. Have fun and enjoy the race!!

Running Fatboy said...

hi Johnny, thanks for the kind words. We will be landing in SFO a few days before race so looking at getting some long sleeves running gears there. Worst case, we can buy at the expo the day before. So so excited! haha

sfrunner said...

Hi Dennis. Let me know when you and Per arrive. I've run the U.S. Half twice and it's a very scenic run. You cross the Golden Gate Bridge on the east and west side. Hopefully, Wilbert will come as well.

There are some nice restauarants in the vicinity of the finish line.

Take care and have a good weekend ahead.

ibetlacbay said...

i already registered! lets meet up with Wayne :)

Running Fatboy said...

hi Wayne, we should be in SFO by Oct 31st. Let's meet up there or at the running expo. Let me know if you need anything from the Philippines.

hi Wilbert, Wheeee! That should be so much fun. Mey gusto ka sa Pinas? I can bring for you. Kita tayo dun either sa expo before the race or even a day before. :)

sfrunner said...

Hi Dennis. I'm excited that you and Per are coming as well as Wilbert. If you could bring me a copy of the Philippine Star, that would be great!

I haven't signed up yet but I'll be doing the half marathon. Running the Golden Gate Bridge twice will be something you, Per and Wilbert won't forget.

Johnny's correct about the cool weather. It's also possible that we could still have the Indian Summer that is famous in SF. The best weather is in September and October.

I'll keep you guys updated on anything that happens. Take care and have a good week ahead!

Running Fatboy said...

hi Wayne,
Any particular issue of Philippine Star newspaper that you are looking at or just the latest edition?

Running the golden gate will definitely be more fun when we get to do it with you and Wilbert. Keep in touch.

sfrunner said...

Hi Dennis. Nothing particular regarding the issue. If the paper has an article about Filipino running, that would be nice but I didn't pick up a copy the last time I was there.

Anyway, thanks again and good luck to you and Per and all of the runners this Sunday!

Running Fatboy said...

hi Wayne, will be on the look out for any Philippine running articles on that newspaper for you. If not, will get current issue. See you soon!

ibetlacbay said...

pwede bang dalhin niyo ni Per yung mga running friends natin? kakamiss na...hehehe

we should meet earlier tapos mag pasta party tayo. :)

Running Fatboy said...

hi Wilbert, kung pwede lang i-check in un, I will do so. haha. Yes, let's meet up for pasta party with Wayne day or days before race..