Saturday, August 27, 2016

2016 SoFi Golden Gate Half Marathon Preview



* I received a free entry to for the SoFi Golden Gate Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

So you may have seen that I am a brand ambassador for the 2016 SoFi Golden Gate Half Marathon in San Francisco on November 6, 2016.  This has been one of my bucket list races since I first heard about the race a few years back.  This used to be called the US Half Marathon.  The idea of running across the Golden Gate Bridge sounds amazing and there is no way that the amazing scenery couldn’t motivate you when your legs get tired.  I also perform better in colder races so I am hoping for a really good showing, especially since it is about one month before I race the California International Marathon in Sacramento on December 4th.  

I want to share some details about the race itself and don’t miss the coupon code I will post at the bottom to save you 10% off your registration. 

Sponsors

SoFi and Muscle Milk

Course

You start the race at the Muni Pier in Aquatic Park.  You can get some great pre-race pictures with the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz in the background. The race starts out by taking you through the marina and Presidio on your way to the Golden Gate Bridge.  You cross the bridge on the eastern walkway toward Vista Point and then you head back toward San Francisco on the western walkway.  While on the bridge, you can take in the amazing views of the ocean, Baker Beach, and the beautiful skyline of San Francisco.  Once over the bridge, you head down to Fort Point and back through the Marina to the Great Meadow at Fort Mason where the finish line and your awesome medal will be waiting for you.

Expo and Packet Pickup

The expo will be held the day before the race (Saturday, November 5th) from 10:00 AM-6:00 PM.  The location will be announced shortly.  You will have to attend the expo to pick up your race bib and event tee.  There are some options which will allow you to either get the bib and timing chip mailed to you or you can pick it up on race day (both options have an additional fee associated with them). 

Swag

Included in your registration is a commemorative, reusable water bottle, gender specific tech tee, really cool finisher’s medal, free admission into the post-race RunSF Festival and more.  There will also be a virtual gift bag with more goodies.

Price and Discount

The cost of the Golden Gate Half Marathon is currently $94 for the half marathon. If you cannot make it to the expo (like me) you can pay $35 and pick everything up on the morning of the race.  I remember reading that you have access to special bathrooms as part of that fee.  If you want your race bib and timing chip mailed to you instead, it will cost $25, but I don’t think you get access to the special bathrooms and will still have to pick up your shirt and water bottle on race day.  You can register at http://po.st/bibravegg and be sure to use the code “BIBRAVEGG” to get 10% off.  

Top Reasons to run the 2016 SoFi Golden Gate Half Marathon

1)      Amazing view of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Baker Beach and more
2)      An awesome finishers medal and reusable water bottle
3)      The experience of running across the Golden Gate Bridge
4)      Mostly flat and fast course
5)      Limited registrations to make the race more personal (last year was limited to 3,700 runners)
6)      Usually great temperature (Average low: 52 degrees, Average high 66 degrees)
7)      Several places to park within about ½ mile of the start/finish line (pay by the hour parking structures)

My Training Plan

Since my goal race of the year is the California International Marathon (CIM), I will follow the Run Less Run Faster training plan for that race.  I will be running the Urban Cow Half Marathon in Sacramento on October 2nd, the Granite Head Ales and Trails race on October 15th in addition to the Golden Gate Half Marathon (GGHM) on November 6th.  I will use the hills on the GGHM to help me prepare for the rolling hills of the CIM.  

I love the Run Less Run Faster (RLRF) plans because you run 3 days a week, with 2-3 days of cross training.  I will be biking 1-2 days a week and swimming one day a week. The runs are at specific paces and is broken down into one interval/speed run, one tempo run, and one long run.  I used the RLRF half marathon plan earlier this year.  It really worked for me as I was able beat my best half marathon PR by almost 6 minutes during a training run.  The reduced mileage and elimination of “junk miles” helps to reduce the amount of injuries from the author’s claims.  I can see the logic behind it, but since I am not a doctor or physical therapist, I cannot confirm those claims.  You can find the book on Amazon for about $10.  If you are interested in specific information about my plan, please drop me a comment and I would be more than happy to share it with you.

I can’t wait to mark this race off my bucket list.  If you are planning on attending and want to meet up before the race, please let me know.  Also, be sure to go to BibRave and read reviews of this and other races.  Help other people find great races by adding your reviews as well.  I love finding great races and avoiding not so good ones based on what I read on BibRave.   I hope to see you at the race.


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