Are you the type of person that can’t commit to something next week? Well then this post is not for you.
If you are willing to commit to a race almost a year ahead of time, then you could be rewarded with some pretty decent savings. This post is for The San Francisco Marathon, which I ran a few weeks ago for the fifth time. I especially love the second half since it reminds me how grateful I am to be in this city, whether as a tourist or resident.
If you aren’t familiar, there are a TON of options for this race, including an opportunity to run 52.4 miles! But the main events are the full marathon, the first half marathon, and the second half marathon. The first half starts along the Embarcardero, crosses the Golden Gate Bridge, and then back over the bridge to Golden Gate Park. The second half starts in Golden Gate Park, goes through some iconic SF neighborhoods, and ends on the Embarcardero. The full marathon covers both courses.
The first half tends to be the draw for most people but personally, I didn’t care for it. First off, it starts at 5:30 AM. 5:30 AM?!?!?! Unless you are an elite runner, you feel like you are in a can of sardines by the time you get to the bridge. It feels like a shuffle versus a run since it is so packed with people and there really isn’t a whole lot of room to move around the crowd. Karl the Fog tends to take over the bridge towers and the first half is hilly. The perk is that you are done early enough to hit up any popular breakfast/brunch place without having to wait in line since you will be the first one there.
The second half has my heart. It’s more sleep friendly, though the start time was an hour earlier this year at 7:15. There are some rolling hills but the course is net downhill. You go through Golden Gate Park (hello Buffalos!) and so many wonderful SF neighborhoods including Haight Ashbury, the Mission, Potrero Hill, and Dogpatch. You run by AT&T Park, under the Bay Bridge and then finish on the Embarcardero.
The race next year is scheduled for July 23, 2017. It will be the 40th anniversary and the marathon is currently priced at $110 and both half marathons are $95 each. The coupon code 10TSFM40 will get you an additional $10 off and is good through November 1, 2016. That means $85 for the half marathon and nowadays, that is not a terrible price